Robredo: Women leaders handling pandemic 'more inclusive'

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New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, Vice President Leni Robredo, German Chancellor Angela Merkel

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 26) – The Philippines can learn the lesson of giving more groups a say on the state's response to COVID-19 from the success stories of Germany and Taiwan, nations both led by women, Vice President Leni Robredo said.

"If you look at women leaders who have been successful, they were more inclusive, mas bukas makinig sa iba’t ibang mga [they are more receptive to different] points of view," she told CNN Philippines' The Source on Friday.

Robredo is reacting to reports that some states, which happened to be run by female leaders, handled local outbreaks better than others. New Zealand under Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, for example, has eliminated the local transmission of the coronavirus, with life now getting back to normal except for the ban on inbound international flights.

Last week, former Senator Antonio Trillanes IV challenged Malacañang to appoint Robredo as the head of the government's COVID-19 task force after Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque demanded that the Vice President offer solutions, not just criticisms.

"We would have responded well if many other people are given voices, hindi lang ako [not just me]," the Vice President said. "Maraming mga taong may alam. It would have benefitted our fight against COVID-19 kung mas nabigyan ng papel iyong mas maraming sektor to help na hindi na-confine sa gobyerno iyong pag-isip ng mga paraan."

[Translation: There are many people who are knowledgeable. It would have benefitted our fight against COVID-19 if more sectors were given a role to play so that crafting strategies is not confined to the government.]

Robredo also said the private sector should be given a chance to actively contribute to policymaking and response measures, adding that no group has a monopoly on solutions.

The Philippines now has 33,069 coronavirus cases, with 8,910 recovered patients and 1,212 deaths.