Sunday, July 22, 2012


By the time this column is published by Asian Journal USA, President Benigno Aquino III would have delivered his SONA (State of the Nation Address) before Congress and the rest of the world.

Except for those that can be verified by objective and independent sources, whatever achievements he would be reporting are expected to be criticized by what my barber calls NAY, NAYing, negativist naysayers.

As someone who always votes AYE to whatever positive reports are published outside of MalacaƱang Palace, I would like to venture my own assessment both objectively and subjectively.


ABS-CBN records, monitors and reports the performance of the PNoy Administration annually as compared to what they have as promises of the latter in their record. The broadcast conglomerate reports that of one hundred two (102) promises, seven (7) have been fulfilled; seventy-eight (78) are being fulfilled; two (2) are stalled; and two (2) were already broken.

The promises broken include the “doubling of the budget of the judiciary”, and “new taxes would not be imposed”. After the ouster of Renato Corona as Chief Justice, and having more aggressive efforts to cleanse the judiciary, I expect that the former’s budget would eventually be increased to render faster and fairer justice.  To fund and speed-up infrastructure, employment generating and poverty alleviation programs, sometimes it becomes necessary to impose new taxes.

The formation of the Truth Commission was stalled because the Supreme Court declared it unconstitutional. I disagreed with the SC decision but I have argued that the Truth Commission was not necessary to serve the ends for which it was being established anyway. The Fiscal Responsibility Bill is also stalled due to Congress inaction. Sometimes, one finds it hard to deliver when its delivery is dependent upon co-equal branches of the government.

The good news is that according to the ABS-CBN ratings, after two years in a fixed six-year term of office, PNoy already fulfilled seven (7) promises, and has started and is progressing towards fulfilling seventy-eight (78) of them.

I am particularly impressed by the conversion of the promises into Programs of Action. In the field of Education, the plan or program to reintroduce and promote technical and vocational education is a welcome move. Efforts to improve science and mathematics education as well as making every child a reader by Grade 1 are commendable.

If PNoy also commits to support online education as a way of enhancing the skills of what I call the “digital natives”, (the young who were born in 1980 and after), the Philippines would have a more informed, enlightened, and educated citizenry.

I am also hopeful about chosen economic programs that are in progress. Some samples include targeting key industries with greatest potential for growth; promoting entrepreneurship; lowering the cost of doing business in the country; investments in the energy sector; and reviewing the policies on agriculture.

PNoy’s health programs for the Filipino people, which are underway, are notable: universal health care within 3 years; increasing health expenditure; improving health infrastructure; and putting up a National Health Development Fund.


The factors against which I base my ratings on PNoy’s performance are traits that could now be supported with some objective realities namely: HONESTY, HUMILITY, HONOR, and HOPE.

Going after corruption in the judiciary by making examples out of the GMA appointees as Chief Justice and Ombudsman; prosecuting GMA and her cohorts for acts inimical to the country’s interest; facilitating the upgrade of the country’s credit ratings several times; generating positive reports on the country’s GDP growth despite the sluggish performance in the other parts of the world; all support the 4Hs that I mentioned.

Based on the State of the Nation as assessed above, I vote AYE!


  1. We are on the right track! Hopefully, no spoilers!

  2. Natural calamities or "Acts of God" would indeed be natural spoilers. But considering that PNoy's governance is based on the 4Hs mentioned above, and as long as he continues to show them, I have faith in Divine Providence to guide him and help him lead our country and the Filipino people to its rightful destiny, thus - preventing and/or lessening the devastating effects of these fortuitous events. The naysayers will always try to "spoil" things, but that is a challenge PNoy and the positivists could easily meet given the commitment, responsibility and resources already made available. Thanks for your comments.