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Duterte SONA deserves a failing grade, says ex-solon

Former Bayan Muna Partylist representative Teddy Casiño on Monday gave a failing grade for President Rodrigo Duterte's second State of the Nation Address (SONA) because of he failed to discuss substantial issues concerning the masses.

"Actually yung SONA e katulad last year, medyo masyado madaming kwento and yung mga substantial issues na gusto namin marinig di namin narinig," Casiño told reporters.

He added that militant groups expected Duterte to discuss issues such as contractualization, residents displaced by the Marawi City crisis, and the martial law declaration in Mindanao.

Instead, Casiño said they heard a "disappointing SONA."

"Pinanindigan niya talaga na tuloy-tuloy yung martial law, yung (Oplan) Tokhang. It was a very disappointing SONA," he said.

In his two-hour SONA, Duterte, among other topics, vowed to continue the war on drugs and the implementation of martial law in Mindanao.

He also spoke against consultants of the National Democratic Front, the political arm of the Communist Party of the Philippines.

Casiño, however, remains hopeful that Duterte will eventually declare the continuation of the peace talks.

"Reading between the lines, parang may konting bukas pa siya na puwedeng pagusapan. May sinasabi siyang tampuhan lang yan ganyan talaga," he said.

"Nasa kanya ang bola, tutal sya naman tumigil nung fifth round (of peace talks), siya ang nagpahinto ng backchannel talks. So siya din ang puwedeng mag-resume," Casiño added.

4 out of 10

Mark Lim, national spokesperson of the National Union of Students of the Philippines, gave Duterte's SONA a grade of four out of 10.

Lim said Duterte deserves the score since he has yet to implement tuition-free education for the youth.

"Ang grado ko sa pangulo ay kuwatro dahil maraming pangakong napako katulad ng pagbibigay ng libreng edukasyon sa kabataan. Bagamat merong free tuition policy, patuloy pa rin ang paniningil ng tuition saka other school fees, patuloy ang pagtaas ng matrikula," Lim said. — BAP, GMA News