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From the mouth of Noynoy EDITORIAL 12/04/2010

Saturday, December 4, 2010

From the mouth of Noynoy

EDITORIAL
Click to enlarge
12/04/2010
Sometime this week, Justice chief Leila de Lima told beat reporters that in a few days, fugitive Sen. Panfilo “Ping” Lacson would be arrested, as the special National Bureau of Investigation team tracking him down, already has the information on his whereabouts in the country, but as the week is winding down, it is more probable that her special team will not be able to produce an arrested Lacson.

At the same time, she endorsed the Philippine National Police’s proposal to have a bounty of P2 million for the head of Lacson, which was rejected by the Department of Interior and Local Governments chief Jesse Robredo, who pointed out quite logically, that since the DoJ and its agencies were already monitoring Lacson, and that reliable intel information has provided them with the area where Lacson is at, there was no more need for a P2 million bounty.

Still, as it is usual for government to come up with a bounty, the DILG rejection of the reward proposal could raise suspicions that indeed, Malacañang is coddling Lacson, especially since Noynoy Aquino was quoted as telling the Inquirer that arresting Lacson is not “his priority” and that he is more concerned with the arrest of persons involved in violent crimes and who continue to victimize other citizens..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101204com1.html

How not to catch a suspect FRONTLINE Ninez Cacho-Olivares 12/04/2010

How not to catch a suspect

FRONTLINE
Ninez Cacho-Olivares
12/04/2010
With the Court of Appeals (CA) denying yesterday fugitive Sen. Panfilo “Ping” Lacson’s petition for a temporary restraining order (TRO) on the arrest warrant issued against him by a lower court for his alleged involvement in the Dacer-Corbito double murders, as well as his plea for a reinvestigation of his case at the Department of Justice (DoJ), its chief, Leila de Lima, has no choice but to make good her order to the special National Bureau of Investigaton (NBI) team to find and arrest Lacson, the principal suspect in the Dacer-Corbito murder case.

It is expected, based on De Lima’s claim that reliable information has it that Lacson’s whereabouts have already been pinpointed and that she has given the NBI, and presumably, the Philippine National Police, the order to find the fugitive senator and arrest him, for him to face trial and be provided due process.

But can she and her NBI deliver? There certainly are doubts.

Many times, the style of the NBI, as well as the DoJ, police and the military -- present and previous governments are no exception -- is to publicly claim that they have already identified the suspects, and know their whereabouts supposedly based on intelligence data, even when they are clueless about such things..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101204com2.html

Singapore in tough environmental balancing act FEATURE 12/04/2010

Singapore in tough environmental balancing act

FEATURE

12/04/2010
SINGAPORE — Singapore prides itself on being a clean and green city but a booming economy and a high-consumption lifestyle have made it one of the world’s biggest carbon polluters per person.

As a major United Nations summit is being held in Mexico to find ways of curbing the carbon emissions blamed for global warming, Singapore’s environmental balancing act poses challenging questions for the rest of Asia and the world.

Singapore’s green credentials are in many ways very strong and it is establishing itself as a regional renewable energy hub.

Yet, if all Asians emulated Singaporeans’ modern and often luxurious lifestyles, greenhouse gas emissions would spike alarmingly.

“If everyone in the world enjoyed the same level of consumption as the average Singaporean, we would need three planets to meet the demands placed on our resources,” World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) spokesman Chris Chaplin said.

Singapore was last month listed by the British global risk advisory firm Maplecroft as the world’s seventh largest carbon dioxide (CO2) emitter relative to its population size..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20101204com3.html

Widows in Kananga Murders Call for Justice

Widows in Kananga Murders Call for Justice

 November 15 began like any other day for the families of Julio Borromeo and Sofronio Cortez. Borromeo was even excited because his work with Leonardo Co would be his highest paying job so far. But by the afternoon of that day, the lives of their families changed forever.
By ANNE MARXZE D. UMIL

Bulatlat.com
KANANGA, LEYTE – It was not only Glenda Co, wife of killed botanist Leonard Co, who lost a husband when soldiers from the 19th Infantry Battalion (IB) allegedly fired at Co’s team on that fateful day of Nov. 15 while Co was conducting work inside the compound of the Lopez-owned Energy Development Corporation (EDC). Teresa Borromeo, 45 and Arsenia Cortez, 52 also lost the men to whom they shared their life with.
In a fact-finding mission led by Agham held last Nov. 26 to 28 in Kananga, Leyte, Bulatlat interviewed the wives of the two other victims Julio Borromeo and Sofronio Cortez. “We want justice. We cannot accept that they died just like that,” Arsenia said.


