5 Dec, MANILA- Philippine Vice-President Leni Robredo said Sunday she was told that President Rodrigo Duterte had barred her from cabinet meetings, and alleged there was a plot to oust her as his deputy.
Robredo, who said she would resign from the cabinet, did not say who was behind the alleged plot to remove her as vice-president.
But she cited differences with Duterte, such as over the rash of extrajudicial killings during his “war on drugs” and the hero’s burial granted to dictator Ferdinand Marcos.
In the Philippines the president and vice-president are elected separately. Duterte and Robredo come from rival parties.
“I had been warned of a plot to steal the Vice-Presidency. I have chosen to ignore this and focus on the job at hand. But the events of recent days indicate that this plot is now being set in motion,” Robredo said in a statement on her Facebook page.
“I will not allow the Vice-Presidency to be stolen” despite leaving the cabinet, she said.
“We received a text (SMS) message last Saturday from Cabinet Secretary (Leoncio) Evasco, relaying the President’s instruction… for me “to desist from attending all Cabinet meetings starting this Monday, December 5”.
“This is the last straw, because it makes it impossible for me to perform my duties,” Robredo said.
She had been named to the cabinet as a housing official. (AFP)