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50-million Filipinos: Their moment of truth on Monday May 9, 2010

Sunday, May 9, 2010

50-million Filipinos: Their moment of truth on Monday

May 9, 2010, 5:41pm
 
Monday, 50-million Filipino voters are going to the polls to vote for a new president, vice president, hundreds of legislators, and thousands of local officials. Turnout is expected to be higher than the 77 percent at the last presidential elections in 2004.

Analysts have said that this year’s election is highly anticipated by Filipinos, following nine years of government under President Arroyo.

A total of nine candidates are vying to be the country's next president, but surveys show that three candidates dominate the race – Sen. Noynoy Aquino, Sen. Manny Villar, and former President Joseph Estrada. The administration bet, former defense secretary Gilbert Teodoro, is trailing behind at fourth place.... MORE  
SourceThe Manila Bulletin

URL: http://www.mb.com.ph/articles/256670/50million-filipinos-their-moment-truth-monday

17,888 posts up for grabs CBCP urges Filipinos to pray for peaceful, clean elections By LESLIE ANN G. AQUINO


17,888 posts up for grabs

CBCP urges Filipinos to pray for peaceful, clean elections
By LESLIE ANN G. AQUINO
May 9, 2010, 5:13pm
A total of 50.8-million voters are expected to troop to 76,340 polling precincts Monday to elect government leaders, including the successor of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, in the country’s first automated national and local elections.

Up for grabs are a total of 17,888 elective positions – one president, one vice president, 12 senators, 222 members of the House of Representatives, 80 governors, 80 governors, 762 provincial board members, 120 city mayors, 120 city vice mayors, 1,514 municipal mayors, 1,514 vice mayors, 1,346 city councilors, and 12,116 municipal councilors.

Also to be contested by 187 partylist groups are some 45 available seats in the Lower House.
The electorate, however, may need to go to their assigned voting precinct before 7 a.m. since some of the precincts will have 1,000 voters due to the clustering of precincts.... MORE  

SourceThe Manila Bulletin

URL: http://www.mb.com.ph/articles/256656/17888-posts-grabs

News in Pictures: Election Equipment Arrive in Maguindanao Town May 9, 2010

News in Pictures: Election Equipment Arrive in Maguindanao Town



Datu Piang, MAGUINDANAO — Workers unload election equipment at the Datu Piang town hall in Maguindanao. In some areas in the province, delivery of PCOS machines was a problem. Reports said this morning that Comelec people were prevented from delivering these machines to Buldon, a farflung town in Maguindanao. (Photo by Carlos H. Conde/Bulatlat.com)

 SourceBulatlat.com

URL: http://www.bulatlat.com/main/2010/05/09/news-in-pictures-election-equipment-arrive-in-maguindanao-town/

News in Pictures: International Observers Discover Glitches in Tests Conducted at Cavite PCOS Machines May 9, 2010

News in Pictures: International Observers Discover Glitches in Tests Conducted at Cavite PCOS Machines



CAVITE — Delegates of the People’s International Observers’ Mission (PIOM) participated in the mock elections in San Labrador Town in Dasmariñas, Cavite today, May 9, 2010. In Dasmariñas North National High School, one precint experienced glitches when votes for some local candidates were not counted by the PCOS machine. The problem was solved when the CF card was replaced. The teachers complain however that the cards were not properly labeled. They could not immediately identify which is the defective card and which one is the replacement. They also lamented that the time allotted to test the machine is not enough. The original schedule for testing the machines was set on May 3, 2010. (Photo curtesy of ST Exposure and PIOM/Bulatlat.com)


SourceBulatlat.com

URL: http://www.bulatlat.com/main/2010/05/09/carol-pagaduan-araullo-diabolical/

Diabolical Published on May 9, 2010 by Carol Pagaduan-Araullo

 Diabolical

Published on May 9, 2010


By CAROL PAGADUAN-ARAULLO
Streetwise/Business World
Posted by
Bulatlat.com

From the beginning, the question of whether automation will significantly reduce electoral fraud, or it will merely accelerate and open new opportunities for it, has been the subject of increasingly heated, albeit unresolved debate.

On one hand, many were willing to grant that elections automation would eliminate if not undercut fraud in the counting and canvassing of votes by its sheer efficiency and speed. It was claimed that the cheating mafia inside Comelec, candidates like Mrs. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo who make phone calls to Comelec officials to ensure their victory, and the warlords who undertake wholesale “dagdag-bawas” at gunpoint would be stymied by the advances in technology.