Teresa Borromeo, 45 is not only grieving for the loss of her husband; she does not know how to provide for the needs of their six children. (Photo by Anne Marxze D. Umil / bulatlat.com)
For Teresa, it was unbelievable that his husband and the rest of Co’s team were caught in a gun battle between the New People’s Army (NPA) and the 19th IB. “It is impossible. All those who work for the EDC have their IDs and some have their uniforms. How could the military mistakenly identify them as NPA?” said Teresa.

Their lives were never the same especially for Teresa. Her husband Julio is the only breadwinner of the family and they have six children, the youngest is six years old.

For now, the EDC is supporting the family. The company gave the family sacks of rice, said Estelita Bayo, their godmother in their wedding. They live in barangay Tongonan, Ormoc, Leyte.

Sofronio, on the other hand, was a just bit well off. He was a regular employee of EDC for 26 years and worked as a forest guard. He has three children, two of whom already finished college and the youngest, 16, is already in fourth year high school. The family lives in Baybay, Ormoc City..... MORE

SourceBulatlat.com

URL: http://bulatlat.com/main/2010/12/04/widows-in-kananga-murders-call-for-justice/

Kuliglig Drivers Condemn Violent Dispersal by Police, Gain Lawmakers’ Support

 Kuliglig Drivers Condemn Violent Dispersal by Police, Gain Lawmakers’ Support

By JANESS ANN J. ELLAO
Bulatlat.com
Sidebar: Kuliglig, Pedicab Drivers Protest Highlights Lack in Jobs, Mass Transport
MANILA — The kuliglig is one of the quickest ways to go in and around Metro Manila’s inner streets. It can navigate the smallest alleys with ease.

If only the struggle by the drivers of these uniquely Filipino contraptions to keep their jobs and livelihood were as trouble-free.

In fact, the efforts to keep the “linyas,” or what passes for a public-transport route franchise, for the kuligligs have been arduous for the many people who earn primarily from owning and driving these vehicles.

“(Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim) did not give us any jobs. We were the ones who found this. What is his right to take it away from us?” Fernando Picorro, spokesman of the Alyansa ng Nagkakaisang Pedicab at Kuliglig Drivers ng Maynila (ALNAPEDKU), said in a press conference on December 2. Picorro and his group urged both the local and national government to act in the interest of poor people like the kuliglig drivers.


Fernando Picorro, spokesman of Alyansa ng Nagkakaisang Pedicab at Kuliglig Drivers ng Maynila (Photo by Janess Ann J. Ellao / bulatlat.com)
Through Executive Order Nos. 16 and 17, Lim banned kuligligs from Manila’s main streets. He altogether banned the kuliglig from the streets of Ermita. Both executive orders were issued on September 2. But in an interview, Picorro said the city government “did not conduct any consultation with us.”

EO No. 16 stipulates that the engines that the kuligligs use could not be registered with the Land Transportation Office. It said there has been “mounting complaints against their continued operation as they cause pollution and contribute to the worsening traffic situation.”

The EO No. 17, on the other hand, states that banning the operation of three-wheeled vehicles from Ermita would meet the “need to maintain road sanity and full compliance with all traffic rules.”.... MORE

SourceBulatlat.com

URL: http://bulatlat.com/main/2010/12/04/kuliglig-drivers-condemn-violent-dispersal-by-police-gain-lawmakers-support/

Students Stand Firm, Insist SUC Budget Cuts Are Real

Students Stand Firm, Insist SUC Budget Cuts Are Real

With or without the removal of the congressional insertions, Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano said, the budget for SUCs would remain lower than last year’s. He said these congressional insertions were mainly allotted for scholarships and capital outlay while it is the SUCs MOOE that has suffered greatly from the budget cut. 

