Palace urges Pinoys: Listen to SONA on Monday

GMA News Online

Malacañang is urging Filipinos, including former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, to take time out on Monday to at least listen to President Benigno Aquino III's second State of the Nation Address (SONA).

Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte made the call over the weekend amid Arroyo’s reported plan not to show up at the House of Representatives when Aquino delivers the SONA.

“Ang panawagan natin is not for any person in particular but to the nation in general, makinig tayo sa Pangulong Aquino sa Lunes para sa SONA," Valte said on government-run dzRB radio when asked what call the Palace will make to Arroyo.

Valte also echoed presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda’s claim last Friday that the Palace will be indifferent to whether Arroyo attends Monday’s SONA or not.

“It’s a constitutional mandate, as such the president will give his SONA whether there are certain personalities who will be absent or present," Valte said.

Aquino will deliver his SONA before a joint session of Congress Monday afternoon. State-run NBN-4 is to start its SONA coverage at 2 p.m.

Last year, Arroyo did not attend Aquino’s first SONA as she accompanied her husband Jose Miguel to Hong Kong. — LBG, GMA News