Duterte’s first SONA less than an hour – Palace

Patty Pasion
Communications Secretary Martin Andanar also says the speech was written by the President himself

SHORT AND SWEET. President Rodrigo Duterte's first State of the Nation Address (SONA) will only take up to 38 minutes, says Communications Secretary Martin Andanar.

MANILA, Philippines – Communications Secretary Martin Andanar said that President Rodrigo Duterte’s first State of the Nation Address (SONA) speech will only last a little over 30 minutes.

“The speech would probably last, I suppose I guess intelligently, it was 38 minutes,  based on our application – we used [an] online [application] to calculate our actual [time]. But [more or less] 38 minutes. If you would include the applause and some ad libs by the President, it could take longer,” he said in a press conference on Sunday, July 24, in Davao City.

Andanar also said that the speech was written by Duterte himself and was revised more than 10 times. (READ: Duterte’s 1st SONA: What we know about the awaited speech

“The address of the President, personally written by the President, will be a very powerful speech that will awaken the patriot in every Filipino,” he said.

On Monday, July 25, Duterte will face the public for his first SONA where he will lay down the government’s agenda before Congress. He is also expected to announce his legislative priorities, especially on his primary campaign promises: curbing crime and corruption, and federalism.

Duterte is expected to arrive at the House of Representatives at 4 pm Monday to meet with the newly-elected Senate President and the House Speaker briefly before he delivers his speech at 4:30 pm.

House ready for SONA

House Secretary-General Marilyn Barua-Yap said they are all set for Monday’s big event since the President’s team wants to keep things simple.

“The preparations were not really very difficult in terms of the requirements. Like for example, the President’s team wanted simple arrangements for the session hall, the lobbies, the reception areas, and the cocktails,” she said.

Guests will be welcomed to the plenary hall starting 2 pm and doors will close at 3:30 pm. (READ: Duterte’s 1st SONA: Program flow for July 25

“Please come early because once the doors are closed, you won’t be able to enter the session hall anymore, you will be escorted to some parts of the building and you’ll have to wait until the SONA is over before you can get out of your place,” Yap advised invited guests.

Lawmakers, Cabinet secretaries, and former presidents are expected to grace Duterte’s first SONA. – Rappler.com

Patty Pasion

Patty leads the Rappler+ membership program. She used to be a Rappler multimedia reporter who covered politics, labor, and development issues of vulnerable sectors.