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Boss ko kayo indeed EDITORIAL 07/05/2010

Monday, July 5, 2010

Boss ko kayo indeed

Click to enlarge
The boss ko kayo (you’re my boss) attitude that Noynoy had tried to project in his inaugural speech was lost the other day after the police swooped down on protesting farmers at the foot of Mendiola bridge.

The farmers who have camped out at the historic democracy bridge are seeking the speedy implementation of land distribution in Hacienda Yulo in Canlubang, Laguna and the Hacienda Luisita in Tarlac owned by the Cojuangco-Aquino family of Noynoy.

The dispersal operations of the farmers also brought back the painful memories of the Mendiola massacre in 1986 which happened also a few days into the presidency of Noynoy’s mother Cory Aquino.

Although less violent in the way it was undertaken, the dispersal of the farmers the other day sent the same message during Cory’s presidency that they should not expect too much on social equality under Noynoy.

The spiel about the poor having more attention under his administration in the inaugural speech is turning out as just another sound bite that politicians are always expected to give when faced with a crowd.

The land reform issue is turning out to be Noynoy’s political Achilles’ heel as he seems always vulnerable when confronted with it..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100705com1.html

Compromise Senate bet still possible FRONTLINE Ninez Cacho-Olivares 07/05/2010

Compromise Senate bet still possible

Ninez Cacho-Olivares
The Liberal Party (LP) may have agreed on just one bet for the Senate presidency, who is Kiko Pangilinan, with Franklin Drilon giving way.

Pangilinan has three years left and won’t be eligible for reelection, as this would be his second term in the Senate.
But does Pangilinan have the numbers to get him the top post in the Senate?
He says he has 10 senators already with him, counting himself and would need three more, which he claimed would be easy.
But the other side, said to be Manny Villar’s camp, or at least the Ed Angara-led camp, also says it has 10 senators with them. Considering the fact that there are only 23 senators, with two of them — Ping Lacson and the detained Sonny Trillanes — not around to vote, there would then be a stand-off, that is, if the claim of numbers in each camp holds true.
The stand-off could be a reality since some four to six senators from each camp say they will be voting as a bloc, which may mean that neither Pangilinan nor Villar (if he is really gunning for the post, which is doubted) nor Angara, will be able to get the Senate presidency.
This situation then could very easily end in a compromise, such as retaining Johnny Ponce-Enrile as the Senate President. Of course if one camp folds, then either the Villar camp or the Pangilinan camp gets the top slot.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100705com2.html

Pope seeks Vatican revamp with new appointments focus 07/05/2010

Pope seeks Vatican revamp with new appointments


VATICAN CITY — Pope Benedict XVI’s changes at the head of various Vatican bodies this week show his willingness to revamp the Church after it was rocked by the pedophilia scandal, Vatican experts say.

“He is imposing his style of firmness and transparency, after he realized that the pedophilia crisis risked threatening evangelization on a permanent basis,” Vatican expert Bruno Bartoloni told AFP.

This week, Benedict created a new ministry to fight secularization in traditionally Catholic countries and replaced the heads of two other important ministries after the former chiefs reached the age limit of 75.

Since his election in 2005, he has appointed new heads for 17 of the now 21 ministries at the Vatican.

“The timid intellectual has descended from his ivory tower and is showing determination in his leadership,” said Vatican observer Giancarlo Zizola.

In May, the Vatican said it would overhaul the powerful ultra-conservative Legion of Christ whose late founder Marcial Maciel was disgraced by sex abuse scandals.

In recent months, Benedict has also accepted the resignation of half a dozen bishops involved in cases of pedophilia and in cover-ups.

Recent appointments are a step forward in the “necessary general reform of the Roman Curia,” but the road ahead is still long to “bring about the changes mandated by the Second Vatican Council that (Pope) John Paul II did not have the courage to carry out, Zizola said.”

These include, according to Zizola, the “cuts in the Curia, decentralization of power and a more collective government of the Church.”... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100705com3.html

The straight path HE SAYS Aldrin Cardon 07/05/2010

The straight path

Aldrin Cardon
Okay, I guess we have to keep Kris and James to their business. It’s their relationship, anyway. And we’re not supposed to intrude into their private lives, no matter how enticing (C’mon, we enjoy it, admit it!) it has become to speak about the biggest show biz news to steal headlines from President Noynoy Aquino’s inauguration, and his singing Estudyante Blues in the grand party that followed the Luneta affair.

