MANILA (Mabuhay) – Vice President Leni Robredo called on Filipinos to join in the “few voices” against extrajudicial killings and the prevailing culture of violence and hatred.
Robredo, who earlier called for a serious investigation on extrajudicial killings, said there is not enough outrage on the matter yet.
“I’ve been very vocal about it… But you know, I’m just one voice. Even if I’m vice president, I’m just one voice,” she said during a press conference in Pennsylvania, USA, where she was guest of honor of the National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA).
She added: “There have been a few voices already out there against extrajudicial killings, but I think the public outcry is just not there yet. I think all of us should do our share in making sure… this has to stop.”
She acknowledged that the situation is “scary in the sense na maraming nangyayari pero kaunti ‘yung [outrage].”
Robredo revealed that she had just lost two of her friends – a barangay captain in Camarines Sur and a sheriff – in these killings.
Further, she noted the hatred that seems to prevail on social media since the campaign period for the May polls.
She pointed out, though, that this attitude is also present in other parts of the world.
“Parang there is already a pervading culture of impunity. Not only that: If you look at social media, it also seems like there is a culture of hatred already. Parang kakaiba ngayon,” she said.
“I think this started during the campaign period. Parang hindi naman tayo ganito,” she added. “But if you will also look at the rest of the world, it seems like we’re not alone in this. Parang there is a global phenomenon right now, there is a culture of hatred going around.”
‘Is this really what we want?’
The Vice President pointed out that President Rodrigo Duterte had repeatedly said “the rule of law and due process would be honored,” but added that “everyone of us should have a stake in this.”
“’Pag hindi kasi enough ‘yung public outcry, it brings a sense of hopelessness, and you ask yourself, ‘Is this really what the majority wants?’” she said. “Kasi kung ito talaga ‘yung gusto natin, ‘yung mga ayaw nu’n, dapat talagang matakot.”
She added: “Pero kung hindi naman ito ‘yung gusto natin, pero marami lang sa’ting hindi bumoboses, then we’re not doing enough.”
During the press conference, she pointed out that the media “can do a lot [in] as far as creating a mindset that this is not right.”
Robredo took a week-long trip to the US upon the invitations of Filipino-American communities. Aside from Pennsylvania, she also met with groups of Filipinos in San Francisco, California.(MNS)