President Rodrigo Duterte’s 5th State of the Nation Address Highlights

If you missed President Rodrigo Duterte’s 5th State of the Nation Address (SONA) on live TV, here are some of the quotes from his speech earlier.

The president first addressed the COVID-19 pandemic and expressed his sympathy with the families of those who died from the coronavirus disease.

“Our dream of prosperity for our country was suddenly stopped by a pandemic, a virulent virus, no nation was spared.”

“We share the grief of their families and no amount of tears can compensate for their great losses.”

Duterte went on with his speech to tackle ABS-CBN’s shutdown.

“There are those who take advantage of a preoccupied government. One of them is Senator Franklin Drilon.”

“Media is a powerful tool in the hands of the oligarchs like the Lopezes who use it for their battles with political figures.”

“I am a casualty of the Lopezes during the 2016 election.”

He also brought up the country’s current state in the ‘war on drugs’ amidst the pandemic.

“The dealers of illegal drugs hiding in the shadow of COVID-19 have stepped up their activities, the amount of shabu valued at millions of pesos seized at police operations speaks volumes of the enormity of the problem we bear.”

“The profiteers, overpricers, and corrupt fellows must be happy now, but not for long. They can’t outrun the long arm of the law.”

Duterte then quoted former President Ramon Magsaysay, “We need men of integrity and faith like Rizal and Del Pilar, men of action like Bonifacio, men of inflexible patriotism like Mabini.”

“If we allow greed, self-interest, and ambition to rule us, we will be left with nothing better than the lesser evil instead of the greater good.”

Moreover, the president talked about ongoing government programs.

“Over 4.3 million families benefited from the Pantawid Pamilya program. Over 92.3 million received subsidies under the cash transfer program.”

“We made tertiary education, universal healthcare, public utility drivers were given assistance through Pantawid Pasada.”

“There are complaints that some drivers did not receive any assistance at all. I had directed the DSWD and DILG to look into this.”

Regarding the Sangguniang Kabataan elections, Malasakit Centers Act, Salary Standardization Law, and the establishment of the National Academy of Sports, here’s what Duterte said:

“I welcome the passage of the law postponing of the Sangguniang Kabataan elections.”

“The Malasakit Centers has proven to be a great help to our less fortunate citizens. There are 75 centers serving Filipinos all over the country. They will be of great help in ensuring that people remain healthy and resilient during these times.”

“I hope this law [Salary Standardization Law] will inspire government workers to perform better and encourage young, brilliant minds to join the government.”

“We can now give deserving student-athletes the training and support they need,” the president said after he lauded the passage of a law establishing National Academy of Sports.

He then addressed the business community in the country.

“We assure you [of] the ease of doing business. Improving frontline processes is moving. We will remove over-regulation.”

“Our fiscal position is strong, fiscal management prudent, banking system robust. We are in a better position to weather the pandemic.”

Duterte segued to the significant infrastructure accomplishments under the Build, Build, Build, program, and promised to release a printed report of the administration’s achievements.

He then continued his speech promising to fight for human rights.

“We want to end the discrimination of people based on age, ethnicity, gender identity, and other character traits.”

“My administration always believes that freedom from illegal drugs, terrorism, corruption, and criminality is itself a human right”

“We will not dodge our obligation to fight for human rights.”

“Part of our efforts to uphold human rights is the protection of the rights of children and the right against discrimination.”

“Last year, I signed EO 92 creating the National Council Against Child Labor.”

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