Three Filipino community leaders based in Doha, who were nominated by the Reformed OFW Initiative (ROI), have attended the recently-held state of the nation address (Sona) of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte.
Joseph Timothy Rivera, who represented the Association of Filipino Realtors & Entrepreneur Executives in Qatar (Afreeq), as well as Mildred Ngoaban of the Guardians League Qatar (GLQ) and Mary Jill Lluz of AKO-OFW Qatar Chapter, attended the virtual event organised by the United Filipino Global (UFG).
They were joined by 53 other OFW leaders from other parts of the world. Their live screens were flashed on the screen four times during Duterte’s speech as part of the official audience, according to Rivera.
Lluz underscored that though the Sona was streamed live worldwide by Radio Television Malacañang (RTVM) through most media channels and social media platforms, “being part of the officially invited virtual audience with interactive capabilities during the president’s sixth and final state of the nation address has been an honour and a true experience.”
Ngoaban added: “Watching the president speak while standing for more than two hours is the message of the Sona itself. Together, let us rise with him and the entire Filipinos as a nation.”
“As per protocols laid out by Malacanang, all attendees were required to wear Filipiniana (traditional Filipino attire) and use an official Philippine flag-inspired background. This is now the second Sona wherein a significantly large audience from the OFW sector was invited,” Rivera explained.