MANILA — Malacañang on Thursday criticized the tweets of Vice President Leni Robredo's daughters allegedly criticizing President Rodrigo Duterte, prompting her office to ask why the government chooses to spend its time on this despite the aftermath of a destructive typhoon.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, in his press briefing, was asked to explain Duterte's Monday false claim that Robredo did nothing to address the typhoon and propagated the viral hashtag #NasaanAngPangulo or where is the President.
Roque noted Robredo's overnight tweets giving updates on rescue operations for residents of Cagayan Valley region, who were trapped on their rooftops by raging floods.
"Mali naman iyong impresyon na ibinigay natin na kung hindi dahil kay Vice President, baka hindi gumalaw itong mga ito—Hindi po," he told reporters.
(The impression given was wrong, that the government would not have moved if not for Robredo.)
Roque said those close to Robredo asked about the whereabouts of the President. He said Robredo's daughter Tricia asked, "Tulog pa rin? Alas otso na" (Still asleep? It's already 8 a.m.) and that her sister Aika replied "Sabado e. Weekend" (It's Saturday, a weekend).
Robredo's spokesman Barry Gutierrez said that the storm killed at least 69 people, displaced 325,000 others, and left billions in damage.
"And this administration is now spending it's time analyzing TWEETS by VP Leni's daughters?! Si VP Leni balik agad trabaho. Kayo tatlong araw na ito pa rin ang hanash. Sino nga uli ang namumulitika?" he tweeted.
(VP Leni returned to work immediately. It has been 3 days, but you are still talking about this. Who is politicking?)
Robredo had said critics could check her Twitter account to verify that she never inquired about the President's whereabouts.
"Bakit ako maghahanap na busyng-busy na nga tayo sa pagtulong at pagsagot sa mga distress calls?" she said in a chance interview.
(Why would I look for him where I was very busy helping and answering distress calls.)