Passing marks for President Noynoy Aquino’s first year


Photo by Jane Uymatiao

A year ago, Blog Watch participated in the coverage of President Aquino’s inaugural. Though I did not vote for him, I vowed to support his presidency by being one of an empowered citizen in his government. Optimism was high. Together with Jane, we accidentally participated in the first media conference in Malacanang Palace.


Photo by TJ Manotoc

In my June 30, 2010 blog entry which happened to be the First Social Media day, good news awaited us:

Good news awaited me when I was told that the new administration acknowledge the role of bloggers as citizen watchdogs. Secretary Lacierda admitted to being a blogger himself and assured that the Communications group which is still being finalized will include something for social media and give bloggers a chance to interact with the administration. If plans push through, the Aquino administration will be the first in the country to utilize blogging as a legitimate feedback mechanism for government.

Today, a year later, I look back at President Aquino’s administration and still ask where is the road map for change, Mr. President?. I ponder at the positive and negative side of his administration.

Positive

1. He supports the RH Bill, a first for any president in the Philippines.

2. He appointed competent people that I personally know and trust. (Down side is there are also incompetent ones).

3. He is honest, transparent and untainted with corruption. His sisters who act as the “first lady” are active in social work, and other community service.

Negative

1. What happened to the mechanism for social media users like us who participate in governance watch. Though Blog Watch gets to participate in major events, I have to request for it.

2. Though supportive of the RH Bill, he has not deemed it urgent in the priority bills.

3. Freedom of Information bill has yet to be a priority bill.

4. Though transparent, some of his officials do not follow suit especially when it came to filing of the SALNS.

5. He does not have regular cabinet meetings but I often see him moving around doing photo ops. He needs to sit down and plan policies and define the road map for the next five years.

6. He needs to be more decisive and assertive. If he appointed incompetent and corrupt friends in government, he needs to listen to the people . Give us updates on what he is doing about them.

The president probably knows all this already but I would like to reiterate the need for the road map, the short and long range plans. The citizenry will appreciate the President’s “telling us coherently how he intends to prosecute crooks in government, create gainful employment, raise incomes, produce affordable food, build low-cost dwellings and put decent clothes on our backs.”

If I were to rate the President’s first year with a grade range, it will be a passing mark of 77. He can do better in the next five years. Passing marks only because of his good traits that can be used to his advantage to become a more effective leader.

I can only hope that his performance improves.

I can only hope because this is my country. I love my country and there is no way but progress for us. With our continued participation in governance watch, we can make it happen.

Feedback from other bloggers in Blog Watch:

Sagging satisfaction a year after the street party by Carlos Maningat

Noynoy a year after: Deepening poverty, worsening crisis, Part 1 of 2 by Venzie Crisostomo

Noynoy a year after: from tuwid na daan to KKK, Part 2 of 2 by Venzie Crisostomo

The year under a yellow sun by Cocoy

Pnoy’s scores a year after..a 10 and a 4 by Dine Racoma

Feedback in Twitter and in the news show that most give him passing marks.

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BlogWatch began in November 2009 as a group of independent-minded bloggers and social media users helping with voter education. It has since evolved into a group of citizen advocates who engage government and the private sector, online and offline, for social good.

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BlogWatch receives the “Best Story” Award for the First Data Journalism PH 2015 from the Open Knowledge Foundation and Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism  for their story on “Aid Monitoring: Citizens’ Initial Efforts in the Wake of Typhoon Yolanda” . Forbes Philippines also received the same award.

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