MANILA, Apr 13 (Mabuhay) — Vice President Leni Robredo bagged the Special Award for Public Service at the People of the Year 2021 virtual awards night on Monday.

Robredo was recognized for her signature anti-poverty program Angat Buhay and the Office of the Vice President’s (OVP) response to COVID-19.

She dedicated the award to those who continue to support and stand alongside her in serving the country.

“From donors to volunteers, to our hardworking staff who go above and beyond in providing service, we have proven that no one makes the way or succeeds alone,” the vice president said in a mix of English and Filipino.

“Our journey towards being a more responsive, more advocacy-driven office geared towards uplifting the lives of our people could only have been possible through a vast consolidation of efforts,” she added.

Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez was also given the Special Award for Public Service for his efforts to reopen the economy in 2020.

Lopez was recognized “for striking a balance between lives and livelihood by adopting smart, responsive strategies for reopening the economy in 2020.”

“My gratitude goes to our president Rodrigo Duterte for the inspiration to always give our best and sincere service to the Filipino people especially the marginalized sectors,” he said.

Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto, meanwhile, was voted by PeopleAsia’s readers as the “People’s Choice Awardee.”

He was recognized for making headlines with his effective COVID-19 response and for being named among 12 International Anticorruption Champions.

“I hope that this award will not only serve as a recognition but also an inspiration to leaders, especially the young ones, of our country to serve truthfully and effectively,” he said in Filipino.

“People of the Year” is an annual roster made by PeopleAsia magazine to honor “extraordinary people in extraordinary times.” (MNS)

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