SONA may be held in Malacañang, Senate President says

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The President's fifth State of the Nation Address next month may take place in Malacañang instead of the Batasang Pambansa, Senate President Vicente "Tito" Sotto III said Thursday. (FILE PHOTO)

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 4) — The President's fifth State of the Nation Address next month may take place in Malacañang instead of the Batasang Pambansa, Senate President Vicente "Tito" Sotto III said Thursday.

Sotto said Senate and House representatives are currently in talks with the Office of the President and security on the new venue.

"There is a suggestion that the President will deliver his State of the Nation Address in Malacañang," he told the Senate during a session. "As we speak the Presidential Security Group and the Office of the President is already having talks with the Senate secretariat and the Senate Secretary and also Secretary General of the House."

Sotto added that senators and congressmen have the option choose where to stay to watch the SONA in July.

The yearly SONA is traditionally held at the Batasang Pambansa in Quezon City but lawmakers have earlier raised concerns on safety measures amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Metro Manila is currently under general community quarantine, with limited businesses operating, to contain the spread of the infectious disease.

More than 20,000 people in the country have caught COVID-19 and 984 of them have died. Meanwhile, 4,248 have survived.