Last SONA of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo

Small, yet fierce and firm woman, dressed in her usual terno as she gives one-by-one her so-called achievements during her time as the president of the Republic of the Philippines.

In her last SONA (State of the Nation Address), President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo summarizes her accomplishments despite criticisms from various groups. And instead of giving us the scorecard of the projects she have achieved for the last year, since this will be her last term, she enumerated the long term programs that she started, inherited and finished and together with the policies she have implemented during her term.

On Economy being her strongest asset, she said that inspite of the global crisis brought about by the financial meltdown all over the world, Philippines has managed to maintain and continue its growth.

And I agree with her, while its true that Philippines has merely suffered a decline in growth but still maintain a positive growth rate as compare to its neighboring countries who were experiencing a negative growth rate in GDP.

Still on economy. During her term she cut the debt of the government corporations from 15 % to 7% and foreign debts from 73% to 32%.

This is good news that she managed to cut our foreign debts having been a burden to us every time the foreign currency fluctuated, a debts that’s been a problem since the time of Marcos administration.

On Infrastructure. She claimed that in her administration, we have airports of international standard, upgraded domestic airports, built seaports and the roll on/roll off transport system.

Well what can I say; tourism industry is growing as I’m hearing about it. So these trends could attribute to our better infrastructure projects.

On Education. She cited various development on education, the increase in number of school buildings, teachers, government scholarship grants and the plan to increase college to five years; two pre-university and three professional years.

I disagree with this one. Additional year of College would only lead to the increase of household expenses and is unforgivable at this point of time. Why won’t the government instead put focus by monitoring schools to make sure the quality of being feed to the student?

On cheaper medicines. A good move that will beneficial to the poor and our senior citizen who are in need of maintenance prescription.

On her travels. She reiterated that in her every travels she always brought home foreign investors to strengthen our economy. Encourages OFW to bring more remittances for investments. But unlike other any government officials her travel expenses were always the target of criticism.

On her critics. She had unleashed her acid-tongue by lambasting two of her very vocal critics who both eyeing for presidential election.

A hard worker despite the negative public perceptions, deals the harshest criticisms yet manage to stand on her feet and continue to work, to make Philippines a better place in the face of the planet. And as she bids goodbye, I am proud and convinced, I have made the right decision (ooops ooops ibaba ang mga kilay walang pakialaman ng trip ahahaha). Well, I have voted her to be the president of this country.

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