'Tired of lies', Makabayan solons boycott Duterte's SONA

Published July 26, 2021, 4:51 PM

by Ben Rosario

The Makabayan bloc, composed of six of the staunchest critics of the Duterte administration in the House of Representatives, declared a boycott of the sixth and final State of the Nation Address of President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday, July 26.

Makabayan bloc

In a virtual news conference, the lawmakers said they decided not to waste time and effort attending the SONA event at the Lower House plenary hall to spare them of the lies that Duterte will tell the nation.

“Tiyak na magsisikap si Pang. Duterte mamaya na maglubid ng mga kasinungalingan upang pagtakpan ang napakaraming kapalpakan ng kanyang administrasyon, (For sure, President Duterte will do everything to lie in order to cover up the many failures of his administration),” the opposition solons said in a statement read during the press conference.

The Makabayan bloc is composed of Deputy Minority Leader Carlos Isagani Zarate, Reps. Ferdinand Gaite and Eufemia Cullamat of Bayan Muna; Reps. Arlene Brosas (Gabriela Partylist); France Castro (ACT Teachers Partylist) and Sarah Jane Elago (Kabataan Partylist).

The group listed as unacceptable Duterte’s failure to end the so-called “endo” system of employment, his inability to address alleged “bullying” of fishermen by the Chinese military even within the country’s exclusive economic zone and the ineffective distance education program.

The Makabayan solons said the death of thousands of Filipinos suspected of being drug users or pushers have remained unsolved, with the families of victims denied justice.

The inept anti-pandemic response of government, its failure to assure enough anti-COVID 19 vaccines and inability to address the economic collapse will also be covered up in Duterte’s SONA, the opposition solon said.

“Tiyak din na maglalatag siya ng mga (He will surely present) phantasmic basis para sa unconstitutional niyang pangarap na (for his unconstitutional goal of) Duterte Dynasty,” the solon stated.

According to them if there were successes the Duterte administration had accomplished, these would be the deteriorating level of poverty, massive employment and worsening corruption in the government.