House Majority Leader and Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez expects President Rodrigo Duterte in his final State of the Nation Address (SONA) to present his achievements in the last five years of his administration and focus on continued recovery plans, delivery of basic services and government's healthcare programs to battle the COVID-19 pandemic.
“There were so many great achievements of President Duterte and I expect him to present these during his final SONA. I expect the President also to focus on the continued recovery plans and healthcare programs to fight the pandemic,” Romualdez, president of the Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats, said in a radio interview.
“Like his previous SONA, the speech
of the President will be full of optimism and hope. I believe he will discuss the significant achievements of his administration in the fight against criminality, illegal drugs, COVID-19, improvement on the delivery of the government’s assistance to the vulnerable sectors, among others,” Romualdez, chairman of the House committee on rules, said.
On top of the proposed 2022 national budget, Romualdez said the leadership of Speaker Lord Allan Velasco was poised to pass possible additional priority measures in the remaining one year of Duterte's term.
“We are going to wait for President Duterte's announcement for his plans in the remaining one year of his term,” Romualdez, also president of the Philippine Constitution Association (Philconsa), said.
Romualdez also said that preparations at the Batasan Complex for the final SONA of President Duterte before a joint session of Congress had been in full swing.
“We are all excited for that and we are still waiting for updates on final details from Malacañang. On our part, maybe like before, health and safety protocols are still strict for our physical attendees, such as the requirement for an RT-PCR swab test, to ensure the safety of the people who will be there in the House of Representatives, including President Duterte,” Romualdez said.
“Wearing face masks and face shields are still required. Social distancing, one-way travel direction and submission of health declarations will also be implemented,” he said.