NOTHING is impossible, said President Benigno Aquino III last Monday during his third State of the Nation Address, while demonstrating in the same speech that certain things are just not possible in an Aquino SONA.
Apparently it’s not possible for Mr. Aquino to mention “Human Rights violations,” “extrajudicial killings,” “Freedom of Information,” “Ampatuan Massacre,” “the killing of journalists” or even “Reproductive Health” in his address. And it’s probably not because of the limitations of his vocabulary.
EXPECT President Benigno Aquino III to be extra enthusiastic during his State of the Nation Address on Monday in reporting what his administration did about corruption in his second year in office. But expect him too to be silent about the Freedom of Information bill, the Ampatuan massacre, the killing of journalists and media workers, and the state of human rights in these isles of dread.
It’s almost certain he’ll remind us of the removal through impeachment of former Supreme Court Justice Renato Corona, the corruption charges that have been filed against former Arroyo administration officials, and the charges of electoral fraud and plunder against Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo herself.
HE hasn’t asked for them, not yet anyway, but he did say he might: request United States spy planes to monitor the Scarborough Shoal and Spratlys areas of the South China (Western Philippine) Sea.
President Benigno Aquino III told the Reuters news agency last week that because the Philippines doesn’t have aircraft with the capability to monitor those areas, “We might be requesting (the US for) overflights on that,” referring to the use of US P3C Orion planes. These are propeller-driven aircraft developed some 50 years ago for the United States Navy which it still uses for submarine and surface vessel detection and warfare.
THE complaint that the Aquinos are creating a political dynasty through the possible inclusion of Paolo Benigno “Bam” Aquino IV in the Liberal Party senatorial slate for the 2013 elections comes a bit too late. There is already an Aquino dynasty, or more properly, an Aquino-Cojuangco dynasty, and it didn’t come into being yesterday.
The beginnings of that dynasty go back to the Malolos Congress in 1898, in which the great grandfather of Benigno Aquino III, Servillano Aquino, was the representative of Samar. From 1907 to 1909, during the United States occupation, his maternal great grandfather Melecio Cojuangco represented the first district of Tarlac in the Philippine Legislature.