MANILA - Former President Fidel Ramos urged the media to appreciate President Aquino’s efforts for the country as he described what it is like to be the president.
“Let us appreciate what the President and other officials are doing,” Ramos told journalists at the 18th Community Press Awards of the Philippine Press Institute (PPI) in Pasay City on Thursday.
Ramos said national leaders had envisioned a government to protect their inalienable and fundamental rights to liberty, equality and pursuit of happiness; while Filipinos today continue to clamor for independence from poverty and bad governance.
Ramos likened the President of the Philippines, especially incumbent President Aquino, to a juggler, balancing in the air and keeping aloft at least 10 balls representing the country’s problems while on a high wire.
“As Chief Executive and Commander-in-Chief, he must perform with greater agility and skills than the ordinary juggler whose feet are on the ground. Our President must juggle the sizzling potatoes while on the high wire 100 meters up, handling, catching, managing them in calm, harmonious and coordinated manner – and not drop any in the process,” Ramos said.
He said the President must not fall off from uncoordinated movements, panic or lack of focus.
Failure to accomplish those feats, Ramos said, would send the whole nation crashing with him. “That’s how difficult it is to be on the hot seat or a pressure cooker called Malacañang,” he said.
Ramos said the President and his officials are always under pressure from the media and the people, including senior citizens like him.
He said the problems kept on coming. Ramos encouraged everyone to “instead of putting more holes on the ship, let us help in plugging those holes.”
With regards to policies of the government, Ramos said “there is no need to quarrel which is better.”
Ramos also noted the transition in leadership, noting that if a new leader is elected, he or she must get the support from everyone, including predecessors.
“This is the country team concept – one country-one team – regardless of political affiliation or ethnic origin and religious faith,” Ramos said.