By JANESS ANN J. ELLAO
Bulatlat.com

MANILA — Students from state universities and colleges (SUCs) stand firm that budget cuts are no ‘ghosts.’ But if by ghost, Sen. Franklin Drilon and Vicente Sotto III means an “evil monster,” Kilos na Laban sa Budget Cut, an alliance of students from state schools, said then they would agree that these ghosts are for real.

“How could they deny the budget cuts when it was the president himself who first broke the news, not the Kabataan Party or any student group,” Kabataan Rep. Raymond Palatino said during the December 1 protest action of SUC students in front of the Senate. They were referring to President Benigno S. Aquino III’s budget message dated August 24 where he said the government would be “gradually reducing the subsidy to SUCs to push them toward becoming self-sufficient and financially independent.”

ACT Teachers Rep. Antonio Tinio joins students and teachers in protest rally against budget cut on education. (Photo by Janess Ann J. Ellao / bulatlat.com)

The Aquino administration has been criticized by youth and student groups for the massive slashing of the budget of SUCs amounting to P1.1 billion ($24.5 million at an exchange rate of $1 = P44.83). The largest group of students that gathered against the budget cut was on December 1, when thousands of students trooped to the Senate, which was then deliberating the proposed 2011 budget.

“We will not be cowed. We have a duty to our nation and we have a future to fight for,” Vencer Crisostomo, spokesperson of the Kilos Na Laban sa Budget Cut, said.

Ghosts
 
In a report, Budget Secretary Butch Abad denied that there would be budget cuts in SUCs in the proposed 2011 budget, adding that it is actually higher by P2.4 billion ($55.8 million) compared to last year. He added that there is an increase in the budget for personnel services because of the pending increase in teachers’ pay as mandated by the Salary Standardization Law 3, which was passed last Congress..... MORE

SourceBulatlat.com

URL: http://bulatlat.com/main/2010/12/04/students-stand-firm-suc-budget-cuts-not-ghosts

Worldwide Christian Group Alarmed by Continuing Rights Violations in Philippines

Worldwide Christian Group Alarmed by Continuing Rights Violations in Philippines


“We saw and heard the heart-breaking stories of victims of human rights abuses and their family members. We saw and felt the pain of those who have lost loved ones by extrajudicial killings, arbitrary detentions, torture and enforced disappearance,” the nine-member delegation of the World Council of Churches said in a statement. 

By RONALYN V. OLEA
Bulatlat.com

MANILA — An international delegation of church leaders from the World Council of Churches (WCC) came to the country Dec. 1 and witnessed the continuing human rights violations under the Aquino administration.

The World Council of Churches (WCC) is a worldwide fellowship of 349 churches, denominations and church fellowships in more than 110 countries and territories representing 560 million Christians. It is based in Geneva, Switzerland and has a Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations.

The visit is part of the WCC’s “Living Letters” where representatives from other countries make an organized visit to a given host country for a particular compelling reason. They were hosted by the National Council of Churches in the Philippines (NCCP).

Listen to the Rev. Dan Sandu of the Romanian Orthodox Church read the statement by the World Council of Churches about the human-rights violations in the Philippines.
“We saw and heard the heart-breaking stories of victims of human rights abuses and their family members. We saw and felt the pain of those who have lost loved ones by extrajudicial killings, arbitrary detentions, torture and enforced disappearance,” the nine-member delegation said in a statement.

A team visited the Morong 43 and had a dialogue with Secretary Leila de Lima of the Department of Justice while another team visited the workers of Hacienda Luisita. Before that, the delegates also talked with families of victims of human rights violations under both the Arroyo and Aquino presidencies.


The delegation of the World Council of Churches during a press conference on Saturday. (Photo by Ronalyn V. Olea / bulatlat.com)
The Morong 43 are the 43 health workers arrested on Feb. 6 in Morong, Rizal by about 300 combined elements of the police and military. Thirty-eight are now detained at Camp Bagong Diwa while five have remained under military custody. They started their hunger strike, Dec. 3 to pressure the government for their release.

“I have not seen any change,” Tony Waworuntu, former staff of the Christian Conference of Asia and a member of the delegation, said in a press conference, Dec. 4. Waworuntu first visited the Philippines in 2005 as part of the WCC delegation..... MORE

SourceBulatlat.com

URL: http://bulatlat.com/main/2010/12/04/delegation-from-world-council-of-churches-concerned-about-continuing-rights-violations/

Morong 43 Start Hunger Strike

 Morong 43 Start Hunger Strike

“Every day in jail is an injustice to us,” the health workers said. “Our action today and in the succeeding days is a call to President Aquino to simply order the withdrawal of the case against us forthwith so that we may be immediately and unconditionally released.”

