House expects SONA to focus on accomplishments & pro-people goals of Duterte admin

House members are looking forward to the second State of the Nation Address (SONA) of President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday, which they expect to focus on the accomplishments and the pro-people plans and programs of the administration.

House Deputy Speaker and Cebu Third District Rep. Gwendolyn Garcia said the President will be reporting on the accomplishments of the Duterte administration for its first year and the direction it will take on.

President Duterte will definitely present the administration's focus and direction henceforth, as a signal for Congress to align its priority measures in keeping with the President's agenda for the people and the nation, said Garcia.

Rep. Joel Mayo Almario (2nd District, Davao Oriental), a member of the Commission on Appointments (CA), said the President will surely talk about having curtailed the drug problem, emphasizing on the apprehensions including those killed.

The President will acknowledge it was almost an impossible task, citing the return of the syndicates inside the Bilibid. We expect him to declare he won't stop doing what he has to do, said Almario.

As to the total peace and order situation, Almario said the President may cite intelligence reports and expound on the Marawi experience.

Almario said the President may take the SONA event as an opportunity for him to thank Congress for approving on Saturday his request to extend until December 31, 2017 the martial law in Mindanao as it is needed to address the Marawi issue and attacks of other rebel groups.

Almario said the President might also express his displeasure with the New People's Army for wanting a peace agreement but continuing to attack government troops and threaten them with the cancellation of the peace talks.

The President may also drum up the balance of allies he made between Russia and China, according to Almario.

Almario said the President may also thank the people for his high approval ratings but will emphasize ratings do not matter to him.

Rep. Reynaldo Umail (2nd District, Oriental Mindoro), chairman of the committee on justice, said he expects President Duterte to focus on the achievements and plans of the government.

"These include peace and order, not only in Mindanao, but the whole country; war versus illegal drugs, criminality and corruption; poverty and unemployment; health; food security; and criminal justice system reform," said Umali.

Rep. Winston Castelo (2nd District, Quezon City), chairman of the House committee on Metro Manila development, said the SONA will paint a bright picture of the country because of President Duterte's inspiring leadership.

President Duterte's inspiring leadership contributed greatly in attaining national discipline, work ethics in the bureaucracy and international recognition. These factors resulted in a robust economy coupled with massive infrastructure development never seen before, said Castelo.

Castelo said the outstanding leadership of House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez and Majority Leader Rodolfo FariAas made sure the legislative agenda of the President is attained without delay. SONA will show we are better off by leaps and bounds, said Castelo.

Earlier, Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Martin Andanar said the theme of SONA is A comfortable life for all Filipinos with focus on prosperity for all, law and order, and peace.

Source: House of Representatives

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