Duterte SONA 2020 date, what to expect

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte is set to deliver his fifth State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday, July 27, 2020 amid the prevailing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

Duterte SONA 2020 date, what to expect
President Rodrigo Roa Duterte delivers his State of the Nation Address at the House of Representatives in Quezon City. Photo Credit: PCOO

Malacañang Palace will adapt "blended" style SONA, which is a combination of having physical guests at the Session Hall of the House of Representatives at the Batasang Pambansa Complex, Quezon City while others are watching from online or through television sets.

READ: "Piling-piling mahahalaga": SONA 2020 outlines economic recovery plans

“That’s being discussed. I think kung meron tayong blended learning, we will also have a blended SONA,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque earlier said.

UPDATE: Only 25 solons will personally witness the SONA event.

The group of lawmakers allegedly invited to the plenary hall were behind the denial by the House Committee on Legislative Franchises of the franchise application of ABS-CBN.

Movie director Joyce Bernal will direct the whole event, her third under the Duterte administration.

There will be no live singing of the national anthem but only a recorded media playback of chosen children from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.

There will be no entourage to welcome the President as he enters the Batasan premise.

Meanwhile, Palace promised that SONA will be aired without edits as only the state-run Radio Television Malacañang (RTVM) will be allowed to cover the SONA inside the Batasan.

READDuterte SONA 2020 to air live and unedited – RTVM exec

Previously, Senate President Vicente Sotto III discussed the suggestion for Duterte to deliver his second to the last SONA at Malacañan Palace.

Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri also said the President may either deliver his SONA through a televised speech in Malacañang or hold the event at the Batasan Pambansa with guests limited to lawmakers.

"I do not see the possibility of business as usual sa SONA. Impossible," Zubiri said.

Under the Constitution, the Chief Executive is mandated to report the state of the country, unveil the government’s agenda for the coming year, and may also propose to Congress certain legislative measures.

“[T]he President shall address the Congress at the opening of its regular session,” Article VII, Section 23 of the 1987 Constitution said.

— The Summit Express

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