2016 State of the Nation Address (Philippines)

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First State of the Nation Address
of President Rodrigo Duterte
SONA 2016 1.png
President Rodrigo Duterte delivering his first State of the Nation Address at the Batasang Pambansa in Quezon City.
DateJuly 25, 2016 (2016-07-25)
Duration1 hour and 33 minutes
VenueSession Hall, Batasang Pambansa Complex
LocationQuezon City, Philippines
ParticipantsRodrigo Duterte

The 2016 State of the Nation Address was the first State of the Nation Address delivered by President Rodrigo Duterte.

Seating and guests[edit]

Three former Presidents, Fidel Ramos, Joseph Estrada, and Gloria Macapagal Arroyo attended the SONA. This was the first time that Arroyo attended Congress after being detained for four years at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center in Quezon City, after the Supreme Court voted 11-4, dismissing the plunder case filed against her in connection with the alleged misuse of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office's P366-million intelligence fund.

Among those who also attended were Vice President Leni Robredo, Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno, and Papal Nuncio and Head of the Diplomatic Corps, Giuseppe Pinto. Former President and Duterte's predecessor, Benigno Aquino III skipped the event.


Independent film director Brillante Mendoza has accepted the offer by PCO Secretary Martin Andanar to direct the first State of the Nation Address of President Duterte.[1] Andanar held a meeting, with Mendoza, director and TV host Jun Sabayton and PCO Assistant Secretary for Strategic Communications Ramon Cualoping III to discuss several details of the SONA.[2]

Mayor Herbert Bautista announced that there will be no classes in all levels in Quezon City on the day of the State of the Nation Address itself, particularly in schools near the Batasang Pambansa.[3]


President Duterte arrived at the Session Hall of the House of Representatives at 4:00pm (PST). After the President's arrival, Senate President Koko Pimentel and House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez convened the joint session of the both houses. The national anthem was sung by folk singer Bayang Barrios,[4] followed by an interfaith unity prayer led by representatives from the Catholic Church, Protestants, Muslims and the Iglesia ni Cristo.[5]

The original speech of the president was intended to last for about 38 minutes,[6] but due to additional ad libs of Duterte, the first State of the Nation Address ran for 1 hour and 33 minutes.[7]

After the joint session was adjourned, Militant groups who just finished a demonstration rally outside the Batasang Pambansa to show their support to the Duterte administration went on a meeting with President Duterte.[8]

Address content and delivery[edit]

President Duterte began his first SONA that he will not resort into fingerpointing against the past administration.[9]


  1. ^ "LOOK: Brillante Mendoza confirmed to direct Duterte's SONA". Rappler. July 15, 2016. Retrieved July 15, 2016.
  2. ^ "Brillante Mendoza meets with Andanar for Duterte's first SONA". Manila Bulletin. July 14, 2016. Retrieved July 15, 2016.
  3. ^ "Classes in Quezon City on SONA day suspended". GMA News. July 18, 2016. Retrieved July 18, 2016.
  4. ^ "WATCH: Bayang Barrios sings national anthem". ABS-CBN News. July 25, 2016. Retrieved July 25, 2016.
  5. ^ "Multifaith leaders pray for unity at Duterte SONA". ABS-CBN News. July 25, 2016. Retrieved July 25, 2016.
  6. ^ "It lasts at least 38 minutes, awakens 'patriot' in us, can make one cry: Andanar". InterAksyon. July 24, 2016. Retrieved July 24, 2016.
  7. ^ "FULL SPEECH: Duterte's 1st State of the Nation Address". Philippine Daily Inquirer. July 25, 2016. Retrieved July 25, 2016.
  8. ^ Macas, Trisha (July 25, 2016). "Duterte breaks bread with militants after delivering SONA". GMA News. Retrieved July 25, 2016.
  9. ^ "Duterte opens SONA: 'Finger-pointing is not the way'". GMA News. July 25, 2016. Retrieved July 26, 2016.

External links[edit]