Speech of President Aquino at the Basilica Parish Church of Mission Dolores, San Francisco


SPEECH
of
His Excellency BENIGNO S. AQUINO III
President of the Philippines
In front of the Filipino Community of the United States after Sunday Mass at the Basilica Parish Church of Mission Dolores
[September 26, 2010, San Francisco]

President Aquino’s statement before the 65th General Assembly of the United Nations


Statement
of
His Excellency Benigno S. Aquino III
President of the Philippines
Before the 65th General Assembly of the United Nations
[September 24, 2010, United Nations, New York City]

President Aquino’s Speech at the MCC Compact Signing Ceremony, September 23, 2010, New York City


Remarks
of
His Excellency BENIGNO S. AQUINO III
President of the Philippines
At the Millennium Challenge Corporation Compact Signing Ceremony
[September 23, 2010, The Hilton Room, The Waldorf Astoria, New York City]
[Please check against delivery]
“A Compact for Innovation”

Speech of President Aquino at the Council on Foreign Relations, New York City


Remarks
of
His Excellency  Benigno S. Aquino III
President of the Philippines
At the Council on Foreign Relations
[September 23, 2010, CFR Auditorium, 58 East 68th St., New York City]
[Please check against delivery]
“The Philippines: A New Agenda for Change”

Speech of President Aquino at the Citibank Economic Conference, New York City


SPEECH
OF
His Excellency BENIGNO S. AQUINO III
At The Citibank Economic Conference
[September 22, 2010, New York City]

Speech of President Aquino at Baruch College, New York City, September 23, 2010


Transcript of Extemporaneous Remarks
of
His Excellency Benigno S. Aquino III
President of the Philippines
During His Meeting with the Filipino Community
[September 23, 2010, Mason Hall, Baruch College, New York City]

Speech of President Aquino at Mount Saint Vincent College, New York City


SPEECH
of
His Excellency BENIGNO S. AQUINO III
President of the Philippines
Upon his acceptance of the the Elizabeth Seton Medal
[September 22, 2010, Mount Saint Vincent College, New York City]
“Enduring Faith and Continuing Solidarity”
A generation has passed since my mother accepted this award. At the time you conferred this award on her, it was still uncertain for many if my father’s death would be meaningful, or in vain.
Our country was still plunged in Orwellian darkness. It was still a place where the propagandists of the dictatorship thundered and shrilled that War is Peace, and that Freedom is Slavery.
They were wrong, of course, as the apologists of tyranny have always been wrong. What tyranny does is to try to postpone the inevitable, to terrorize and by so doing, to crush all hope of humanity recovering its lost liberties.
They thought they could crush my father’s spirit by throwing him in jail, hauling him before a kangaroo court, and finally, by brutally assassinating him. Instead, his death ransomed our democracy by freeing an entire people from paralyzing fear.
For her, it was so very meaningful that as an alumnus of this school, as the widow of Ninoy Aquino, and as a Filipina, her alma mater publicly stood by her and our country on that day in May, 1984. She accepted an award from you, not on her own behalf, or my father’s, but in the name of an entire people.
When she accepted this award, my mother said what sustained my father, and her, was courage founded on Faith.
She talked to you then, not about the courage that raises a fist in fury, but rather, the kind of blazing and serene hope that will not bow, that will not compromise, that cannot surrender.
In 1984, our people turned the tools of the dictatorship –its sham elections- against it, by actively competing in the national assembly elections of that year. By so doing, we began to restore democracy by the ways of democracy, as she so eloquently put it.
The world knows what happened in February, 1986, when the Filipino people peacefully toppled a dictatorship. In a Churchillian sense, the end of the dictatorship was only the beginning of my mother’s calvary for God and country.
My mother was called to serve her country by nurturing that newly restored democracy. No one was happier or more relieved to relinquish the responsibilities of office, when her term ended.
But there was no relinquishing her duty to country. Time and again, just as she faced down coup attempts during her presidency, she stood up and faced those who would turn back the clock and turn their backs on democracy.
As it was in 1984, so it became in the last years of my mother’s life: at times, a lonely, uphill struggle against great odds.
As it was during the period of dictatorship, so it became in my mother’s final years. Those who’d been friends turned their backs on her, those who’d braved the barricades now focused, instead, on preserving privilege, power, and wealth –assuming, as the dictator had done, that our people were too tired, too cynical, and too frightened, to care about not only self-government, but good government.
When my father was killed, it was said that bravery was simply standing in line to pay respects at his wake. When my mother passed away, what she herself called the defining characteristic of our people -“a faith that begets courage blazing with hope”- illuminated our country from end to end.
Those who had been dripping with contempt for the Filipino people were shocked to find the Filipino cared: about my mother, about her faith in our people, about her faith in God: the twin pillars that had sustained both she and her husband.
Now I, in turn, have been called to work with my people to ensure that democracy benefits all Filipinos, and not just a few.
The clamor for reform came from my people, and my being here to accept this award from you, is made possible by them. It is only proper that I accept this honor in their name.
In accepting this award, I am humbled by what this medal represents: your solidarity with my people. You stood with us in dark days. You stand with us now, in brighter days: the greatest period of optimism my people have seen, since the fall of Ferdinand Marcos.
My mother closed her speech of thanks in 1984, with a prayer. She prayed that the faith that sustained my father and her, would sustain our people until the day of their redemption.
I stand here as living testimony to People Power: the redemptive power of that prayer. It toppled the dictatorship, it frustrated those who would try to revive its ways, it sustained democracy and now, it serves as the bones and sinews of our great mandate for reform.
Filipinos saved themselves from slavery to a dictator; they saved themselves from returning to the status of slaves; and they are working mightily, today, to free themselves from slavery and from poverty.
A generation from now, perhaps another Filipino will stand here, and say to you: I am glad to say, that we remain not only free, but are now prosperous. We not only have the blessings of democracy, but are free of poverty. This is my prayer.
Thank you.


