A picture of “vice president” Leni Robredo holding the sign “Lugaw Leni” during a visit to an evacuation site supposedly to distribute relief goods is making the rounds in social media. If you still don’t see a problem with this, let me spell it out for you. We have the second highest official in the land trying her darnedest to grab attention away from the people who had been displaced by the sudden eruption of Taal volcano south of Manila.
The threat of a bigger explosive eruption still looms in an area that is home to 500,000 people. Yet Robredo continues to sport a face with a silly smile permanently pasted on it. It’s all well and good for Robredo because she does not live in that area and likely applies no skin in the game there beyond her lame PR stunts.
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) continues to warn that a more dangerous and more destructive eruption could still be imminent. Robredo’s quaint stunts are distracting people from the important things. All she cares about are her “critics” on social media. Her holding up a prop for the cameras — her now-trending “Lugaw Leni” tag — is evidence that she is putting up a show for them — to troll them, so to speak.
This all leads us to question Robredo’s true intentions in engaging in these activities. Does she aim to actually help and, more importantly, address the risks that all these ordinary people who backdrop her misguided stunts are exposed to? Is she really looking after the long-term well-being of these people?
As of this writing, Charlie Natanauan, Vice Mayor of Talisay, Batangas has been issuing statements that contradict the PHIVOLCS warnings.
Rather than use her influence to counter misinformation like this and direct people’s attention to reliable information calm their fears, and assure them that they are doing the right thing in staying away from the danger zones, Robredo chooses to work on her personal brand like any two-bit social media influencer would.
It’s high time people see past these idiotic spectacles. Robredo, for her part, should change her motto to “Look at me look at me!” It is ironic that the very people who had mislabeled the eruption a “tragedy” are now failing to see a growing risk of real tragedy unfolding before them even as Robredo performs for the cameras.
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