Affirm what is right and true, and assert the truths of the Philippines' history, urged Leni Robredo in her Independence Day message on Sunday (June 12).
"Stand firm on a story that can never be changed, stolen, erased – a story that binds us according to a collective past, and allows us the strength to march towards a collective future," said the outgoing Vice President in a video message on Facebook.
Alluding to "the struggle, the names of those who sacrificed, the deep love for country", Robredo declared that the thread of the country's history can never be broken. "Any freedom that our ancestors might have achieved is but one step in the long path towards national fruition – a journey that we continue to tread until today."
She urged her fellow countrymen, "As ordinary citizens, there is much we can do. Be open and loving; help those in need. Find inspiration in one another, and from those who came before."
The 57-year-old added, "We are called to forge on, aware of all that we have had to go through as a unified nation."
Last month, Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr., son of the late dictator, won a landslide victory in the presidential elections against Robredo, following a surge of online disinformation that glorified his father’s rule. Academics and activists fear further distortion of history – and even the disappearance of historical records – once the family returns to office.
Meanwhile, Robredo will launch the Angat Buhay non-government organization, said to be the largest volunteer group in the country, on July 1. It aims to reach out to the marginalized and uplift the neglected.