MANILA -- A research group on Tuesday challenged President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III to present clear-cut solutions to the worsening poverty and joblessness in the country.

In an interview with Sun.Star, Sonny Africa, research head of Ibon Foundation, said that the government lack clarity in addressing these problems.

“The most striking thing is that President Aquino has yet to forward any ideas, much less new ones, to deal with the country’s serious jobs, livelihood and incomes crisis. Indeed, if anything, the public faces looming water, power and rail transit rate hikes. The novelty of the Aquino presidency is still there but real improvements in the economy are urgently needed,” he said.

A new Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey released on Monday said 43 percent of Filipinos wanted “livelihood programs,” while 33 percent batted for “jobs,” from the Aquino government.

Government data shows that the number of poor Filipinos ballooned to 27.6 million in 2006 from 25.5 million in 2001 while number of unemployed Filipinos stood at 3.1 million last April. (Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)