New Year

Duterte on New Year 2022: Be inspired by new beginnings

Bonz Magsambol
Duterte on New Year 2022: Be inspired by new beginnings

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte delivers his message after signing the 2022 General Appropriations Act and the bill creating the Department of Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos at the Malacau00f1an Palace on December 30, 2021. KING RODRIGUEZ/ PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

KING RODRIGUEZ/ PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

President Rodrigo Duterte says Filipinos are given 'fresh start and opportunity to aim higher and to do things better'

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte urged Filipinos on New Year’s Eve, Friday, December 31, to “cherish all that we have experienced in the previous year, including our struggles and victories in overcoming the COVID-19 pandemic and the ravages of Typhoon Odette.”

“As we take a whole-of-nation approach to recover and build back better, may we all be inspired by the promise of new beginnings that the New Year brings. Now, we are given a fresh start and opportunity to aim higher and to do things better – in the spirit of genuine malasakit at pagbabago (compassion and change),” Duterte said in his New Year message.

The President honored pandemic frontliners as the country continues its fight against COVID-19 that has so far infected over 2.8 million people in the Philippines and has killed over 50,000 individuals.

“The dedication and courage of our people – especially of our medical and essential frontliners, uniformed services, civilian personnel, and volunteers – demonstrate what great things we can achieve if we work in solidarity,” he said.

But 2021 took an unprecedented toll on health workers employed in a healthcare system which had problems spilling over from before the pandemic began. The release of their benefits mandated by law was also a rocky discussion as the Department of Health’s spending was put under scrutiny.

Overworked, underpaid health workers are walking away as Delta ravages PH

Overworked, underpaid health workers are walking away as Delta ravages PH

It was Duterte’s last new year message as President, as he is set to step down from office in June 2022. The presidential election that will elect Duterte’s successor is happening in May 2022.

Read the full text of his message below:

As we welcome the New Year 2022 with much hope, let us cherish all that we have experienced in the previous year, including our struggles and victories in overcoming the COVID-19 pandemic and the ravages of Typhoon Odette. Indeed, we have been through many challenging times but our distinct resilience and bayanihan spirit allowed us to prevail and come out stronger.

Every day, we continue to witness the indomitable spirit of the Filipino that adapts, endures and triumphs over all adversities. The dedication and courage of our people—especially of our medical and essential frontliners, uniformed services, civilian personnel and volunteers— demonstrate what great things we can achieve if we work in solidarity.

As we take a whole-of-nation approach to recover and build back better, may we all be inspired by the promise of new beginnings that the New Year brings. Now, we are given a fresh start and opportunity to aim higher and to do things better—in the spirit of genuine malasakit at pagbabago.

Let all our aspirations and actions be guided by our strong sense of nationhood and our deep faith in the Almighty. May we also find a stronger and higher purpose in our lives so that we may pursue only what is good for our families, communities and the entire nation.

Isang pinagpala at masaganang Bagong Taon sa inyong lahat!

– Rappler.com

Bonz Magsambol

Bonz Magsambol is a multimedia reporter for Rappler, covering health, education, and social welfare. He first joined Rappler as a social media producer in 2016.