Monday, 28 July 2014

PIA News Dispatch - Saturday, July 26, 2014

Palace asks the public to watch President Aquino's State of the Nation Address on Monday

The Palace invited the public to watch and take part as the President delivers his 5th State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday.

"We invite everyone to watch the SONA and take part in the national discussion on the state of our country, as we reflect on future endeavors and the gains we have collectively achieved these past four years," Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said in a statement over dzRB Radyo ng Bayan on Saturday.

Valte also said that as the Palace prepares for the State of the Nation Address, it also wants to invite the public to view its special Official Gazette page for the 2014 SONA at

"It contains links to the transcripts of all previous SONAs, as well as to our SONA history page, which features enlightening trivia on past presidents," she said.

The SONA will also be streamed live on the website on Monday, after which the Palace will upload the transcript and the corresponding technical reports, according to Valte.

The President is still doing his preparations for the SONA together with his speechwriters, the Presidential Management Staff, the Office of the Cabinet Secretary, and Office of the Executive Secretary, Valte added. PND (as)

Government to continue investing in people, says Palace official

Malacanang said the government will continue to prioritize uplifting the lives of the people following the release of UN Development Report that assesses income, education and life expectancy of the nation.

"When it comes to that, it’s really in continuing to invest in human capital," Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said in an interview on Saturday over dzRB Radyo ng Bayan.

Valte said that the general perception is that investment only means money going to infrastructure to attract businesses.

But she said there is also investments on human capital, which means strengthening the capabilities of the country's citizens, she said.

This includes investment in education, health care, social services and others, she added.

According to the recently released UN report, the Philippines improved slightly in its assessment. The UN Development Report measures income, education and life expectancy.

The report was released in Tokyo by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) covering 187 countries, with the Philippines ranking No. 117, up one notch from 118 in the previous edition.

The Top 10 countries in UNDP's ranking from No. 1 to 10, are Norway, Australia, Switzerland, the Netherlands, the United States, Germany, New Zealand, Canada, Singapore, and Denmark.

The UN Development Report pushed for wider access to basic social services like education, health care, water supply and sanitation, and public safety, full employment, disaster risk reduction and management, and responsive institutions. PND (as)

Palace renews commitment to fight poverty as country's population hits 100 million Sunday

The government will strive hard to bring the poorest of the poor out of poverty after population experts said the country's population will hit 100 million on Sunday.

"Ang importante is kahit palaki na tayo nang palaki, we must be able to tailor fit our programs to help the fifth quintile of the population to be able to get out of that demographic. Ito naman ang importante sa pamahalaan," Deputy Presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said in an interview over dzRB Radyo ng Bayan on Saturday.

Government interventions must be at the fifth quintile of the population or the poorest of the poor, the Palace official said.

Majority of government programs are aimed at helping this portion of the population, according to Valte. This include the conditional cash transfer program, and the universal healthcare.

This is to ensure that they will be 100 percent covered by PhilHealth especially indigent citizens, Valte added.

The Philippine population will reach 100 million at 12:06 a.m. or thereabouts on Sunday, according to population officials.

The figure of 100 million was based on population projections by the Philippine Statistics Authority, which says three babies are born in the Philippines every minute.

This event would bring hope as well as challenges to the country as it struggles to give its people a better quality of life, according to experts.

Pro-life advocates said reaching the 100-million figure is actually good news and a blessing for the country because it would mean more human resources to advance the economy.

Other countries with 100 million population or more include Mexico, 122.3 million; Japan, 127.1 million; Russian Federation,142.8 million; Bangladesh, 156.6 million; Nigeria, 173.6 million; and Pakistan,182.1 million. PND (as)