Youth leader likens SONA to loud yet empty 'wang-wang'

25 July 2011

By KC Santos

QUEZON CITY, METRO MANILA – For Kabataan Party-list Representative Raymond Palatino,  President Aquino's State of the Nation Address (SONA) is nothing unlike loud yet empty “wang-wang” or siren sounds.

In his second SONA, President Aquino mentioned how his anti-'wang wang' approach (wang-wang and its use is associated with abusive officials) has changed the face of local governance since he assumed office last year.

But Palatino criticized the President's speech as reminiscent of the wang-wang mentality the latter is looking to curb.

“The gut issues of the people were evaded to give way to all his proud claims on the supposed achievements of the administration. I cannot help but perceive all his talk against 'wangwang' as a stratagem to cover up the fundamental issues,” he said.

Palatino’s sentiments echo those by militant groups, who held protests outside of Congress during today's SONA, who expected Aquino to address issues like the Hacienda Luisita dispute, oil price hikes and the intervention of foreign parties on issues pertaining to sovereignty.

“President Aquino warned against repeating past mistakes as a hindrance to progress and development,” Palatino noted. “But listening closely to his speech, he intends to merely follow the same-old policies of past administrations.”

Palatino also questioned Aquino's silence on issues like the passage of the Freedom of Information Act, a proposed law on government transparency that could very well enforce his anti-corruption stance.

“One year into his term, it is worth asking why former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is yet to be persecuted?. P-Noy (Aquino) should do well to remember that action speaks louder than words.”

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