Modernity was finally catching up with an antiquated elections system prone to all sorts of crass as well as sophisticated shenanigans designed to thwart the will of the people. Or so it was argued.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.bulatlat.com/main/2010/05/09/carol-pagaduan-araullo-diabolical/

2010 Elections: Jobs, Agrarian Reform, Housing and Social Services Top Urban Poor Electoral Agenda Published on May 8, 2010

2010 Elections: Jobs, Agrarian Reform, Housing and Social Services Top Urban Poor Electoral Agenda
Published on May 8, 2010
By ANDREA ZARAH DAYAO and JENNY DE VENECIA
Bulatlat.com
 
MANILA — At the slightest rainfall, the relocation site where Rhiza Perlas, (age), lives is usually flooded. But on one fateful day on September 25, 2009, many homes in Montalban, Rizal were damaged and worse, swept by tropical storm Ondoy. The flood water rose so fast making it almost impossible to bring important things and documents to safety.

“During Ondoy, the water entered our house and reached the roof. Our house wasn’t destroyed but all our things were drenched and most of it were ruined,” Perlas said in Filipino.

Perlas was relocated to Montalban, Rizal after their home in San Andres Bukid, Manila was demolished due to a road-widening program of the government at the boundary of Makati and Manila in 2003. Perlas noticed that the slightest rainfall would make their relocation site flooded but an abnormal typhoon like Ondoy left them with no money, no furnitures and belongings and yet no help from the government.

“The first help that we received were from Anakpawis Party-list and Kadamay. Other NGOs also came to help us. But help coming from the government sector came only after a couple of days,” Perlas said, “We had a hard time cleaning our area. Some NGOs came to help but the government’s arrived very late.”

But after her gradual recovery from the damages that Ondoy had caused, Perlas and her neighbors still have to face the dire living conditions that they have to go through even before the storm Ondoy hit the country, foremost of which is the lack of job opportunities in the area.... MORE

SourceBulatlat.com

URL: http://www.bulatlat.com/main/2010/05/08/jobs-agrarian-reform-housing-and-social-services-top-urban-poor-electoral-agenda/

The Blood in Your Coffee (and Milk) Thickens: Nestlé Replaces Union on Strike, Continues to Flout SC Decision By MARYA SALAMAT

The Blood in Your Coffee (and Milk) Thickens: Nestlé Replaces Union on Strike, Continues to Flout SC Decision

Published on May 8, 2010
By MARYA SALAMAT
Bulatlat.com

Cabuyao, LAGUNA – The core factory in Asia of the world’s biggest food company Nestlé is a spotless white, sprawling structure along the national highway that runs through the town of Cabuyao in Laguna. This factory churns out milk, coffee and related products (from Nestogen to Milo, Chuckie, Bear Brand, Alpine, Nestlé Sorbetes to Chamyto to Coffeemate) for the Philippine market and nine other countries in Asia, Oceania and Africa.

Aboard a jeepney and shuttle buses that ferry workers to factories in Laguna’s industrial parks, one cannot miss the long white fence and low buildings of Nestlé. But despite its white paint, Nestlé has been notorious for the “blood in its coffee,” milk, cereals and other Nestlé products it is making and re-exporting from the Philippines.

Nestlé is one of the few global giants that rake in profits even during the bleakest times of the global downturn since 2008, due perhaps to its exploitative, bloody treatment of workers, especially in Third World countries.
In the Philippines, particularly in its core factory in Laguna, Nestlé has adopted a business-as-usual stance and decked out its factory like a military garrison from 2002 to 2007, crushed the eight-year workers’ strike, busted the union and laid-off hundreds of employees to make way for lower paid employees.

Nestlé only started shedding its outward look of being a military garrison when the International Labor Organization, acting on complaints of the striking United Filipro Employees-Drug, food, and Allied Industries Union-Kilusang Mayo Uno (UFE-DFA-KMU) and trade unions abroad, asked Nestlé to pullout the military in 2007. At about the same time, the regional special action force (RSAF), an elite police unit that was utilized in brutal assaults against the striking workers, was renamed to LIPPAG (Laguna Industrial Peace Police Action Group).... MORE  

SourceBulatlat.com

URL: http://www.bulatlat.com/main/2010/05/08/the-blood-in-your-coffee-and-milk-thickens-nestle-replaces-union-on-strike-continues-to-flout-sc-decision/

2010 Elections: Kontra Daya, Other Groups Protest Comelec Failure to Ensure Trouble-free Elections By ANNE MARXZE D. UMIL

2010 Elections: Kontra Daya, Other Groups Protest Comelec Failure to Ensure Trouble-free Elections

Published on May 7, 2010
By ANNE MARXZE D. UMIL
Bulatlat.com

MANILA – Kontra Daya, together with various people’s organization and progressive party-list groups as well as Makabayan senatoriable bets Rep. Satur Ocampo and Rep. Liza Maza held a protest action in front of the Comelec office today to protest against a “no-election and holdover scenario” and to hold Pres. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, the Comelec and Smartmatic accountable for the numerous problems plaguing preparations for the May 2010 elections.

