A year ago today, you took your Oath of Office as 16th President of our Country. And what a ride it’s been.
You have done in a year what no other Philippine President has done in all those years they sat in office because they were part of the ruling elite and didn’t give a half a rat’s ass if we all starved to death.
You’ve managed to topple rotten institutions that have been the undoing of this country and you’ve smashed the rotten status quo that kept millions of Filipinos hungry, desperate, afraid. You’ve stopped the dizzying spin of a country that was on a downward spiral and you’ve done it while we all stood with mouths open.
And I need to thank you.
Thank you for having my back the countless times I’ve needed it– the very same way you’ve had the backs of those who have, for all time, been forgotten, dismissed, invisible, voiceless. OFWs, our indigenous peoples, the homeless in our midst who equalized a terribly inequitable position and grabbed uninhabitable homes. You said to them, “Take it. And I am sorry it has come to this. Let me fix this.”
You’ve made us remember what it was we had forgotten a long time ago because we’d been governed by the worst of us. Not only thieves but plunderers. And a lot of them in high office.
You’ve made us remember that government owes us—shelter, free education, health care, etc.
Before you, it was “Buhay pa naman kayo diba?”
And when you sat in office, it became, “I am sorry for the terrible oversight. I will fix this. I only ask that you be patient.”
And, bam, you got it done with hardly any fanfare. No applause needed. Free hospitalization, free medicines for the poor, free college in state universitites and colleges, free med school in SUCs.
Just like that, you unchained us from US imperialism. I never thought I would live to see this day, Mr. President, when we would be free of America’s constant meddling in our affairs.
You’ve us made us stand shoulder to shoulder with some of the world’s most powerful countries. And you’ve widened our scope by reaching out and forging stronger ties with our ASEAN brothers and sisters. You’ve made us a force to contend with in our region where before we were the whimpering sick man of Asia.
You’ve taken on a scourge that no president has ever had the guts and political will to take on—with some of them, I suspect, being in cahoots with these international drug cartels to screw our lives and the lives of our children. The very destiny of this country! Such traitors!
You have asked so much of us and none of us who support and love you mind because you yourself give so mightily of yourself.
You’ve given millions of Filipinos the strength and resolve we all need to fight for our country –and in ways we’ve never had to because we see your strength and resolve.
You have asked us to go where we’ve never gone before where service to our country is concerned and we follow you—gladly even—because we know you are a hundred steps ahead of us going wherever you need to go and doing what needs to get done for us.
You will not ask of us what you yourself will not give.
That’s the kind of President you are.
Thank you for asking me to serve our country in the way that you’ve asked me to. No longer on my own but with the full backing of a President I know is hellbent on setting right so many of what has gone terribly wrong with our country.
My heart lies broken at so much heartache that I now see up close and personal and on a much wider scope than I had thought existed. You’ve put me on the forefront of the battle lines.
And yet, I would not have it any other way. To embrace the lonely, the frightened and then to feed and clothe them…to be there by their side and to give them some measure of comfort and relief. To weep with them and yet too, to stand strong so they can lean on you. To find real remedies so their nightmares end.
Thank you, sir. What a privilege to serve where I am needed most. And what a privilege to serve under such a President.
I can find no greater honor in my life than this. Thank you.
You have, far and wide, exceeded expectations so we’re all on our feet giving you a resounding standing ovation.
Bravo, bravo Mr President!