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By Prince Golez

Malacañang took offense at tweets the daughters of Vice President Leni Robredo posted to Twitter, apparently asking if President Rodrigo Duterte was still asleep while typhoon Ulysses was devastating parts of Luzon.

In a televised briefing Thursday, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque defended Duterte’s recent outburst against Robredo, whom he accused of dishonesty and grandstanding, as he showed the tweets of her daughters Aika and Tricia looking for the President.

“Hindi po nakakatulong na bagamat hindi ko alam kung talagang nagsabi si Vice President kung ‘nasaan si Presidente’, eh tignan niyo ito. Kung hindi man siya, eh merong mga malapit sa kanya na nagsabi, unang una, yung tweets ng mga malapit sa kanya, yung sariling mga anak niya ata,” said Roque.

“‘Tulog pa rin? Alas otso na’. Galing yan kay Tricia Robredo. Hindi ko alam kung ano ang relasyon nila. Yung galing naman kay Aika Robredo: ‘Sabado eh. Weekend’. So, yun po ang konteksto.”

The Palace official also read the statement of Atty. Barry Gutierrez, Robredo’s spokesperson, during an interview over DZXL radio.

“Ang sabi ni Barry Gutierriez, leaders should be seen and felt in times of crisis… kaya nga po sabi ng Presidente, sinungaling ka, kasi sinabi mo wala ako, nandun ako sa Asean,” said Roque.

“‘Sabi nga Ka Ely, kung talagang gusto, may paraan. Pero kung ayaw gawin, maraming dahilan. Kung tatanungin mo yung security, sasabihin niya, kung maaari ‘wag na, nandun na mismo ang principal kung tutuloy siya o hindi’. So ito yung sinasabi niya na talaga hindi lumalabas ang Presidente,” he added.

On Tuesday, Duterte slammed Robredo for lying about his absence at the height of the storm. She supposedly knew he was attending an online summit with Asean leaders, the President claimed.

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