SONA: Aquino recites ills
inherited from Arroyo
Before enumerating his administration’s glowing achievements in the last five years, President Benigno Aquino III reminded Congress on Monday, July 27, the ills of corruption and other economic problems that he had inherited from his predecessor, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
In his sixth and last State of the Nation Address (SONA) before a joint session of the Senate and the House of Representatives at the Batasan Pambansa plenary hall, brought to mind scandals during the Arroyo presidency such as the P728-million fertilizer fund scam, alleged multi-million kickbacks in the multi-billion peso ZTE broadband deal with a Chinese company, the rigging of the 2004 presidential elections, the fictitious Jose Pidal accounts purportedly of former First Gentleman Jose Miguel Arroyo, and midnight appointments.
“Dinatnan natin ang taumbayan na manhid na sa walang humpay na alegasyon ng kasinungalingan, pandaraya at pagnanakaw,” Aquino said in the first few opening paragraphs of his speech that took him two hours and 10 minutes to deliver.
Netizens immediately criticized the President for starting the blame-game too early is his final SONA.
But the President used those starting controversies to demonstrate the improvements done under his administration in the last five years.
“Uninterrupted growth ang ibinida ng ating sinundan sa kanyang huling SONA, pero nang suriin po malaking bahagi pala nito ay galing sa remittances ng mga taong nawalan ng pag-asa sa Pilipinas. Ika nga po: People were voting with their feet,” he added.
He also criticized the previous administration for claiming that it had addressed the backlog of classrooms.
“Ipinagmalaki sa atin, sapat na raw ang mga classrooms, iyon pala umaabot sa apat na shift ang mga klase. May pumapasok ng madilim pa at may umuuwing madilim na pero lahat sila naiwan sa dilim dahil hindi sapat ang oras ng pag-aaral,” he said.
Because of the numerous scandals under the previous administration, Aquino noted: “Noong mga panahong iyon, maski bata, natutunan ang salitang scam.”