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Netizens are divided on whether Mar Roxas is better than Pres. Rodrigo Duterte

Those critical of the President say Roque dropping Roxas’s name is merely a distraction, something the Duterte administration is already known for.

A name we only ever hear of when memes are discussed is now making rounds on social media after his name was dropped by a Palace official.

“I think President Duterte is the President that we need right now. Mantakin mo naman. Can you really imagine a Roxas leading this country amidst the many trials that we have had? From COVID pandemic to China?”

That was Palace spokesperson Harry Roque talking to News5 about President Rodrigo Duterte being a better fit right now over former senator and 2016 Presidential candidate Mar Roxas.

This statement, posted many times across other news agencies, has caused a rift on social media big enough to be noticed.

Netizens are now reviving two of Roxas’s biggest failures: his handling of the crisis during Typhoon Yolanda in 2013 and the Mamasapano incident in 2015–both of which happened during his tenure as secretary of Interior for then-President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III.

These points to Roxas doing a worse job than what Duterte has so far achieved, according to Duterte’s supporters.

A Netizen, however, would point out how it was Roxas, who was involved in scrapping the College Assurance Plan or CAP (a pre-need insurance company) that got shelved in favor of Roxas’s allies in the insurance industry.

One of Duterte’s most ardent defenders even went personal with Roxas. He singled out Roxas’s ‘choice of wife.’–referred to former TV Patrol anchor Korina Sanchez-Roxas.

Sanchez was [allegedly] taken-off the primetime newscast for ABS-CBN News after allegedly showing bias toward her husband during the campaign trail in 2016.

Perhaps the statement that got most resounded with–those critical of is his line to Tacloban City Mayor Alfred Romualdez.

A mere distraction?

Netizens critical of the Administration, on the other hand, beg to differ.

Those critical of the President say Roque dropping Roxas’s name is merely a distraction, something the Duterte administration is already known for.

Singer-actress Leah Navarro, who once campaigned for Roxas–is the one leading to defended the former senator.

According to Navarro, “Lessons from Yolanda were well learned.”

She also said Roxas had no part in Mamasapano, and that his management skills are needed now more than ever.

One Netizen even pointed out how some educational materials from the Department of Education “vilified” Roxas, calling his actions “pakitang-tao”.

Other Netizens, however, are still looking at the bigger picture: both Roxas and Duterte are failures in their own right.

One politician would take a swipe at neither of the two, rather than going straight after Roque.

In a statement, Quezon City 6th District Representative Kit Belmonte tells Roque he would still be a staunch human rights defender had Roxas actually won in 2016.

Roque was last seen on the judiciary bench during the promulgation of the cases filed against the Ampatuans when he represented some of the families of the victims.

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