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Bastusan na! Palace protocol officials give Robredo shabby treatment at PMA grad rites

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All might seem well between President Rodrigo Duterte and Vice President Leni Robredo when they met Sunday (March 12) at the graduation rites of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) Salaknib Class of 2017.

They appeared cordial to each other when they shook hands on stage at the start of the program.

Yet if Malacañang protocol officers were to have their way, the meeting between Duterte and Robredo would never have taken place.

Politiko has learned that the protocol officers originally wanted Robredo seated at the far end of the grandstand, where Duterte would not see her.

The move, however, was bucked by PMA officials, who told the Palace officials to respect the position of the Vice President if they cannot respect Robredo.

The protocol officers eventually relented to have Robredo seated beside Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, a chair away from Duterte.

But in a bid to make Robredo feel out of place, protocol officers excluded her name from the program and from Duterte’s speech.

Politiko found out that the protocol officers originally did not want to invite the Vice President to the graduation rites, but this was opposed by PMA officials.

They said the school should be spared from politics.

It’s likely that Duterte was aware of the shabby treatment the protocol officers wanted to accord to Robredo since he has been cold towards her since late last year.

It was the President who ordered Robredo to stop attending Cabinet meetings, a move which prompted Robredo to resign as housing czar.