A group of women working in grassroots communities expressed strong disappointment over P-Noy’s State of the Nation Address which, they said was lacking both in depth and content.
Elizabeth Angsioco, National Chairperson of the Democratic Socialist Women of the Philippines (DSWP) likens President Aquino to a carpenter building a house but without a plan. “He aimlessly keeps on nailing things but has no vision of the house or plan on how the house will be constructed,” said Angsioco.
According to Angsioco, P-Noy’s SONA should have revisited his campaign promises as stated in his ‘Social Contract with the Filipino People.’ He failed to develop a concrete plan on how to achieve the 16 points in the contract, she stressed.
It is lamentable that the roadmap is still missing, Angsioco said. She shared that advocates are frustrated over the deliberate omission of Reproductive Health (RH) and the Freedom of Information (FOI) bills from the SONA. Angsioco stressed that these are crucial issues included in his campaign promises.
“This, we do not understand,” said Angsioco, “P-Noy continues to say in media that he supports RH and Responsible Parenthood bill, but he refuses to translate these statements into concrete action by pushing Congress to pass the bill,” she explains.
Angsioco said that advocates are wary that the non-inclusion of these controversial bills, especially RH, is PNoy’s way of placating the bishops, whom he mentioned and profusely thanked in his speech for unknown reasons.
Moreover, the non-inclusion of these important issues can also be read as a manifestation of his lack of political will. He should actually be able to use his big political capital for these controversial issues but he chose to keep quiet, she continued.
“As far as wang-wang mindset is concerned, this we have to say: isn’t making promises and not fulfilling them also part of it? After all, it’s like making people believe you’re going to do something about their problems but refusing to do it when you are already in power. Isn’t this misuse of political power? If this is so, it would seem like PNoy’s SONA showed us that he is not above the wang-wang mindset– the very thing he fights against,” Angsioco ended. Rhoda Avila, DSWP