Press Release
December 24, 2016

Christmas 2016 Message of Senate President Koko Pimentel

I wish everyone a Merry Christmas! And I pray that the coming new year will usher in a period of peace, justice, and prosperity for you, your family, our country and the rest of the world.

Christmas is a time for peace. Remember that our Lord always said "Peace be with you." Hence, let us be at peace this Christmas: at peace with our God, with our religion and conscience, with our family and community, with our countrymen, our ASEAN region, and with the entire community of nations.

In the spirit of Christmas, let us therefore support President Rodrigo Duterte's unilateral declaration of a ceasefire with rebel forces. At no time in four decades has our nation been closer to long-lasting peace than now. Let us pray that we achieve this in 2017.

Christmas is also a time for sharing, as a way of celebrating our blessings and thanking the Almighty for the blessings he has showered upon us.

Let us be thankful that during this Christmastime the 2017 National Budget was signed into law by the President. We have tried our very best to make this budget a Budget for Change. In this budget we are sharing the nation's blessings to all our countrymen in the form of free tuition in State Universities and Colleges, free irrigation for farmers, and free health insurance coverage for all, and well distributed strategic infrastructure works, among others. On a personal note, I would like to thank all those who supported me as Senate President and as President of the PDP LABAN, and all those who continue to support PDP and our beloved President Rodrigo Roa Duterte. Thank you for giving us the chance to lead our nation.

We have a lot planned for next year. We need to prepare our bodies, hearts, and minds for the hard and challenging work ahead. So let us all take this time to recharge our batteries with courage, fortitude, and steadfastness.

Once again, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all!

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