Vice President Leni Robredo met with Catholic Church leaders in the Diocese of Novaliches in Manila in what her camp claimed as an attempt to bring the government closer to the people.
“We cannot do this without all of you,” the vice president told a crowd of priests, nuns, and lay people inside the Good Shepherd Cathedral in Quezon City on March 1.
“The help that we are seeking is not just for this election but for the entire governance,” said Robredo, who is running for president in the coming May elections.
She described the Church as “a colossal force” that the government can partner with “to do good and to bring good.”
“We hope that we can work together to once and for all restore the kind of governance and politics that the people deserve,” she said.
Among the church officials and lay leaders present were Bishop Roberto Gaa of Novaliches, retired Bishop Antonio Tobias, Vicar General for Pastoral Affairs Father Antonio Labiao, and Jun Cruz of the Sangguniang Laiko.
Robredo has worked with Bishop Tobias and Father Labiao in the past in the Ugnayan ng Barangay At Simbahan (UBAS), a strategic partnership of barangays, the Church, and other faith-based organizations, and the Department of the Interior and Local Government.
“The people have a stake in governance,” said Robredo, adding that “the only way for the people to be empowered is to give them the mechanism and the platform to directly participate in governance.”
The vice president said that only the Church has the machinery to “replace lies with the truth” to ounter the prevailing “culture of disinformation and propaganda.”
She said the people, who have become victims of fake news, “are not to be blamed,” adding that it is not their fault if they have limited access to information.
“Let us work together to enlighten our fellow Filipinos and guide them in their discernment process to differentiate the lies from truth,” she said.
“We want to break the architecture for disinformation,” added Robredo who said she and her running mate, former senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan, “are very privileged that we are fighting this fight alongside” with Church and lay leaders.