Some senators expect 'accurate report' in Sona but others, 'rant and lies' | Inquirer News
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Some senators expect ‘accurate report’ in Sona but others, ‘rant and lies’

/ 04:24 PM July 20, 2018

What do senators expect from President Rodrigo Duterte’s third State of the Nation Address (Sona) on Monday?

Their expectations actually vary widely from “accurate report” to “rant and lies.”

Senator Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, an ally of the President in the Senate, said he expects the president to give an accurate report on the state or condition of the country.

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The former Senate president, Pimentel said he wants to hear from President Duterte his overall philosophy and vision for the country.

Pimentel said he also expects the President to say where he wants the county to go and how to achieve those goals.

‘Rant and lies’

Meanwhile, Opposition Senator Antonio Trillanes IV said he expects the President to “rant and lie to the Filipino people like he always does.”

“Particularly, he would likely create a false bleak scenario for our country to justify the need for Cha-cha (Charter change) and shift to federalism as soon as possible,” Trillanes said.

The senator thinks Duterte will rant about illegal drugs but will be silent on the P 6.4 billion illegal drug shipment from China.

Senator Sonny Angara also expects the president to cite his administration’s efforts in fighting illegal drugs in the country but he hopes that the chief executive would also talk about the laws he signed in the past two years.

“A bit about the last two years and the bills he has signed into law— like free tuition, school feeding, anti-hazing, free irrigation,” Angara said.

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“Perhaps also a bit on the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) and the peace process in Mindanao,” he added.

Congress is expected to ratify the reconciled version of the BOL on Monday in time for Duterte’s Sona. Malacañang said the President will sign the bill into law before his speech.

It is expected that the Bangasamoro Autonomous Region will be one of the centerpieces of the President’s report to the nation.

Opposition Senator Paolo Benigno Aquino IV expressed hopes that Duterte will talk about how to help the poor in their plight amid rising prices of food and services.

“Sana pag-usapan ang mga solusyon sa pagtaas presyo sa SONA ng Pangulo. Suspindihin na itong excise tax sa petrolyo para mabigyan ng ginhawa ang mga pamilyang nalulunod sa gastos,” he said.

“Mula sa puso daw ang SONA ngayon. Sana mula sa isang pusong may malasakit sa mahihirap na Pilipinong nasasagasaan ng mga programa ng gobyerno,” he added.

Aquino appealed to the President to support his measure that seeks to suspend the implementation of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (Train) Law and rollback the prices of goods and services.

“Ang pagbaba ng rating ng Pangulo ay paghingi ng saklolo ng taumbayan sa matinding pabigat ng TRAIN Law at taas-presyo,” he said.   /vvp

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