SONA Statement -- better late than later...

Let the real state of nation be heard, Go out and protest on July 28!
On July 28, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo will deliver her eighth State of the Nation Address amidst rising fuel prices, a rice crisis and persistent allegations of corruption. A week before her address, Arroyo has already gained the infamous distinction of being the most unpopular leader since the Marcos dictatorship was dismantled in 1986.

It is a well-deserved distinction.

Mrs. Arroyo is responsible for some of the worst economic policies that have wrought ruin on the people. Her insistence on imposing the Value Added Tax on oil smacks of gross insensitivity towards the plight of the people. Her so-called targeted subsidies are nothing more than dole-outs aimed at quelling unrest. So far Mrs. Arroyo has refused to take any responsibility for the mess her administration has created.

The administration battle cry "Ramdam ang Kaunlaran" has fallen flat on its face. The rallying call "Labanan and Kahirapan" has also been discredited as nothing more than political gimmickry.

This year's SONA by Mrs. Arroyo will not bring any hope for the people. As in previous SONAs, this year's speech will be marked by motherhood statements and a firm denial of the gravity of the crisis under her watch.

For the people however, we hold a completely different version of the SONA. The real state of the nation is that of grinding poverty and hunger, repression and widespread human rights violation, massive unemployment and sky-rocketing cost of living.

The real state of the nation is that of a sinking ship, whose captain robs then abandons all those on board.

We call on our fellow Filipinos who have had enough of Arroyo to come out and protest on July 28. Let not the lies of this regime go unchallenged. Let us hold accountable those who have conspired to plunder the nation's coffers and plunge the country into economic
ruin.

On July 28, join us in protest as we denounce the anti-people Arroyo regime throughout the country.

Signatories:

Vice President Teofisto Guingona Jr.
Dr. Bienvenido Lumbrera
Maita Gomez
Fr. Rex Reyes, NCCP
Fr. Joe Dizon, Solidarity Philippines
Fr. Rudy Abao
Sr. Mary John Mananzan, OSB
Prof. Fidel Nemenzo
Prof. Connie Paz
Adel Tamano, United Opposition
Antonio Tinio, ACT
Dr. Carol P. Araullo, BAYAN
RC Constantino
Atty. Feliciano Bautista
Sec. Josefina Lichauco, Concerned Citizens Movement
Sr. Maureen Catabian, RGS-WJPIC
Fr. Gerry Sabado, Promotion of Church People's Response
Alain Pascua, Kaakbay/BnA
Wilson Baldonaza, KMU
Danilo Ramos, KMP
Himpad Mangumalas, KAMP
Atty. Nasser Marohomsalic, Union of Muslims for Morality and Truth
Gat Inciong, Movement of Concerned Citizens for Civil Liberties
Ver Eustaquio, Kilusang EDSA Tres
Rez Cortez, FPJMTD
Dr. Giovanni Tapang, AGHAM
Netty B. Sillacos, NEFFAI
Natsy Verselles, Babala
Renato Reyes, Bayan
Connie Regalado, Migrante
Marie Hilao-Enriquez, Karapatan
Rep. Satur Ocampo, Bayan Muna
Rep. Rafael Mariano, Anakpawis
Rep. Liza Maza, Gabriela Women's Party
Emmi de Jesus, Gabriela
Ferdie Gaite - Courage/All Government Employees Unity
Roy Velez, Gloria Step Down Movement
Prof. Roland Tolentino, UP Aware
Prof. Danton Remoto, Ateneo de Manila University
Prof. Maria Lourdes Agustin, White Ribbon Movement
Nixon Kua, Be Not Afraid
Mark Louie Aquino, Youth Revolt
Iggy Rodriguez, Sining Bugkos
Mavi Deocampo, Concerned Artists of the Philippines
Prof. Bomen Guillermo, UP Contend
George San Mateo, Piston
Carmen Deunida, Kadamay
Clemente Bautista, Kalikasan-PNE
Karen Jamora, Health Science Students - Act Now!
Alvin Peters, Youth Act Now
Ken Ramos, AnakBayan
Vencer Crisostomo, LFS
Caloy Salvador, FQSM
Dayling Java, Moro-Christian People's Alliance

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