They are calling on the people to be vigilant in the coming May 10 automated elections as the previous testing of the precinct count optical scan machines (PCOS) has been showing glitches. Fr. Joe Dizon, convener of Kontra Daya said this election is vulnerable to massive fraud due to its defective machines.

“We have expressed our doubts about this automated election, even IT experts express doubts on its reliability. But the Comelec did not listen to us, instead they left it all up to Smartmatic without a back up plan,” said Fr. Dizon during the protest.

He said these machines are bought using the people’s money and yet the automated election system, which is meant to be trouble-free, appears to be complicated and at risk to massive fraud. “It’s a miracle if we will have a clean, peaceful, successful and credible elections,” Fr. Dizon said. ... MORE

SourceBulatlat.com

URL: http://www.bulatlat.com/main/2010/05/07/2010-elections-kontra-daya-other-groups-protest-comelec-failure-to-ensure-trouble-free-elections/

Community Health Workers: Unsung Heroes of a Failed Health System Published on February 17, 2010

Community Health Workers: Unsung Heroes of a Failed Health System

Published on February 17, 2010
In a poor country where one out of two people dies without receiving any medical attention, where more than half of the population do not have access to basic health care, community-based health workers who provide needed services to fill this health-care gap should be heralded as heroes, not thrown to jail and tortured.

By ARNOLD PADILLA
Bulatlat.com

Related blog post: The AFP is telling us we need more NPA guerrillas

MANILA — In a poor country where one out of every two people dies without receiving any medical attention, 50 percent of the population do not have access to health care, 40 percent do not have access to essential medicine, 10 mothers die daily due to pregnancy and childbirth-related causes, and 100 municipalities are doctorless and nurseless 1 while more than 7,700 nurses, 83 doctors, and 196 professional midwives leave the country yearly 2 to work abroad, trainings to equip ordinary citizens attend to the basic health needs of poor and neglected communities should be welcomed.

And a government that is sensitive to the needs of its people should support such initiative, or at least be thankful to medical professionals and volunteers who give their skills, knowledge, time, and resources in order to help bridge the widening gap in the need and availability of health services in the country.


Dr. Alex Montes ministering the sick during a medical mission in Montalban, Rizal. (Photo courtesy of CHD)
So when 43 health workers — including two medical doctors, a registered nurse, a registered midwife, and 39 community health workers — while conducting a training-seminar, were arrested and later tortured by the police and military on claims that they were making bombs, you know at once that something is seriously wrong.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.bulatlat.com/main/2010/02/17/community-health-workers-unsung-heroes-of-a-failed-health-system/

How Hacienda Luisita Stock Scheme Led to Farmers’ Misery Published on November 16, 2009

How Hacienda Luisita Stock Scheme Led to Farmers’ Misery

Published on November 16, 2009


Through the stock distribution option such as the one in Hacienda Luisita, the essence of land reform has been distorted to benefit landowners, denying the farmers of actual land redistribution.

By Xandra Bisenio

Ibon Features
The massacre in Tarlac’s Hacienda Luisita five years ago—where seven farm workers were felled by government bullets and scores suffered injuries—is a tragic testament to the peasants’ continuing plight of landlessness and poverty.

Particularly in Luisita, peasants have for two decades been denied the essence of land reform—genuine land distribution. This, as the Cojuangcos persist in implementing the stock distribution option (SDO) despite justified calls for its revocation.

Just recently, Hacienda Luisita again figured in an alleged controversial deal. According to United Luisita Workers Union Chairperson Lito Bais, the national government purchased 83 hectares of Luisita for the construction of a portion of the Subic-Tarlac-Clark Expressway (SCTEX) for which farmworkers received anomalously varying amounts– from as high as P300 to only a few centavos each.... MORE  

Source:    Bulatlat.com

  URL: http://www.bulatlat.com/main/2009/11/16/how-hacienda-luisita-stock-scheme-led-to-farmers%E2%80%99-misery/

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