Robredo appeals for unity between Duterte and Catholic church to help PHL

  • VP Leni Robredo said  the apparent spat between President Rodrigo Duterte and members of the Catholic church in the Philippines creates animosity
  • She said unity, respect and ways to solve problems are the keys for a better society
  • Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella, on the other hand, cleared that Duterte’s remarks was not “anti-Catholic”

Vice President Leni Robredo called on Filipinos to unite in this “extraordinary time”, respect each other’s differences and think of productive ways on how to help the less fortunate members of society.

The appeal was made by the country’s second highest official amid the apparent spat between President Rodrigo Duterte and members of the Catholic church in the Philippines after the Chief Executive scored Catholic priests and leaders for “hypocrisy”, as he bristled at their supposed criticism over the rising death toll in his administration’s war against drugs.

As mentioned in an article published by GMA News Online, Robredo said Duterte’s remarks “creates animosity” between the two institutions.

“Parang ngayon, extraordinary time ito sa ating bansa at hindi nakakatulong na nag-aaway-away tayo,” Robredo was quoted saying.

[This is an extraordinary time for our country and fighting doesn’t help us.]

It is a common knowledge that the President openly expressed disgust and recently expressed his dismay over priests who tag casualties in the drug war as cases of extrajudicial killings.

In stating his piece, the Chief Executive called out the supposed hypocrisy of priests who take wives despite swearing to an oath of celibacy, and even said Catholic leaders had no moral ascendancy if they could not give justice to the children molested by priests.

Duterte also asked Catholic leaders what they have contributed to the campaign against illegal drugs despite millions in collection its parishes receive.

Meanwhile, Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella said Novaliches Bishop Emeritus Teodoro Bacani, who denounced the anti-drug war as a “bringer of death”, triggered Duterte’s latest tirade.

Abella, however, cleared that the President’s remarks was not “anti-Catholic”; further suggesting that to thresh out differences, Catholic church leaders should meet Duterte for a dialogue.