The “Global Health Crisis” President



President Rodrigo Roa Duterte delivered to the Filipinos more than three hours of his 6th State of the Nation Address (SONA) last Monday, July 26. This SONA is supposed to be his last as his term of office is ending this year. Unlike the State of the Nation addresses of past Presidents before the joint session of Congress, this time it was on a blended platform (live and via zoom call), and by invitation to designated members of the House and the Senate, and some guests including the Diplomatic Corps. Except for some instances where he veered away from his prepared speech and spoke in our native language, the President narrated what he felt was his accomplishments during the past year in his term of office. From his speech, it would seem that he considers the war against drugs, the fight against criminality and his anti-corruption drive as his major accomplishments. To his credit, the audience did not hear any foul language from him. It will be remembered that his street language during his campaign won him the Presidency.


He also cites the raise of salaries of uniformed personnel as one distinct hallmark of his Presidency, and called for the passage of the military pension reform bill and free legal assistance for police and soldiers. Print and broadcast media reports have it that among those who did not personally come to the SONA who attended via zoom was Vice President Leni Robredo, whom President Duterte looked for in the course of his opening remarks. Officials of the House and the Senate have mixed reviews of the SONA, with some lauding the President and others saying that his speech was filled with half-truths. This writer believes that it was a fair and faithful assessment of what he has done for our people and the nation at large during his incumbency, albeit a lot of the things he had pointed out were barely substantiated.


President Duterte will be remembered in history as the President who led the country amidst a global health crisis. His last year in office and the government’s continuing response to the pandemic will spell the difference whether his Presidency would be favorably assessed by the Filipino people or not.


TRIVIA:


Congratulations to Hidilyn Diaz for bringing singular honor and prestige to our country in garnering the Gold Medal in Weightlifting at the Olympics in Tokyo, Japan. This is the first time after so many decades that our country has had an Olympic Gold Medalist.


Greetings and congratulations to Rev. Fr. Fidel Mamerto Bagayawa on the occasion of his 40th Sacerdotal Anniversary last Tuesday July 27th.


Congratulations also to the in-coming officers of the Knights of Columbus. Mons. Jorge Barlin Assembly, on the occasion of their Installation this coming Saturday, July 31st at the MJBA hall at 3pm. VIVAT JESUS!


QUOTATION OF THE WEEK:


“A GREAT LEADER TAKES PEOPLE WHERE THEY DON’T NECESSARILY WANT TO GO, BUT OUGHT TO BE” - ROSALYNN CARTER


FOR OUR WORD OF LIFE:


“A RULER WHO LACKS UNDERSTANDING IS A GREAT OPPRESSOR” -PROVERBS 28:16