Former Vice President and United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) President Jejomar Binay on Tuesday called on the Filipino people to weigh very carefully their choice of a president in the forthcoming 2022 national elections.
“We are in the midst of a crisis like no other in the history of three generations of Filipinos born after the Second World War,” Binay said.
Binay cited the ballooning national debt, which has reached close to P13 trillion, almost double what all previous administrations combined had borrowed in the past.
For his party, UNA Secretary-General Atty. Jesus “Clint” Aranas added that the lockdown and closure of many medium and small businesses resulted in decreasing government revenues.
Aranas, who is a tax expert and former Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) president and general manager, underscored the need for a leader with “genuine compassion, courage and moral fortitude, who will not be beholden to vested interests, and will be concerned with the greater good of the poor who constitute the majority of our people”.
“Capability, not mere popularity; doers not charlatans who will surround himself with the best and brightest of the race and not bootlickers, and lead the country and the people in navigating across the perilous seas of social and economic hazards never before seen or felt since the wartime occupation of our country — this is the leader we must have,” Aranas said.
“We must therefore choose a president in 2022, who will need to file his certificate of candidacy by October this year, a scant nine months from now, who has the competence, adequate experience, and vision to undertake difficult decisions and doable solutions to stave off mass hunger and despair,” he added.
Aranas noted that based on national government data, the unemployment rate in 2020 reached 17.7 percent of the workforce or at least 7.3 million jobless Filipinos.
“This is further exacerbated by more than 300,000 OFW’s being laid off, and still counting,” Aranas noted.
He added that the continued effect of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic requires leadership that will save the nation and prevent chaos and unrest.
“Hungry people know no law,” Aranas added.