Besides, five days into the presidency, Noynoy has to face more pressing problems than Kris. He could leave her for James to deal with, which James did, when before the weekend, he vowed to save their marriage and work things out with his very outspoken wife, whom not a few are seeing as becoming more of a nuisance than an inspiration, like her sisters have become to Noynoy, shortly after their mother Cory’s death.

There’s a bigger nuisance Noynoy has to deal with, a pesky little woman with the heart and mind of a criminal who could afford to mount a blitzkrieg even when she’s out of Malacañang already and put Hitler to shame.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100705com4.html

Dancing to their own tune SHE SAYS Dinah S. Ventura 07/05/2010

Dancing to their own tune

Dinah S. Ventura
On her first day at work as congresswoman of the second district of Pampanga, former President Gloria Arroyo filed the Charter change resolution calling for the election of delegates to a constitutional convention (con-con) to amend some parts of the Constitution, including economic provisions.

Sen. Pia Cayetano has taken the view that her move “smacks of bad taste” and reveals that the lawmaker’s true motive for running for Congress was to extend her hold to power, as many had suspected all along, rather than a sincere desire to “serve” the people. 

Sen. Chiz Escudero does not think Arroyo intends to “quietly” go about her duties as congresswoman of Pampanga. But Sen. Francis Pangilinan doubts if she would succeed in getting the Charter changed since she wasn’t able to do so when she had all the power at her disposal.

The question is, what will President Noynoy Aquino do about it?

P-Noy, as many people have come to refer to him, has asked for more time to deal with all the issues and tasks that he must deal with at the same time. His priority, he told media at Camp Aguinaldo when he witnessed the assumption of new Armed Forces chief of staff Lt. Gen. Ricardo David recently, is to find out “ang natitira sa kaban ng bayan para pantustos sa pangangailangan ng bayan (what’s left of the nation’s coffers to fund the needs of the nation).”
.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100705com5.html

Reading sessions help Haiti children through quake trauma FEATURE 07/05/2010

Reading sessions help Haiti children through quake trauma


PORT-AU-PRINCE — When the first story began only a handful of kids sat on the wet ground, watching and listening intently as a woman read aloud to them in the Port-au-Prince neighborhood of Tabarre.

Soon a crowd of 60 formed as curious children carrying baby siblings were joined by adults, eager for diversion from the tedium that, along with the rains, has settled into Haiti’s sprawling camps since the January earthquake.
The scene repeats itself daily in the 15 tent cities where a program called Li Li Li! (Creole for Read Read Read!) works to promote literacy and help kids overcome the inevitable trauma from a catastrophe that left up to 300,000 dead.

The reader, Natacha Micourt, was an artist until the January 12 quake destroyed her studio and left her trapped under the rubble for two days. Now the 32-year-old painter earns $250 a month as a Li Li Li! reader.
Micourt acts out stories of magic hats and Clifford, the big red dog, to the delight of the children, allowing them a brief escape from the grim reality of their post-quake existence.
“The kids just love it,” she told AFP.

But Li Li Li! is not only about stress release, it is also an attempt to entrench a love for reading in a country where, before the earthquake, 44 percent of the population could not read or write, according to UN estimates.

“Illiteracy will go up even more after the earthquake because so many schools were destroyed,” Li Li Li! coordinator Germinal Jocelyn told AFP.

Jocelyn’s job is to scout out “unofficial” camps overlooked by Haitian authorities and relief organizations so the reading club can direct its efforts where they are most needed.

“NGOs don’t come here, they don’t even know these camps exist,” she told AFP of the camp in Tabarre.

Li Li Li! is the brainchild of Michelle Karshan, an American and former spokeswoman for the government of ousted Haitian president Jean-Bertrand Aristide.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100705com6.html

France ’s celebrity lawyer Haiti children through quake trauma focus 07/05/2010

France’s celebrity lawyer


PARIS — Paris has seen a run of blockbuster trials this year, involving a former dictator, a former prime minister, a huge rogue trade scandal and a billionaire heiress — and all have one thing in common.

