In a surprising move, President Rodrigo Duterte called up Vice President Leni Robredo to formally offer her to be the chief of Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC)
President Duterte’s phone call occurred right in the middle of an interview with a news reporter and his Cabinet members in Malacanang.
His intention was to finally put a stop to speculations whether VP Robredo will spend her six-year tenure with a Cabinet position or not.
The video footage of President Duterte’s phone call was published on the Facebook account of Presidential Broadcast Staff – RTVM, few hours after VP Robredo confirmed her appointment as HUDCC chief today, July 7.
Here, PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) rounds up some interesting bits from President Duterte’s impromptu phone call to VP Robredo.
1. Duterte unexpectedly asked a reporter to call up Leni.
“Okay, I’ll satisfy everybody because that is the question that everybody, every media that I get to meet—especially up close and personal—they always say, 'Ano ibigay mo kay Leni?'
“Now, are you [reporter Rocky Ignacio] a friend of Leni? Do you have a way of communicating with Leni Robredo, the vice president? Can you call her now?
“Bong [Go, president’s executive assistant], do you have the number of Leni? Call her.
“Because I will tell her what you [reporters] are asking me always… Gusto mo magtanong tapos ngayon ayaw. O, you listen.”
2. Duterte asked Leni for permission to answer media’s queries.
“Ma'am Leni—it is afternoon pa pala—good afternoon. Nandito ako sa opisina ngayon.
“Tinatanong ako ni Rocky Ignacio sa Malacanang press kung bibigay ko raw kayo ng puwesto sa gabinete.
“Yun ang tanong niya. Puwede kong sagutin?”
3. Duterte addressed Robredo as “Ma'am Leni” nine times.
“A, tinanong ka rin... Panay kasi ang ano...
“Nahihiya na ako, Ma'am, e. Nakikinig ang buong Cabinet, Ma'am. Pati yung...”
4. Duterte respectfully asks Leni to be the HUDCC chief.
“Alam mo, Ma'am, kasi tinawagan kita para mahinto itong tanung-tanong… Kaya nga, e.
“Do not be apologetic. Basta gusto ko na itong tanung-tanong [matapos na].
“Puwede ka Housing, Ma'am? Can you be Housing secretary? Tanggapin mo, Ma'am?
“Huwag na, Ma'am. The executive secretary will hand you the appointment.
“So, mahinto na ito, Ma'am, kasi... Tatanggapin mo, Ma'am, kaya? Sige, Ma'am.”
5. Duterte warmly invited Leni to the next Cabinet meeting.
“So that will be on time with the next Cabinet meeting and even on security matters; para you will be kept abreast of what is happening to our country. Just for you to know.”