President Duterte’s last budget request should “capture the urgency and the dimensions” of the national recovery from the pandemic that he laid out during his final State of the Nation Address Monday, Sen. Sonny Angara said today.
“The budget puts the money where the rhetoric is,” Angara said.
He said the plans Duterte spelled out during his speech should end up in the proposed 2022 national budget, which Malacañang will be sending to Congress soon.
“If dreams don’t get funded, they’ll remain as such. Historically, the post-SONA challenge is how to translate the language of the SONA into budget language,” Angara said.
Angara describes the 2022 budget as “the major downpayment we will be making for our hard and long road to recovery.”
But the good thing is that the foundations for that recovery have been laid out “through laws and programs that promote economic growth with social equity,” Angara said.
“Meron ng free college to train our youth. Nandyan din ang Universal Health Care. On the economic front, we are retooling the way we do business, encourage start-ups, retain talent and attract investments in order to create good paying jobs for our people.”
Angara said reform laws advocated by President Duterte and his predecessors “are the scaffoldings that hold our nation together in times of crisis and the same ones we will use in climbing out of the pandemic we are in.”
But he said things should be done as fast as possible “because the window to make the turnaround won’t stay open for long.”
“I think everything we do from hereon – vaccinating our people, spending the budget, safely reopening our schools, building infrastructure – should be done at warp speed,” he said.
“There are 338 days to June 30. Yan ang araw na matatapos ang termino ng Pangulong Duterte. Kailangan mabilis ang implementasyon ng mga programa, hindi dahil ‘endo’ na sya, pero kailangan ng taumbayan na lugmok sa pandemya. Yan naman ang mensahe nya sa SONA,” he said.
“There are two ways of viewing a clock. You can count the time remaining and just coast along. Or work furiously and like those who travel to space, see it as a countdown to liftoff,” Angara said.