Former Vice President Leni Robredo expressed this on her Instagram post about her reunion with former senator Leila De Lima, who was released on bail after nearly seven years of being in police custody.
Robredo also uploaded pictures of their get-together on her post.
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Robredo detailed how she and De Lima spent their day after years of being separated because of the latter’s detention.
“It was an emotional moment seeing her outside the confines of the PNP Custodial Center. There was a lot of catching up to do. But, first, lunch. She said she was craving for Bicol food so that was what we had,” she wrote.
In her post, Robredo recalled accompanying De Lima to attend to her errands, citing the renewal of her now-expired government identification cards.
She also listened to all the concerns the former Justice Secretary had about her life. These include her five stray cats from Camp Crame and her house chores.
“It was poignant listening to her immediate concerns now. She’s relearning how it is to live in freedom again,” Robredo narrated.
De Lima also thanked Robredo “profusely” throughout this trip. The latter assured her that it was “nothing compared” to the hardships she went through in police custody.
“I went with her everywhere today. She profusely thanked me. Told her, it [was] nothing compared to all the crosses she had to bear to fight for what [was] right. I thanked her for being a pillar of strength and an inspiration for all of us,” she wrote.
De Lima sought for reelection under the Robredo-Pangilinan team in 2022 despite being in police custody.
She was represented by her spokesperson Dino de Leon, who brought a standee version of her in “kakampink” rallies across the country.
When they met
Robredo shared that she was able to meet up with De Lima when the latter decided to pay homage to the Virgin of Peñafrancia in Naga, Camarines Sur, her hometown.
De Lima lives in the municipality of Iriga.
“I was already on the bus bound for Naga when she was finally released. I hoped that I would still be around when she [went] home to Iriga,” Robredo said.
“True enough, she said she was going home the following day and wanted to pay homage to the Virgin of Peñafrancia and visit Archbishop Tirona, who was able to visit her a few times while she was in Camp Crame,” she added.
Robredo was among the key figures personalities who expressed relief and joy after De Lima was granted temporary freedom by the Muntinlupa Regional Trial Court.
“Masaya ako na sa wakas ay namayani ang hustisya at makakapiling na natin nang malaya si Sen Leila. Tagumpay ito hindi lang para sa kaniya, kundi para sa ating bayan,” she posted.
Matagal nating hinintay ang araw na ito, sa pananalig na ang tama at totoo ang palaging mananaig.
Pinatutunayang muli ngayon na walang basehan ang mga paratang laban kay Senator Leila. Ang lahat ng mga paninira at panggigipit na naranasan niya sa loob ng halos pitong taon ay… https://t.co/zpiIkZknwX
— Leni Robredo (@lenirobredo) November 13, 2023
Prior to Robredo, De Lima also spent time with Sen. Risa Hontiveros, who is also considered a key opposition figure in the government.