"..a bardy view!"

Aquino SONA

"We have 36,000 nautical miles of shoreline, but only 32 boats. These boats are as old as the time of MacArthur"

In his first State of the Nation Address (SONA) the new President of the Philippines, Benigno S. Aquino III, has entered the arena with all guns blazing.

His speech grasped prickly thorns which will provide hope for many and cause a corrupt minority to start checking their passports and Swiss bank accounts for a potentially hasty exit.

His "forked road" speech leads to the welfare of the people in one direction, and to the personal political interests of a few in the other. There is but one path.

It was an outstanding address. The blame upon the previous administration, the corruption, the misuse of funds, the blatant disregard of the needs of the people, the outrageous indignity imposed upon the citizens, the encouragement to send them overseas as cash cows, the failure to find political and peaceful settlement in the south – all were major indictments against failed policies which diminished his country in the eyes of the world.

For the first time a President has stood up and said "Look, this country has been governed by some absolute shitheads for the past ten years, and we have got to do something about it."

Well, I don't quote him verbatim, but that's what he meant.

He remarked that rice stockpiling has been taking place over many years, yet over 500,000 metric tons have become rotten in storage whilst four million of his subjects can barely afford to eat one meal a day. This waste resulted in the National Food Authority (NFA) creating a debt of 177 billion pesos, money which could have funded the entire judiciary and all the classrooms which the country needs.

Money was there to be wasted he remarked. Such was the waste and profligacy there are no funds for education, infrastructure, health, military, police and more.

He was clear when he said that the Philippines has more than it's fair share of natural disasters, but proper land management and correct use of emergency funds should be able to limit the damage and suffering. Why, he asked, when emergency relief is available, does it always arrive too late? What happens to the money? Where does it go?

It was an inspiring speech which will give hope for millions. He is hopeful that this new government will restore confidence from the global community, encourage public and private partnerships, sound investment and restore pride to his people. He seeks an end to conflict and recognises that quality of life is the key to peace and harmony.

He is a visionary, but hopefully not just a dreamer. He recognises that infrastructure is the key to make the Philippines a tourist destination of safety and renown.

This will create jobs, and along with other key industries and sound management of natural resources may prevent the exodus of Filipinos from seeking work overseas.

His predecessor Gloria Macapagal Arroyo believed that the overseas workers were the investors and promoted the concept beyond all reason. It was a huge mistake. Pride must inevitably be restored.

He concluded:

"The situation is not what it was before; we can all dream again. Let us all become one in achieving a fulfilment of our hopes and aspirations for our country. Maraming Salamat Po!"

This man has the support of the masses. Its a generation since his mother set off the People Power revolution against Marcos in 1986.

Perhaps it really is the dawn of a new age.

Click here for the full English transcript of the SONA


July 28, 2010 - Posted by | Current Affairs, Education, Politics, The Philippines, Travel | , , , ,


  1. Good luck to you all and I mean that sincerely.


    Comment by spook | July 28, 2010 | Reply

  2. I would relish another post explaining to me what exactly are the ‘rebels’ and what is the fighting (if any) about?


    Comment by spook | July 28, 2010 | Reply

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