PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte stood firm on his attacks that Vice President Maria Leonor “Leni” Robredo was a liar and dishonest when she claimed that the President was “missing” few days after typhoon “Ulysses” devastated many parts of Luzon.
Malacanang officials said Duterte was correct when he accused Robredo was spreading false statements about the whereabouts of the President after the onslaught of Ulysses.
Malacanang said that Duterte has also visited provinces hit by super typhoon “Rolly”.
Duterte painted Robredo as “dishonest” after learning that Robredo issued a press statement saying he was “missing”.
This was the latest attack of Duterte on Robredo.
Robredo appeared to be the leader of the opposition since she is the chairperson of the Liberal Party (LP).
Duterte reminded Robredo that he attended the virtual summit of the leaders of ASEAN when Ulysses entered Luzon.
Right after Ulysses’ devastating attacks on various towns of Rizal province particularly San Mateo and Montalban and in Cagayan, Duterte conducted aerial viewing on the affected areas.
He also visited Cagayan and Camarines Sur.
The President ordered the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) to infuse the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (MDRRC) with additional P10 billion for the victims of the typhoon Ulysses.
Duterte made such decision after the DBM released P5 billion during the first week of November 18, 2020 to assist the victims of super typhoon “Rolly”.
The P15 billion will increase NDRRMC’s funds to P31 billion funds for this year, DBM Secretary Wendel Avisado the other day.
As these things happened, Robredo lambasted Duterte.
Robredo’s attack was made simultaneously with “#NasaanAngPangulo” circulating on social media.
The hashtag appeared when Rolly hit many parts of Luzon, including the National Capital Region (NCR).
Without explanations, the message was very clear: Duterte was hiding while the typhoon displaced a big number of the Filipinos, particularly in the Bicol Region.
Several newspapers published stories about the hashtag.
The #NasaanAngPangulo appeared once again while Duterte was attending the virtual ASEAN Summit.
The attack strongly suggested that Duterte does not care with the typhoon that could hit many ordinary citizens.
This prompted Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque Jr. to criticize the opposition.
Roque made it clear that the President was monitoring the situation.
The #NasaanAngPangulo had previously joined the public opinion landscape.
It first appeared after the super typhoon “Yolanda” hit Leyte and nearby provinces in 2013.
It destroyed many business establishments, houses of ordinary people and killed more than 6,000 people.
The opposition released the hashtag precisely to attack then President Benigno Cojuangco Aquino III.
Then, the same hashtag resurrected after 42 cops belonging to the Philippine National Police -Special Action Force (PNP – SAP) killed in Mamasapano town in Maguindanao on January 25,2015.
The opposition’s purpose was to ensure that Aquino’s reputation as President and leader of the LP was destroyed using the issue of the murder of 42 elite cops.
Sources pointed to public relations expert as the creator of the #NasaanAngPangulo.
The purpose was to ensure that Aquino’s and LP’s candidates in 2016 elections would not win, particularly the President.
True, Manuel “Mar” Roxas II, Aquino’s candidate for president lost to Duterte by more than 16 million votes.
The result of the #NasaanAngPangulo if it would serve its purpose will only be known if a survey is done in the future about this issue