Press Release
July 23, 2013

Frank, straightforward and unpretentious

There was no need to window dress the true state of the nation.

Sen. Nancy S. Binay expressed satisfaction over the Aquino administration's efforts in narrowing the development gap essential to achieving an inclusive economic growth that would create more jobs, increase exports and open more investment opportunities.

According to Binay, the State of the Nation Address (SONA) would have been nice if the President acknowledged the hardships OFWs go through, or even mentioned the reintegration programs of the government.

Nonetheless, Binay said that she personally believes that President Aquino is sincere in cutting down poverty, strengthening economic fundamentals and seeking out new ways to sustain the gains of the Aquino administration.

"The SONA reasonably portrays the fruits of the President's administration in the past three years. I believe that the President is sincere in creating an environment that would bring inclusive growth even to the poorest regions despite the many challenges it is facing," Binay said.

The lady senator added that President Aquino has indicated the priority measures during the SONA which is part of his national development plan.

"We already heard what the President needs from Congress. We in the constructive minority are taking the cue in what we believe are necessary in helping the Aquino administration's plans in moving the economy forward," she noted.

She said that she will support the peace initiatives in Mindanao, continued fight against graft and corruption, increase housing support and other mass-housing programs, help in reviewing existing laws to help increase the benefits of soldiers and policemen, help in addressing the power shortage in Mindanao, and introduce needed reforms in the pension scheme of the Social Security System (SSS).

"The Senate's legislative agenda will be building on the momentum of the President's priority programs in the next three years. We will work to complement and reinforce the gains the Aquino administration has materially achieved in the last three years," Binay said.

The lady senator gave President Aquino a high mark on the expansion of healthcare coverage through Philhealth and allocating substantial budget to the health sector; the peace initiatives to end the war in Mindanao which has a direct impact on children, women and the elderly caught in the crossfires; efforts to curb graft and corruption at the Department of Education; rice self-sufficiency by 2014; and providing decent shelters to more than 7 million housing beneficiaries since 2010.

Binay would have wanted also the President to provide his programs for OFWs, policies that would address incessant price increases in oil and other basic commodities, but the lady senator fully understands that these may likely be included in Aquino's programs under the proposed 2014 budget.

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