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PIA Press Release

President Aquino pledges honest governance in SONA

Manila (26 July) -- President Benigno Simeon Aquino III in his first State of the Nation Address (SONA) pledged an honest government that will guarantee a peaceful and progressive nation under his administration as cabinet officials received marching orders to go after the corrupt and the violators.

As expected, he exposed anomalies of the previous government that made huge spending while income was low contributing to a bloated budget deficit that now stands at P196.7B.

The overspending reached P45.1Bthat was made amidst a collection shortfall of P23.8B.

He also lashed at the massive spending of the Manila Waterworks and Sewerage System that gave fat bonuses to its officials and employees while the rest of the people suffer from lack of water. Some are earning as much as P2.5 million a year.

He also denounced the malpractice of the previous administration on funding insignificant projects that left little budget to finance the current needs of the country.

President Aquino pledged to further investigate and correct irregularities taking place in the DPWH, NAPOCOR, NFA, MRT and other government offices.

He vowed to crush smugglers, tax evaders and wrongdoers by filing charges against them every week and will soon sign an Executive Order that will set the Truth Commission on the road seeking facts and evidences on the shady dealings of the past administration.

On red tape, he said doing business with the government will now be shortened and cited a transaction that before require 30 documents but is now cut to six and eight application forms that is now down to only one form.

He urged Local Government Units to do the same to allow the growth of business and make every LGUs attractive to investments.

Furthermore, he asked the cooperation of both the senate and the congress to help him pass reform bills that would speed up development in many sectors of the country.

Among those laws include whistle blower bill, procurement law, and the strengthening of the witness protection program.

He opened doors for peace and negotiation with the MILF that may start after the Ramadan.

President Aquino also dared the CPP-NPA-NDF to offer a proposition by which their group and the government can work on and not just criticism.

"If you are also aiming or peace, we are ready for a lasting ceasefire. Are you also ready for this? Let's talk." (PIA-LOL) [top]

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