VP Robredo goes on US trip to attend gala event and send off daughter to Harvard

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 22) — Vice President Leni Robredo attended a gala event in Los Angeles and took some private time to help her daughter settle into Harvard University.

Robredo, in a Facebook post on Wednesday, said that after her speaking engagement in Los Angeles during the weekend, she "decided to fly to Boston right after to help Aika settle in."

"It was a very hectic two days for both of us as we fixed and cleaned her apartment inside the campus," she said.

Her first-born daughter Aika, 29, is enrolled in Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government's Mid-Career Master in Public Administration program which begins June 26. The younger Robredo is an Edward S. Mason Fellow at the school.

"I was a full-time mother once again," she said, sharing photos fixing up Aika's bed, grocery shopping, going around the campus, and visiting "old haunts from 19 years ago" when the Robredos lived there.

Her daughter's enrollment at an Ivy-league university generated controversy over funding, as critics stated she had no legal means to support her daughter's schooling. According to Harvard's Kennedy School website, a year there costs at least $81,119 (₱4 million) without financial aid.

Robredo's latest Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net worth released on May 16 showed a net worth of ₱8,878,111.43 ($177,560) as of December 31, 2016, down from ₱11 million a year ago, due to a legal challenge she is facing in the Supreme Court over the vice presidency.

"My daughter is going on a scholarship. Pero iyong sabi nila, iyong gagastusin daw nung anak ko kasi wala naman daw akong legal na pagkukunan, iyong ninakaw namin na yaman. And you know the viciousness," she said. It is not known how much of her daughter's tuition is covered by scholarship.

[Translation: My daughter is going on a scholarship. They said paying for my daughter's expenses won't be coming from legal means, because it's from stolen wealth. You know the viciousness.]

Related: VP Robredo's 2016 net worth down to ₱8.88M

Robredo also said in her Facebook post she met with the United Way Foundation to explore a possible partnership with her office's anti-poverty program Angat Buhay.

Before the Boston trip, Robredo attended a gala fundraising event of the Filipino American Symphony Orchestra in Los Angeles on June 17 where she was the guest of honor.

As photos of the vice president dressed in formal attire with members of the Filipino-American community circulated on social media, Robredo's critics scored her for leaving the country in the midst of the Marawi crisis, where fighting between government forces and Maute group terrorists continues into its fifth week.

Back in December, Robredo was slammed for leaving on a vacation to the US even as her hometown was battered by a powerful typhoon on Christmas Eve.

Last week, President Rodrigo Duterte was criticized for being out of the public eye for several days because he was "rejuvenating" from his hectic schedule the week before, when he traveled around military camps and hospitals to rally soldiers fighting in Marawi and condoled with the families of fallen soldiers.

Related: Duterte on 5-day absence: I had to go on a secret trip

The Vice President returns to the Philippines on Thursday.