At each of the courts trying Panama’s General Noriega, French former premier Dominique de Villepin and trader Jerome Kerviel, one man has lurked: Olivier Metzner, a lawyer whose high-profile caseload has made him a celebrity.
Pursued by television cameras, the 60-year-old entertained reporters and enraged witnesses and rival lawyers with his provocative style, showing a talent for courting the media and for getting under his opponents’ skin.
Defending Kerviel last month, Metzner stood by calmly as he provoked lawyers, prosecutors and witnesses into fits of shouting, gazing at them quizzically over his half-moon spectacles.
“I have to destabilize the opponent,” he told AFP last week at a brasserie near the courthouse where he was prosecuting Francois-Marie Banier, the man accused of defrauding billionaire L’Oreal heiress Liliane Bettencourt.
At that morning’s hearing, defence lawyer Herve Temime had bellowed in anger at Metzner’s tactics, criticising him for citing as evidence sensitive secret recordings that have turned the case into a political scandal.
“I don’t care,” Metzner said, between telephone calls and puffs on his Upmann Cuban cigar. “I’ve always been that way. I don’t bother any more about what other people think of me.”
The trial of the year has been that of France’s former Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin, who was accused of plotting to smear his long-time rival Nicolas Sarkozy and wreck his presidential bid.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100705com7.html

Angara bloc may back Enrile as Senate chief By Angie M. Rosales and Gerry Baldo 07/05/2010


Angara bloc may back Enrile as Senate chief

By Angie M. Rosales and Gerry Baldo
Senators who the Liberal Party (LP) has been courting to support the candidacy of its bet Sen. Francis Pangilinan would likely instead give their backing to current Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile, Sen. Edgardo Angara said.
Angara who commands the vote of at least five senators had said his group is looking for a Senate president “who can uphold the independence of the institution and who will pursue an agenda of reform and change,” implying that his bloc is considering a better alternative to Pangilinan who is perceived to be too closely associated with President Aquino.

“He’s still a potential (candidate). He’s still there, we cannot rule him out (of the race),” Angara said yesterday referring to Enrile.

Enrile was earlier bruited about as likely to keep his post in the coming 15th Congress in the event that there would be a “stalemate” or deadlock among senators in the choice of a new leader in the chamber.

Angara noted that besides Pangilinan, who had already announced his bid, his bloc is looking at two other choices, Enrile or Sen. Manuel Villar Jr.

His bloc included Senators Juan Miguel Zubiri, Lito Lapid, Ramon Revilla Jr. and Loren Legarda. Angara is also considering Senators Gregorio Honasan and Vicente Sotto III as part of their bloc.

Angara, however, dismissed insinuations on the statement he issued over the weekend that his bloc is not keen on electing Pangilinan because of his perceived close association with Aquino as it could eventually put into question the independence of the Senate.

Angara’s statement came a day after the LP, which is also the party of Aquino, named him as the party’s bet for the top upper chamber post.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100705hed1.html

Jinggoy urges Noynoy to draw off Davide’s Truth Commission stint 07/05/2010

Jinggoy urges Noynoy to draw off Davide’s Truth Commission stint

Sen. Jinggoy Estrada has appealed to President Aquino to reconsider his decision to appoint former Chief Justice Hilario Davide Jr. as head of the Truth Commission which would investigate wrongdoings believed to have been committed by former President Arroyo and her allies during her nine-and-a-half-year rule.

“With all due respect, Mr. President, I believe you have the purest intentions in choosing a person you believe to be most competent to head the Truth Commission. However, I share the view of so many sectors in our country that Mr. Davide is not that man for the job,” Estrada, in a statement, yesterday said.
The senator stressed: “For one, Mr. Davide is a person widely known as tainted with blatant disregard, if not gross and direct violation, of the rule of law especially when he, during the impeachment trial against my father, former President Jo-seph Ejercito Estrada, allowed the manipu-lation of the said trial which led, as planned by the conspirators, to the so-called Edsa II power grab grand design.”.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100705hed2.html

Noy’s first order puts PSC on brink of chaos By Julius Manicad 07/05/2010


Noy’s first order puts PSC on brink of chaos

By Julius Manicad
While it is expected to happen elsewhere and not in sports, Memorandum Circular No. 1, even if it was revised to plug loopholes just hours after its original form was announced by newly-elected President Aquino on Wednesday, is now tearing the bureaucracy of the Philippine Sports Commission apart.

Five PSC employees calling themselves as the “transition team” trooped to the PSC’s main office at the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex last Friday, or a day after the revised version of the memorandum was circulated, to claim that they are the rightful leaders to replace former PSC chairman Harry Angping. 

Their claim, they said, takes effect as stated in Memorandum Circular no. 1, which instructed all officials appointed by former President Arroyo to vacate their posts soon after Mr. Aquino was sworn in.

