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Rm. N-411, House of Representatives, Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines
+63 2 931 5497, +63 2 931 5001 local 7370

The original arrangement this morning was that because “Minority Leader” Marcelino “Nonoy” Libanan was not yet ready to deliver his Counter SONA, I can proceed to deliver my Counter SONA this afternoon as I am already prepared to do so. But as the “Minority Leader” has decided to deliver his Counter SONA today, I was expecting that I would also be delivering my critique of President Marcos, Jr.’s State of the Nation Address after him. 

Since by tradition, the authentic opposition’s Counter SONA is delivered the day after the President delivers his SONA, I have decided to furnish the media and the Plenary Support Service of the House for the record, a copy of my Counter SONA.

(Message delivered by Rep. Edcel C. Lagman on 27 October 2021 during the Department of Agriculture and PhilRice’s Seed Distribution for the 2022 Dry Season)

The great Black American educator and author Booker T. Washington once said that “No race can prosper until it learns there is as much dignity in tilling a field as there is in writing a poem.” We should recognize and acknowledge that everyone plays an indispensable role in nation building – from farmers to Presidents – we all play a part and are all important.

I voted “yes” to House Bill No. 10261, which is identical to Senate Bill No. 2408, because I fully support the extension of the registration of voters beyond the COMELEC-fixed deadline of September 30, 2021. The extension is made more crucial and critical because the continuing registration of voters was stalled by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic even as R.A. No. 8189 on continuing registration of voters validly subsists.

The issues of population, poverty, reproductive health, and sustainable human development are so closely interconnected that none of them can be considered in isolation.

Almost 20 years ago in 2002, former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, in his message to the Fifth Asian and Pacific Population Conference in Bangkok maintained that “… the eradication of extreme poverty and hunger, cannot be achieved if population and reproductive health issues are not addressed.  In order to address these issues, we must work to further promote women’s rights and invest in education and health, including reproductive health and family planning.”