DAVAO CITY, Philippines — Progressive groups in the City called the fourth State of the Nation Address (SONA) of President Rodrigo Duterte as lacking and scripted.
“We are disappointed. For us, the progressive groups under the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN), many elements were lacking in the 4th SONA of the President. It was deficient,” Secretary General of Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU)-Southern Mindanao Region Carlo Olalo said in an interview.
“The labor union monitored how the President, in his SONA, addressed the issue on contractualization and the implementation of the fixed national minimum wage,” Olalo said.
According to Olalo, the President failed to mention the workers’ situation and issues.
Olalo also said that while the President said they have helped farmers, it was through the coco levy fund which is still a form of a loan.
“He also did not mention the Martial Law in Mindanao despite the calls of the progressive groups to lift it especially since there are 96 political killings already reported,” he said.
Olalo said that the two-year Martial Law did not help to lower the incidents of insurgency, terrorism, nor develop peace and order.
He further emphasized that Duterte’s statement that six million Filipinos have gotten out from poverty is a false claim.
“Many of the Filipinos are still unemployed. Even if others have jobs, a large percentage of them are contractual workers. The prices of goods never stopped increasing but our salaries have not gone up,” he said.
Duterte’s statements, according to Olalo are also vague.
“When the President said he will not stop until he reaches the finish line, we are doubtful about what he means here. Is he referring to the finish line as the end of his term or the accomplishment of the tasks given to him by two imperialist country – the US and the China, which he clearly serves,” Olalo said.
Olalo also said that they are disappointed with how Duterte continues to defend the domination of China in the country while making the country’s natural resources collateral for the loans the Chinese government grants. (davaotoday.com)