A reliable Daily Tribune source yesterday identified the five PSC employees claiming to be the rightful PSC leaders as Simeon Rivera, Marilou Cantancio, Pia and Noel Salumbides and Eduardo Clarissa. They claimed to be members of the “transition team.” ... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100705hed3.html

Runaway bus kills 15 in Cebu 07/05/2010

Runaway bus kills 15 in Cebu


Fifteen persons were killed and more than 40 others were hurt when a speeding bus slammed into a concrete fence in Toledo City, Cebu province, police yesterday said.

The bus crash on Saturday was the second deadly road accident in Cebu City in less than a month.

“Fifteen people were killed, while some 48 other passengers were hurt,” provincial police chief Senior Supt. Erson Digal said.
.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100705hed4.html

SC upholds conversion Benjamin B. Pulta 07/05/2010

SC upholds conversion

Benjamin B. Pulta
In a classic case of former President Arroyo being hoisted with her own petard, the Supreme Court (SC) has upheld a ban Arroyo imposed on the conversion of agricultural lands into commercial use which directly affected the application for conversion of 157-hectare Hacienda Bacan in Isabela, Negros Occidental owned by the family of her husband Jose Miguel “Mike” Arroyo.

The application to exempt Hacienda Bacan from coverage of the comprehensive agrarian reform program (CARP) was filed at the Department of Agrarian Reform last June 15, but DAR officials did not act on it.

In its decision citing the “exclusive authority” of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) to approve or disapprove conversion of agricultural lands to non-agricultural uses the SC’s First Division dismissed a petition questioning the legality of the memorandum issued by former Agrarian Reform Secretary Nasser Pangandaman
that temporarily suspended the processing and approval of all land use conversion applications nationwide.

Pangandaman’s move was brought about by the rice supply crisis at the time. Pangandaman issued Memorandum No. 88 on April 15, 2008 amid concerns that the worsening rice shortage at that time was an offshoot of the unabated conversion of prime agricultural lands for real estate development.

The Chamber of Real Estate and Builders Associations (CREBA) questioned the move claiming it was unconstitutional because it suspended the land use conversion without any basis. Ruling against the builders the SC, however, said CREBA’s arguments “stand on hollow ground.”

“It bears emphasis that said Memorandum No. 88 was issued upon the instruction of the President in order to address the unabated conversion of prime agricultural lands for real estate development because of the worsening rice shortage in the country at that time,” the court said in a decision penned by Associate Justice Jose P. Perez.

“Such measure was made in order to ensure that there are enough agricultural lands in which rice cultivation and production may be carried into. The issuance of said Memorandum No. 88 was made pursuant to the general welfare of the public, thus, it cannot be argued that it was made without any basis,” the court added.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100705hed5.html

DoJ moves to protect Maguindanao massacre witnesses 07/05/2010

DoJ moves to protect Maguindanao massacre witnesses


Department of Justice Secretary Leila de Lima yesterday gave stronger protection to witnesses of the Maguindanao massacre who are under threat from presumably those implicated in the worst case of political killing in the country which resulted in the death of 57 people.

De Lima’s directive came as police claimed to have arrested two suspects in the killing of a key witness against the Ampatuan clan for the November 2010 killings.

“A special team of prosecutors is sitting down with police on how to firmly and effectively address the spate of killings, violence and harassment of witnesses,” De Lima told AFP.

“The stepped-up efforts include the immediate tracking down and arrest of the others accused.”

She said close to 100 Ampatuan gunmen remained at large and continued to receive orders from their jailed patrons.

“For as long as they’re still physically out there, and seemingly with resources and communication access to and from their big bosses, the atmosphere of violence and climate of fear will subsist,” de Lima said, adding authorities needed to “neutralize” the threat they posed.

The Ampatuan clan, which ruled southern Maguindanao province for a decade, enjoyed political ties with former president Gloria Arroyo, who used the family’s huge private army as a force against separatist rebels.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100705hed6.html

Angara seeks specific plans on education, agri 07/05/2010

Angara seeks specific plans on education, agri

Senator Edgardo Angara called yesterday for a more specific plan of action as he joins President Aquino on his call to prioritize education and agriculture which the new president outlined during his inaugural address.

“President Aquino stated a lot of tactical, down to earth doable recommendations in his inaugural speech. Now we need to break them down into specifics and create a concrete plan of action to implement his key priorities,” said Angara, former Agriculture Secretary and chairman of the Education Commission (EdCom).
.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100705hed7.html

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