It’s not news to us that President Rodrigo Duterte and his allies are not on the best of terms with Vice President Leni Robredo. Being part of the opposition, the Vice President has received a plethora of insults, bashing, misogynistic and sexist remarks, and even fake news attacks from the President’s allies and supporters.
The most recent instance of fake news about Robredo was just a few days ago, when Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo claimed that he got the information from Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Delfin Lorenzana that the Vice President used a C-130 plane owned by the government to visit typhoon-stricken Bicol.
Robredo denied the accusation, and her statement was confirmed when Secretary Lorenzana acquired a flight manifest that showed that Robredo didn’t board any military aircraft for her trip. The secretary and former spokesperson have since apologized to Robredo for the misunderstanding. (Read: Fact Check: Things President Duterte Said During His ‘Meltdown’)
This was not the first time that fake news was spread about the Vice President and her name dragged through the mud. In fact, over the course of her term, Robredo has been dealing with fake news attacks—and to every accusation, she bravely stands up and belies her bashers’ statements. Here are some of those occurrences.
Fake News: Robredo Donated Spoiled Food to Frontliners
Back in June, news about the Office of the Vice President (OVP) providing healthcare workers at the Diliman Doctors Hospital with spoiled meals went viral on social media. The rumors started when a netizen posted on his timeline, claiming that there were people saying the meals given by the OVP were spoiled. (Read: What We Know So Far About the COVID-19 Vaccines From Pfizer, Moderna)
Robredo and her spokesperson Atty. Barry Gutierrez were quick to deny the claims and even posted screenshots of those who posted and re-posted the fake news. “If there was no malice, you should have checked first before posting,” Robredo wrote. “You should know that posting fake news makes you criminally liable.”
The Diliman Doctors Hospital has later released an official statement saying that while they did receive food donations from the OVP on “three occasions,” none of the donations was spoiled. They also belied claims that both Robredo and Gutierrez went to the hospital to offer them “monetary payoff,” which was allegedly done to stop news about the alleged issue from coming out.
Fake News: Robredo Supports ABS-CBN Shutdown
During the height of the ABS-CBN franchise issue, an alleged photo quote of the Vice President went viral on social media. In the photo, Robredo was apparently explaining why the ABS-CBN has legitimately lost its land ownership rights. She later on denied these claims through a post saying, “Fake news uli. Never said this.” (Read: Celebrities Express Concern for ABS-CBN Workers Set to Lose Jobs)
In addition, netizens also accused Robredo of not doing anything to support the ABS-CBN’s franchise renewal when she was still a congresswoman and vice chairwoman of the House Committee on Good Government and Public Accountability. The Vice President responded to this accusation with a thorough explanation of her duties then. “Puwede lang pong ma-involve ang ibang committees kung may matters na kabahagi ng franchise application na irefer sa kanila. Nung 16th Congress po kung saan ako kabahagi, hindi po ito ni-refer sa aming committee. Committee on Legislative Franchises lang po ang humawak nito noon,” she said.
Fake News: Robredo Urges Public Officials to Invest in Her River Project
Just last week, another false claim involving the Vice President’s name went viral on social media. The accusation said that Robredo was asking government officials to prioritize building flood control infrastructure, accompanied by a photo of the damaged Naga revetment project which she started during her term as a congresswoman. (Read: Caritas Manila Warns of ‘Fake Donation Drives’ Amid Typhoon Relief Efforts)
Robredo immediately slammed the accusation, clarifying that the posted photo was taken in 2016, and that the damage had already been fixed that same year. “Pinapakita nito ang pagguho ng bahagi ng Naga Revetment Project, na agad namang naipaayos at maayos pa rin hanggang ngayon, matapos dumaan ang Super Typhoon #RollyPH,” Robredo said.