It ain’t easy being Harry.
Secretary Harry Roque has been besieged these past few days (years), owing to a leaked video showing the temperamental presidential spokesperson blowing his top during a meeting about the pandemic while the camera also caught a piece of food (?) at the corner of his mouth.
That was followed not long after when hundreds of his peers sent petitions to the International Law Commission (ILC) calling Roque “unworthy” of a seat at the prominent United Nations advisory body. The coup de grace came by way of the University of the Philippines — Roque’s alma mater and longtime employer — when it issued a strongly worded statement also opposing Roque’s appointment to the seat at the commission.
In response, the spokesperson issued a statement using the official Facebook page of the Office of the Spokesperson, saying that it was “clear that there are some sectors who will do everything to besmirch my good name, reputation and integrity, simply because I do not subscribe to and share their same political beliefs.”
Although Roque’s statement starts off by saying that he “respect[s] the right of the Committee and its members to proffer their opinion on my candidacy,” the spokesperson nevertheless offered a lengthy defense of his credentials, writing out his LinkedIn highlights in the Facebook post.
“For over 30 years, I have been an advocate of human rights, having spent most of my professional life as a member of civil society and as a public interest lawyer representing persons and sectors who have needed to be championed,” Roque wrote. He also reminded the UP Executive Council that he has “represented journalists,” even if the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines had also issued a burning statement castigating Roque for his behavior not too long ago.
So, to reiterate, it’s been tough being Harry Roque. To balance out the books a little bit, we elect to think back to November 2020, when Roque—who also needed to blow off some steam back then—kicked back and offered his version of “Pare Ko,” which was, incidentally, originally performed by Eraserheads, a slightly more beloved set of UP alumni, whose lyrics go: “‘Di ba, t*ngina, nagmukha akong tanga.”
This article, Harry Roque has had a tough week, so here’s a throwback to good old Harry-oke times, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia's leading alternative media company.