Regional Economic Manager’s Briefing


SPEECH
of
His Excellency BENIGNO S. AQUINO III
President of the Philippines
During the Regional Economic Manager’s Briefing
[September 16, 2010, Marco Polo Hotel, Davao City]


Maayong hapon kaninyong tanan.
It is an honor to be here in the presence of the business leaders of Davao. Your attendance is an indication of your interest in our efforts to improve business and economic conditions in the country. It is not just you who are bullish. Even foreign investors have expressed a renewed interest in doing business in our country.
Secretary of Trade Greg Domingo and Secretary of Finance Cesar Purisima have just come from a visit to the United States and they report that many businessmen abroad who previously avoided our country are now ready to take a second look. Businesses are already putting their money where their mouth is.
Last Monday, the Philippine Stock Market index hit an all-time high on heavy volumes. Our recent sale of 44.109 billion pesos worth of 10-year Philippine Peso Global Bonds was thirteen times oversubscribed by foreign investors. Even though the bonds were denominated in pesos, and not in dollars as they usually are, this means that they, and not we, will assume the foreign exchange risk. This is undeniably a sign of confidence.
We are also now exploring a number of proposals for big-ticket investments in roads and expressways, power plants and other vital infrastructure. If these projects push through, our government will save billions of pesos. We are working to further enhance the business climate so that they and you will be confident investing your money in our country. We are in the process of streamlining procedures for business registration and approval of big-ticket infrastructure projects to make them faster, simpler and easier.
I believe that you here in Davao are well poised to take advantage of this business climate. The hydroelectric plant in Santa Cruz has just been inaugurated and this will help provide much needed energy to Mindanao. With the greatly improved power situation one more hindrance to your success is being removed.
And still there’s more. My administration is seriously considering liberalizing air transport to make it easier for people to come to Davao and other parts of the country and for exporters to reach their markets more efficiently.
As our administration strives to further enhance business conditions here in Davao, I know that you will continue to thrive. As your businesses grow, they will employ more people and pay more taxes. You can count on us to do our part. Davao, like Mindanao, is poised to be the Land of Promise fulfilled.
Now that the people themselves have directed us towards the straight and righteous path, it is incumbent upon each and every Filipino—from the private or public sphere, from the most common folk to the grandest collectives—to unite under the banner of hope. Thank you for being part of our agenda of change.
Your government is here for you, and we continue to draw our strength from you. Maayong adlaw ug daghang salamat  sa inyong tanan.