“Are you ready for me?”
These were the challenging words uttered by Vice President Leni Robredo last November 6, 2019 in a press conference at the Quezon City Reception House when she willingly accepted the role in implementing a deathless war on drugs of which was President Duterte’s challenge.
This was after she was formally assigned as one of the two heads of the Inter-agency Committee on Anti-illegal Drugs (ICAD) with a letter dated, October 31 after the criticism that his administration received from her party regarding his drug campaign in the country.
“Ang pinakamahalagang konsiderasyon para sa akin ay simple lang: Kung ito ang pagkakataon para matigil ang patayan ng mga inosente at mapanagot ang kailangan managot, papasanin ko ito kaya tinatanggap ko ang trabahong ibinibigay sa akin ng Pangulo,” Robredo said.
The Vice President made her new position’s limitations clear to the public that as a co-chairman of an inter-agency group, her job is limited to policy making only and not having supervision over the PNP and other departments.
Robredo stated her plan of sending the President a weekly report highlighting her policy recommendations as co-chairman of the ICAD as a fulfillment to her duty. She assured the public that despite the limitations, she would do everything she believe she can do to play her role satisfactorily.
“Even if we say that the offer was mere politicking and the government agencies will not follow me and they will do everything for me not to succeed, I’m ready to bear all of these. Because if I can save one innocent life, my principles and heart are telling me I should give it a try,” says Robredo.
She told the reporters in Naga City last November 15 that her office already sent the first report to Duterte as a partial fulfillment to her statement of sending her weekly report to the office of the president while the Philippines waits for the outcome of Robredo’s “deathless war on drugs”.