SONA 2017 Review: "Candour gives wings to strength."
The motto of the Earl of Belvedere is apt to describe the second State of the Nation (SONA) speech of President Duterte.
Riding high on an 82% approval rating, candor translated what would have been a boring presidential speech into an actual conversation.
For the second straight SONA we have been treated to the straight, if not slightly rambling talk, focused this time on his frustrations with inept government, warnings against noncompliant miners, his requests for the passage of the national land use act and comprehensive tax reform program and his calling out of the courts over numerous debilitating TROs.
Of course, there is still the "unrelenting" call to destroy drugs, and the need to create peace to spur economic growth.
There were details, with each focal point punctuated by a candid anecdote or story explaining why such a request is warranted or necessary.
After all, a SONA is not meant to be a national situationer, but a public revelation of accomplishments of the previous year and his call to legislators to create the conditions to push his priority legislation to build more accomplishments.
This candour is what separates him from his predecessors, and encourages people to watch his SONA speech in public parks like no other president before him.
Many asked about his SONA speeches feel that the President was talking to them. There is that connection facilitated by candor and sincerity.
In truth, no other presidency has been so scrutinized in its first year. PNOys first year was rather uneventful save for the Luneta hostage taking.
Of course, while majority are satisfied with his performance, there are nonetheless those who are not satisfied enough, yet conceding the much he accomplished.On the other hand, there are those who will never be satisfied.
Nontheless, accomplishments are notable, he remains popular and strong, yet much needs to be done. That is humbly said with all candor.