2022 Philippine Elections

Former United Nations staff back Robredo in 2022 polls

Sofia Tomacruz
Former United Nations staff back Robredo in 2022 polls

Women who form Boracay for Leni - representing shopkeepers, fisherfolk, and other sectors in the island - gathered to listen to Vice President Leni Robredo's support for their opposition to the Boracay Island Development Authority bill.

VP Leni Media Bureau

Over 200 former workers of UN agencies across the world and in the Philippines say Vice President Leni Robredo's platforms and track record can bring 'transformative change'

MANILA, Philippines – Retired officers, staff, and technical advisers who worked with various agencies of the United Nations (UN) came together to publicly endorse Vice President Leni Robredo’s bid for the presidency in the upcoming May 2022 elections.

In a statement shared with media on Thursday, February 17, over 200 former workers of UN agencies across the world and in the Philippines expressed their “wholehearted support” for Robredo, saying the Vice President’s platforms if elected to Malacañang, “will take us Filipinos to the right path of transformative change.”

The move to back Robredo is rare considering former staff had worked for groups that are traditionally apolitical and silent. Among the signatories were those who worked for UN agencies like the United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef), International Labor Organization, World Health Organization, UN headquarters in New York, UN Population Fund, UN Development Programme, and World Food Programme. 

Those part of the group praised Robredo’s agenda, saying it addressed priority concerns of the country like health care, justice and human rights, gender equality, environmental protection, job recreation, and food security, among others. 

They also praised Robredo’s track record in government which proved that she could respond to Filipinos in need, despite the limited budget of her office. 

“Her bold action to address the challenges of the COVID pandemic in providing adequate health care, financial assistance, and livelihood opportunities are evidence of her kind of leadership: compassionate, competent, effective, efficient and strategic,” they said. 

Strongly grounded in international law, the signatories hailed Robredo’s position to uphold the Philippines’ arbitral award against China in the West Philippine Sea and her support for the International Criminal Court’s probe into the Duterte administration’s drug war. 

“VP Leni embodies our cherished values as a people: honesty, integrity, strength, and courage. With her, we can all look forward to a government where transparency and accountability, truth and freedom, democracy and justice will prevail,” they said. 

The full list of signatories are listed below:

Support from former staff, officers, and technical advisers of UN agencies comes after at least 42 retired career diplomats, along with retired former chiefs of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, earlier backed Robredo, saying she possessed “all the qualities of an ideal Chief Executive and Commander-in-Chief of our Armed Forces.”

Among those who signed the statement were retired officials who served under the administrations of former president Benigno Aquino III, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, and Fidel Ramos. – Rappler.com

Sofia Tomacruz

Sofia Tomacruz covers foreign affairs and is the lead reporter on the coronavirus pandemic. She also writes stories on the treatment of women and children. Follow her on Twitter via @sofiatomacruz. Email her at sofia.tomacruz@rappler.com.