MANILA, Philippines – President Aquino on Monday trumpeted the accomplishments of his government in the past 2 years, saying that nothing is impossible once the Filipino people realize that they are the boss.
“Heto po ang aking natutuhan sa dalawampu't limang buwan ng pagka-pinuno: Walang imposible. Walang imposible dahil kung nakikita ng taumbayan na sila ang tanging boss ng kanilang pamahalaan, bubuhatin ka nila, gagabayan ka nila, sila mismo ang mamumuno tungo sa makabuluhang pagbabago,” he said in his State of the Nation Address (SONA).
Aquino’s SONA, his 3rd since being elected in 2010, lasted over an hour and a half and was interrupted more than 100 times with applause. The loudest applause came after the President urged Congress to pass the Responsible Parenthood Bill, Malacanang’s own version of the controversial reproductive health bill.
True to his word, the President had no “Lenny Skutniks” or special guests similar to Mang Pandoy of former President Ramos or the “bangkang papel boys” of former President Arroyo to symbolize how he will accomplish his promises.
Instead, Aquino recited a long list of his administration’s accomplishments, and praised members of his own Cabinet and other government officials for a job well done.
Among the accomplishments he mentioned in the SONA are: a record 6.4% GDP growth in the first quarter of 2012, record performances of the stock market, rising tourist arrivals and record high increase in coco water exports.
He also answered critics who said that his “daang matuwid” and good governance drive would not benefit the poor.
He described fiscal management under the previous administration as like “the wild West” where “one hand would shake your hand while the other would ask for a bribe.”
He said that under his administration, leaks in the system due to corruption have been plugged and tax collections have risen,.
“Hanggang ngayon mayroon pa rin pong mangilan-ngilang nagtatanong: nakakain ba ang mabuting pamamahala? Ang simpleng sagot: Siyempre,” he said.
“Dahil maayos ang paggugol ng gobyerno, walang tagas sa sistema. Dahil maayos ang pangongolekta ng buwis, lumalago ang kaban ng bayan. Bawat pisong nakokolekta, tiyak ang pupuntahan: Piso itong diretso sa kalsada, piso para sa bakuna, piso para sa classroom at upuan, piso para sa ating kinabukasan.”
“Ang matatag at malakas na ekonomiyang pinanday ng mabuting pamamahala ang pinakamabisang kalasag laban sa mga hamon na kinakaharap ng daigdig. Dalawang taon po nating binaklas ang mga balakid sa pag-unlad, at ngayon, tayo na lang mismo ang makapipigil sa ating sariling pag-angat.”
Click here for the English translation of Aquino's SONA 2012
Click here for Aquino's SONA in Filipino