MANILA - Vice President Leni Robredo said Friday courage and empathy, not dictatorship, transform people's lives.
"Quiet courage and empathy and leaders that put in the hard work of actually transforming the lives of people are rarities in these times when dictatorship is claimed by some to be better," she said, in an apparent swipe at President Rodrigo Duterte.
Duterte earlier claimed that the Philippines would be better off in the hands of dictators like the late Ferdinand Marcos than Robredo.
During her speech at the 2018 Ramon Magsaysay Awards ceremony, Robredo said the country won't move to a better future if those trusted by the public threaten lives instead of protecting them.
"When those trusted by the electorate threaten lives instead of protect them, divide the nation instead of unite it, attack people's cherished beliefs instead of nourishing them, and present themselves only through empty promises as the antidote to what they say are outdated and decaying ideas like democracy, we don't move towards a better future," she said.
Robredo has also lashed out at Duterte's allegations that her hometown was a hotbed of illegal drugs.
"The allegations made by the president are recycled rants conveniently used to deflect attention from the failures of this administration," she said. - report from Bettina Magsaysay, ABS-CBN News