President Benigno S. Aquino III receives a copy of a framed ISO 9001:2008 Registration Certificate of DOLE’s Quality Management System from Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz during the 15th National Public Employment Service Office (PESO) Congress at the Reception Hall of the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City on Monday (October 26). With the theme: “Pagdaloy ng Disenteng Trabaho at Maunlad na Negosyo, Kaagapay ang PESO," the PESO Congress seeks to develop an environment conducive to strengthening the PESO’s capacity to provide valuable contributions toward productive employment facilitation; creation of learning opportunities for drawing new insights for better employment services at the grassroots, and promotion of stronger camaraderie and cooperation among the PESOs. (MNS photo)

President Benigno S. Aquino III receives a copy of a framed ISO 9001:2008 Registration Certificate of DOLE’s Quality Management System from Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz during the 15th National Public Employment Service Office (PESO) Congress at the Reception Hall of the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City on Monday (October 26). With the theme: “Pagdaloy ng Disenteng Trabaho at Maunlad na Negosyo, Kaagapay ang PESO,” the PESO Congress seeks to develop an environment conducive to strengthening the PESO’s capacity to provide valuable contributions toward productive employment facilitation; creation of learning opportunities for drawing new insights for better employment services at the grassroots, and promotion of stronger camaraderie and cooperation among the PESOs. (MNS photo)

MANILA  (Mabuhay) – President Benigno Aquino III on Thursday said Filipinos will be faced with the question come 2016 that will determine the future of the country for the next six years:

“Do we continue along the straight path that has seen us achieve so much together or do we allow our country to return to the dismal past?”

Aquino, who has only eight months left in office, made the statement during a convention of retailers in the Asia Pacific Region, the theme of which was “Asia Fast Forward.”

“The question of how we must make most of the future is best answered by the theme of your conference, we have to fast forward. This is not only apt for your drive to realize the potential of the Asia Pacific market, it is also apt for us Filipinos,” Aquino said.

“Whether for your sector or my countrymen, it is clear now that we have so many successes under our belt, now that we are realizing our aspirations, we cannot allow ourselves to backslide,” he added.

Aquino has endorsed former Interior Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas II as his anointed successor in 2016. The administration candidate is running against Vice President Jejomar Binay, and Senators Grace Poe and Miriam Defensor-Santiago.

Aquino said the Filipino vote in the 2016 national elections will determine the course of the next six years, the term of office for the chief executive as mandated by the 1987 Constitution.

“I am confident that our people have a clear answer in mind. They know that the depth of skill and talent in our country has yet to be fully realized, and that we need to not just continue, but double down on reform to give rise to a Philippines that is a shining example of sustainable and inclusive growth,” he said.(MNS)