Focus on positivity
Published by the Visayan Daily Star Publications, Inc.
|NINFA R. LEONARDIA|
Editor-in-Chief & President
NIDA A. BUENAFE
MAJA P. DELY
ANTONIO L. LEONARDIA|
The State of the Nation Address of President Benigno Aquino III was one of the longest in recent history, taking almost an hour and a half but the early consensus is that it was also one of the better and more positive SONA’s of his three-year-old presidency.
Although he still touched on it, he did not dwell so much on the sins of the past administration, but instead, focused on the gains that the Philippine government under his leadership has achieved. He cited the successive credit rating upgrades, the record-breaking performance of the Philippine Stock Exchange Index, and the higher than expected first quarter GDP growth figures, as proof that our economy is on the upswing. He revealed figures that provided rosy outlooks in terms of unemployment, foreign direct investments and tourism. And he proudly bared his administration’s truly impressive accomplishments in addressing chronic shortages in schools, hospitals, the police and military that many of us have, over the years, assumed were problems that were too much for any administration to handle.
Of course, as with all SONAs, there were issues and sectors that didn’t get the attention they wanted or even deserved from the President. The SONA could have given PNoy the opportunity to make his stand known regarding festering, yet important issues such as the Freedom of Information bill, the Reproductive Health bill, and even Charter Change; but since he has probably realized by now that he can never really make everybody happy, he focused on the positives instead.
The tone of this year’s SONA was indeed positive and many of the facts and figures our President presented in his speech were not only detailed and easily verifiable, but they also provided some inspiration to a people who have long been used to disappointment. If he found a way for all Filipino policemen to finally be properly armed, if he was able to acquire ships, helicopters, and fighter jets for the long suffering military, then maybe he can make good on his promise to provide books and classrooms for all the poor students of this country, and, maybe, his Tourism secretary is not just boasting when he says he can increase tourism arrivals to 10 million a year by 2016.
When our President delivers his SONA every fourth Monday of July, he can never make everybody happy. There will always be those who will find something wrong in everything that has been and can be achieved. Let us all remember that while it is the President who delivers his version of the State of the Nation, it takes the cooperation of an entire country to build a nation. A little positivity can go a long way, especially for a country that has been down in the dumps for far too long.*