President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo delivers.(Opinion &Amp; Editorial)

Manila Bulletin, July 23, 2002 | Go to article overview

President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo delivers.(Opinion &Amp; Editorial)


Byline: NELLY FAVIS-VILLAFUERTE

FOR about an hour, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo (P/GMA) delivered her second State-of-theNation Address (SONA) before a joint session of Congress last Monday afternoon at about 4:00 o'clock at the Batasang Pambansa. Attired in an elegant and attractive orange gown, the lady president delivered her second SONA with stately confidence. From the time President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo started delivering her SONA up to the time she concluded her speech, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo was in her best element. Her facial expression, her eye movement and her resonant voice - all were in harmony to produce a vibrant delivery by President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo of her second SONA.

At the start of her SONA, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo quoted her father, the late President Diosdado Macapagal: "No president can build the whole edifice of a nation. All that he is called upon to do is add a fine stone to that edifice, so that those who shall come after him may add other fine stones that will go for a strong and enduring structure."

To these memorable words of her beloved father and mentor, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo added: "My countrymen, the fine stone I should like to add to the edifice of our nation right above the stone of social justice that my father left behind is a strong republic."

A heartwarming introduction of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's SONA. It touches a special cord in our hearts. Considering the reverence we have for our parents.

At one point in her speech, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo said jokingly: "I cannot grow taller but I can always get better." This immediately elicited a delightful response from the audience. A warm and lengthy applause.

President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo did not just report a list of general accomplishments. Far from it. The accomplishments mentioned were detailed and measurable ones. President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo took a bold stand when she promised in her first SONA more than a year ago to accomplish specific measurable targets. One and one half years later, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo proudly tells the nation in her second SONA that she has substantially fulfilled her promises she made in her first SONA (85 percent of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's targets in her first SONA were accomplished).

Here are some of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's targets in her first SONA vis-a-vis her second SONA accomplishments:

* distribution of 250,000 hectares of land for the land reform program versus the 200,000 hectares she promised;

* allocation of 24 billion pesos versus the promised 20 billion pesos for agricultural modernization;

* distribution of land to 180,000 urban poor families versus the target 150,000 families;

* provision of health insurance to 4 million poor Filipinos versus the targeted 500,000 beneficiaries. …

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