Philippine President Benigno Aquino III delivered his fifth State of the Nation Address, an annual report of his administration’s achievements and goals.
The president touted the Philippines’ stellar economic growth, citing upgrades from major credit ratings agencies, and saying the country was no longer the sick man of Asia. He also took the opportunity to defend once again, billions of dollars of discretionary funds known as the Disbursement Acceleration Program or DAP.
However, it is precisely because of these funds that the president is in hot water now. Provisions of the DAP had been declared illegal by the Supreme Court, a huge blow for a man who’s made it his mission to fight corruption.
President Benigno Aquino III is the most popular leader this country has had in years, but that popularity is waning. Protests like this are gaining ground and there are growing calls for him to step down.
In fact, Aquino is facing multiple impeachment complaints, but analysts believe the president is likely to survive the crisis.
For many of these protesters, what matters even more is that the country’s so-called economic miracle hasn’t touched their lives.
CCTV-America’s Barnaby Lo reports from Manila.