Sunday, July 26, 2009

President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's 2009 SONA

Tomorrow will be President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's last State of the Nation Address (SONA).

Although some people could be wondering what her ninth and final SONA speech will talk about, I already have an idea that it won't contain any surprises. It is after all a valedictory SONA, the last of a long line of SONAs which began in 2001 when Macapagal Arroyo first came to power after usurping authority from President Joseph Estrada.

The only surprise (which really doesn't qualify as a surprise at all since some sectors opposed to Macapagal Arroyo are expecting it) would be if the President revealed that some move that would allow her to maintain her hold on power beyond the one term allowed for Presidents under the 1987 Constitution.

Most likely, and predictably, part of Macapagal Arroyo's last SONA speech will contain references to the accomplishments of her administration. You can already see some elements of the speech on Metro Manila's roads.

Driving through Quezon Avenue on my way to SM City's The Block to pick up my kid's pictures at Picaboo, my wife and I couldn't help but see the large tarpaulin banners festooned on the elevated walkways spanning across this major street.

One was saying that the Macapagal-Arroyo Administration put up thousands of retail stores for the masses, another announced that 14,000 mini-drug stores were opened, and the one that really got to me was the claim that millions of scholarships were given way by her administration.

I wonder who is going to be enterprising enough to check if they are true?

I'll try my best to spot one of the thousands of retail stores, mini-drug stores, and even look for one of the millions of students that were given scholarships by the Arroyo Administration.

Then again, what would be the point? Would it be to prove that the Arroyo Administration has lied again? What would be new about that?

She was sworn in as President on the false assumption that President Joseph Estrada was no longer the legitimate leader of the land.

In 2002, she gave a speech on Rizal Day saying that she would not run for President in 2004 and here's an excerpt of that speech.
"In view of all these factors, I have decided not to run for president during the elections of 2004. If I were to run, it would require a major political effort on my part. But since I am among the principal figures in the divisive national events of the last two or three years, my political efforts can only result in never ending divisiveness. On the other hand, relieved of the burden of politics, I can devote the last year and a half of my administration to the following: First, strengthening the economy, to create more jobs, and to encourage business activity that is unhampered by corruption and red tape in government. Second, healing the deep divisions within our society. Third, working for clean and honest elections in 2004."

President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo
Baguio City
December 30, 2002

In 2004, President Macapagal Arroyo RAN for office and was said to have won by 1 Million votes -- which later turnout out to be another lie. This was exposed through the Hello Garci scandal.

The Hello Garci scandal (2005—present) (or just Hello Garci) is a political scandal and electoral crisis in the Philippines.

The scandal involves incumbent president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, who allegedly rigged the 2004 national election in her favor. The official results of that election gave Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and Noli de Castro the presidency and vice-presidency, respectively. Hundreds of national and local positions were also contested during this election.

The scandal and crisis began in June 2005 when audio recordings of a phone call conversation between President Arroyo and then Election Commissioner Virgilio Garcillano allegedly talking about the rigging of the 2004 national election results, were released to the public. This escalated, when the minority of the lower house of Congress attempted to impeach Arroyo. This was blocked by Arroyo's coalition in September 2005.[1] No trial has taken place thus far.

Allegations against Arroyo and her accomplices in government are many, including electoral fraud and a subsequent cover-up. The administration has denied some of the allegations and challenged others in court.

The House of Representatives, which is dominated by Arroyo's coalition allies, blocked attempts for an impeachment trial. Arroyo's most well-known alleged accomplice from the electoral commission, Virgilio Garcillano, was missing for a few months, but has returned to the capital in late 2005.

Allegations persist regarding possible conspirators from the government who helped in his escape, and another alleged cover-up. Garcillano denied any wrongdoing, before his disappearance, and after his return.

In December 2006, Garcillano was cleared of perjury charges by the Department of Justice.

-- Wikipedia on Hello Garci
For sure, there were other lies told throughout President Macapagal Arroyo's term and I can't remember them all. Then again, the biggest lie would be that we are actually better off than we were at the start of her first term as President.

Just consider this speech delivered after being sworn in as President in 2001.

On many occasions, I have given my views on what our program of government should be. This is not the time or place to repeat them all. However, I can tell you that they converge on four core beliefs.

1. We must be bold in our national ambitions, so that our challenge must be that within this decade, we will win the fight against poverty.

2. We must improve moral standards in government and society, in order to provide a strong foundation for good governance.

3. We must change the character of our politics, in order create fertile ground for true reforms. Our politics of personality and patronage must give way to a new politics of party programs and process of dialogue with the people.

4. Finally, I believe in leadership by example. We should promote solid traits such as work ethic and a dignified lifestyle, matching action to rhetoric, performing rather than grandstanding.

Did she succeed or not?

I'd say, she failed.

But thanks for the revitalized PNR though and thank you for getting rid of the squatters along the riles.

1 comment:

anna said...

Yes! She failed big time... Flunked the morality test, the truth test, the honesty test, the leadership test... the only test she passed is the crappiest liar test and the most putrid female political hustler test.

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