Archbishop Martin Jumoad of Ozamis has called on the country’s political leaders to “set aside politics” and instead help those most affected by the recent disasters that hit the Philippines.
“Let us set aside politics, our political affiliation, and convictions,” he said in an interview over Radio Veritas. (Read: 3 Simple Ways to Cope With Stress Due to Disaster Response)
“What is important is to unite and work together because we are all Filipinos and those who are suffering are our brothers and sisters,” he added.
The call comes after President Rodrigo Duterte lashed out at Vice President Leni Robredo on national television for allegedly criticizing him for his absence during the recent typhoons.
Duterte accused the vice president of lying to Filipinos and making it seem that the chief executive was missing in action as the country suffers from the brunt of the typhoons. (Read: Fact Check: Things President Duterte Said During His ‘Meltdown’)
Robredo said on Wednesday, November 18, that “it’s well within [the president’s] right” to say she’s unfit for the presidency. “That’s his right. He has long been saying that …. For me, of the many things we’re doing right now, should we even do that?” said Robredo.
“If you say I have not been doing anything, it’s your right to say that. I won’t defend myself because I know the people know the truth,” the vice president added. (Read: 3 Instances Where Leni Robredo Stood up to Fake News Attacks)
Stop Pitting Leaders Against Each Other
Archbishop Jumoad further said that supporters of Duterte and Robredo should not fuel the rift but instead unite to help those in need.
“We have to stop blaming one another,” said the bishop. (Read: A Prayer for the Nation’s Leaders) “We have to recognize that there are lapses, but then if you focus on the lapses then we cannot move on because we continue to blame one another.”