Robredo remembers late husband's leadership principles on death anniversary

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Source: Office of the Vice President

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, August 18) — Vice President Leni Robredo is grateful that the leadership principles of her late husband, former Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo, still live among the officials of their hometown in Camarines Sur.

"Noong nabubuhay pa iyong asawa ko, parati niya sa aming sinasabi na una, walang monopoly ng husay, na dapat iyong lahat nabibigyan ng pagkakataon," Leni said during a program which commemorated Jesse's seventh death anniversary.

[Translation: When my husband was still alive, he would always tell us there is no monopoly of competence, and that everyone should be given a chance.]

The celebration was held on Sunday outside the Museo ni Jesse Robredo (Jesse Robredo Museum) in Naga City, Camarines Sur.

Leni said her husband also believed that a true leader is someone who influences others to become better.

The Vice President said these leadership principles continue to guide the local government of Naga even after Jesse died in a plane crash on August 18, 2012.

Jesse was known for his so-called "tsinelas (slippers) leadership". His admirers say this is in reference to the footwear of ordinary people describes his kind of governance.

"Noong umalis iyong asawa ko, lalo pa nilang pinagbuti kung anuman iyong mga naumpisahan. Iyong sa akin, buong-buo iyong aming pasasalamat," Leni said.

[Translation: When my husband passed away, they improved on what he has started. We are very thankful for that.]

"Kapag tinitingnan ko ngayon iyong mga sumunod sa kanya dito sa City Government of Naga, sobrang... sobrang natutuwa ako na, parang, nangyari iyong ginusto ng asawa ko: na iyong mga nakapalibot sa kaniya dati, lalo pang humusay," she added.

[Translation: Whenever I look at those who followed him in the city government of Naga, I always feel grateful because those who were with him before have become better, which was what he always wanted.]

Leni expressed her gratitude to people who remember her late husband.

"Iyong sa akin, mas pasasalamat sa ngalan ng aming pamilya, pasasalamat sa lahat na nakakaalala pa din, pumupunta. Mayroong mga pumupunta dito kahit hindi taga-dito, yearly talaga pumupunta para makiisa," she said.

[Translation: On behalf of my family, I thank those who always remember him. There are some who still come here every year even if they don't live here.]

"Nagpapasalamat din ako sa city officials ng Naga, kasi sila iyong naging pamilya ng asawa ko nang napakatagal," she added.

[Translation: I also thank the city officials of Naga, because they became the family of my husband for a long time.]

The foundation named after Jesse recently launched the "Gawad Jesse M. Robredo" or Jesse M. Robredo Award, a leadership award for local executives in the country.

Leni said they want to recognize leaders who share the same values and principles as her husband.

"Iyong ninanais natin, na sana maging inspirasyon sila sa mga susunod na generation ng mga leaders. Ang amin kasing paniniwala, marami namang matitino at mahuhusay. Hindi lang nabibigyan ng recognition, hindi nabibigyan ng pagkakataon na makilala," she said.

[Translation: We want them to be an inspiration to the next generation of leaders. We believe that there are many decent and competent leaders. They just don't get recognized.]