By RONALYN V. OLEA
Bulatlat.com
MANILA – After almost ten months in detention, the 43 health workers started their hunger strike early morning of Dec. 3.

“Today we begin our hunger strike. This is the only course of action left to us to end our continued illegal detention, there being no clear action by the government for our unconditional release,” the Morong 43 said in a statement released to the media.


Relatives and supporters of the Morong 43 gather at the Iglesia Filipina Independiente (IFI) national cathedral and start their sympathy fasting. (Photo by Ronalyn V. Olea / bulatlat.com)
 The health workers, now known as the Morong 43, were arrested on Feb. 6 in Morong, Rizal by around 300 combined elements of the police and military. They were charged with illegal possession of firearms and explosives. The health workers said they were subjected to physical and psychological torture during their detention at Camp Capinpin in Tanay, Rizal. Thirty-eight have been transferred to civilian detention facilities at Camp Bagong Diwa since May 1 and five have remained under military custody.

“Every day in jail is an injustice to us,” the health workers said.

Amid calls from the international community and protest actions here and abroad, President Benigno S. Aquino III has decided to leave to case of the Morong 43 to the local court. “The president himself has admitted that our arrest was based on a defective warrant and that “evidence wrongly gotten cannot be used.” Yet despite these findings, there are no clear indications that the charges against us will be withdrawn anytime soon,” they said..... MORE

SourceBulatlat.com

URL: http://bulatlat.com/main/2010/12/03/morong-43-start-hunger-strike/

Lacson loses CA case; arrest order still on By Benjamin B. Pulta 12/04/2010

PING’S LAWYER SAYS DOJ CHIEF MISINFORMED ON MURDER INDICTMENT

Lacson loses CA case; arrest order still on

By Benjamin B. Pulta 12/04/2010

The law is closing in on fugitive Sen. Panfilo “Ping” Lacson — at least as far as the validity of his arrest warrant, along with denial of his call for a review of his indictment as the principal accused in the double murder of publicist Salvador “Bubby” Dacer and his driver Emanuel Corbito last November 2000.

The Court of Appeals (CA) yesterday turned down the bid of fugitive Lacson for freedom pending trial of the case lodged against him in a Manila court in connection with the double murder case.

In a two-page resolution, the sixth division of the appellate court denied Lacson’s application for the issuance of a temporary restraining order (TRO) against the arrest warrant issued by Manila regional trial court (RTC) Branch 18 against him last February.

“Finding the absence of clear and positive right as well as the existence of an urgent and permanent necessity for the writ to prevent serious damages, the prayer of injunctive relief is denied,” stated the ruling penned by Associate Justice Ramon Bato Jr..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101204hed1.html

WikiLeaks’ site back with new address after 6 hours 12/04/2010

WikiLeaks’ site back with new address after 6 hours

12/04/2010
PARIS — The whistle-blower website WikiLeaks was back on line Friday with a new Swiss address — wikileaks.ch — six hours after its previous domain name — wikileaks.org — was shut down.

“WikiLeaks moves to Switzerland,” the group declared on Twitter, although an Internet trace of the new domain name suggested that the site itself is still hosted in Sweden and in France.

Web users accessing the wikileaks.ch address are directed to a page under the URL http://213.251.145.96/ — which gives them access to the former site, including a massive trove of leaked US diplomatic traffic.

The original wikileaks.org domain was taken offline at 0300 GMT Friday by its American domain name system provider, EveryDNS.net, following reports of massive cyber attacks on the site.

“The interference at issue arises from the fact that wikileaks.org has become the target of multiple distributed denial of service (DDOS) attacks,” EveryDNS.net said in a statement..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101204hed2.html

Gov’t, Reds to resume talks; truce declared 12/04/2010

Gov’t, Reds to resume talks; truce declared

12/04/2010
After six years of suspension, the Philippine government and communist rebels have agreed to resume formal peace talks in February next year.

