What we want to hear from Sona

Sun Star Bacolod - - Opinion -

PRES­I­DENT Ro­drigo Duterte’s State of the Na­tion Ad­dress (Sona) is less than a week away. Many Filipinos are ex­cited as to what the Pres­i­dent will report in his Sona. What many of us want to hear is the re­sults of the many pro­grams and ef­forts of the govern­ment.

One of the top­ics that peo­ple would want to hear about is the govern­ment’s plans on the West Philip­pine Sea. At present, it is quite clear that not many are happy with the govern­ment’s ef­forts on as­sert­ing our rights on what is ours.

While the govern­ment has made pre­vi­ous state­ments on its ef­forts on ex­ert­ing our rights in the West Philip­pine Sea, we have yet to see any re­sults.

How­ever, the Mala­cañang did say that diplo­matic ne­go­ti­a­tions are still the best course in re­solv­ing the sea dis­pute. We hope that the govern­ment can give ad­di­tional details on this or its stance on the West Philip­pine Sea dis­pute dur­ing the Pres­i­dent’s Sona.

We also want to hear a bet­ter strat­egy on the cam­paign against il­le­gal drugs. While the govern­ment has re­futed the claims of around 20,000 deaths as a re­sult of its “drug war”, the 6,600 sus­pected drug per­son­al­i­ties who have been killed in law en­force­ment op­er­a­tions from July 2016 to May 2019 is still a large num­ber. This is the sta­tis­tics pro­vided by the Philip­pine Na­tional Po­lice in June.

The govern­ment has made mul­ti­ple prom­ises that will curb the drug prob­lem in the coun­try in the “x”

num­ber of years or months. Well, that did not turn out well. Il­le­gal drugs con­tinue to pro­lif­er­ate in the coun­try and the anti-il­le­gal drug cam­paign con­tin­ues to be bloody.

What we want to hear from the govern­ment now is an im­proved cam­paign on its fight against il­le­gal drugs. One that would not be bloody. The govern­ment can­not keep on de­fend­ing the po­lice each time a child dies in their op­er­a­tions. Maybe a “drug war” is not a so­lu­tion to the il­le­gal drug prob­lem in the coun­try.

We also want to know bet­ter ef­forts or what has been done to fine cor­rup­tion within the govern­ment. While we com­mend the re­moval of cor­rupt of­fi­cials, cor­rup­tion is still em­bed­ded within the govern­ment sys­tem.

The ad­min­is­tra­tion of Pres­i­dent Duterte has made strides in the last three years. We ac­knowl­edge all the ac­com­plish­ments and changes that the govern­ment has made. How­ever, there is still a lot of work that has yet to be done.

The ones that we men­tioned are just the tip of the ice­berg. There are still a lot of is­sues the govern­ment will con­tin­u­ally have to solve like the poverty sit­u­a­tion, ed­u­ca­tion sys­tem, en­vi­ron­men­tal prob­lems, and la­bor prob­lems, among many oth­ers.

We hope the Sona will shed light on what is be­ing done to the dif­fer­ent prob­lems the coun­try is fac­ing. We also hope the Sona will give us a sil­ver lin­ing to th­ese prob­lems.-ss­davao

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