Negotiating panels from the government and the National Democratic Front (NDF), that met in Hong Kong for informal talks last Dec. 1 and 2, also agreed to a ceasefire for Christmas and New Year.

The two sides announced that talks are tentatively set on Feb. 19 to 25, 2011 in Oslo, Norway. They also agreed to have preliminary talks tentatively set on Jan. 14 to 18, 2011 also in Oslo.

The schedules for the formal talks will be confirmed after consultations with the other panel members of both sides. The tentative dates of the meeting and formal talks will be presented to the Royal Norwegian Government, the third party facilitator of the peace negotiations through Ambassador Ture Lundh.

President Aquino yesterday also ordered the suspension of military operations (Somo) against communist rebels during the entire holiday season.

The Somo will be in effect for 18 days from Dec. 16 up to midnight of Jan. 3, 2011..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101204hed3.html

Palace welcomes GMA Palace welcomes GMA 12/04/2010

Palace welcomes GMA Palace welcomes GMA

12/04/2010
This time Malacañang is willing to give President Aquino’s predecessor the benefit of the doubt, with a Palace official saying they have no intention to share the same suspicions held by the concerned officials of the Gymnastics Association of the Philippines (GAP) about the alleged ulterior agenda of former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Arroyo in “donating” P500,000 for the benefit of the country’s gymnasts.

“I would not like to question the motives of Congresswoman Arroyo. If the donation was done to help our athletes, then she’s very welcome and anybody who wishes to make the same donation is also very welcome to help our athletes,” deputy presidential spokesman Abigail Valte said in a chance interview.

But President Aquino, when asked if his administration has something to be concerned over this looming development, said in a text message: “First I heard of it. Sports should not (be) politicized.”

In an exclusive story published by the Tribune last Friday, a member of the GAP board confirmed they received a P500,000 donation from Arroyo’s pocket but the timing of which is being questioned.

The Tribune source reportedly claimed that such act of kindness shown by Arroyo to the GAP may have something to do with her supposed bid to make the GAP as a stepping stone en route to her alleged plans to grab control of the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) which is currently headed by the Chief Executive’s uncle, Jose “Peping” Cojuangco..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101204hed4.html

PING’S LAWYER SAYS DOJ CHIEF MISINFORMED ON MURDER INDICTMENT Lacson loses CA case; arrest order still on By Benjamin B. Pulta 12/04/2010

PING’S LAWYER SAYS DOJ CHIEF MISINFORMED ON MURDER INDICTMENT

Lacson loses CA case; arrest order still on

By Benjamin B. Pulta 12/04/2010

The law is closing in on fugitive Sen. Panfilo “Ping” Lacson — at least as far as the validity of his arrest warrant, along with denial of his call for a review of his indictment as the principal accused in the double murder of publicist Salvador “Bubby” Dacer and his driver Emanuel Corbito last November 2000.

The Court of Appeals (CA) yesterday turned down the bid of fugitive Lacson for freedom pending trial of the case lodged against him in a Manila court in connection with the double murder case.

In a two-page resolution, the sixth division of the appellate court denied Lacson’s application for the issuance of a temporary restraining order (TRO) against the arrest warrant issued by Manila regional trial court (RTC) Branch 18 against him last February.

“Finding the absence of clear and positive right as well as the existence of an urgent and permanent necessity for the writ to prevent serious damages, the prayer of injunctive relief is denied,” stated the ruling penned by Associate Justice Ramon Bato Jr.

Associate Justice Juan Enriquez Jr. and Florito Macalino concurred in the resolution..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101204hed1.html

WikiLeaks’ site back with new address after 6 hours 12/04/2010

WikiLeaks’ site back with new address after 6 hours

12/04/2010
PARIS — The whistle-blower website WikiLeaks was back on line Friday with a new Swiss address — wikileaks.ch — six hours after its previous domain name — wikileaks.org — was shut down.

“WikiLeaks moves to Switzerland,” the group declared on Twitter, although an Internet trace of the new domain name suggested that the site itself is still hosted in Sweden and in France.

Web users accessing the wikileaks.ch address are directed to a page under the URL http://213.251.145.96/ — which gives them access to the former site, including a massive trove of leaked US diplomatic traffic.

The original wikileaks.org domain was taken offline at 0300 GMT Friday by its American domain name system provider, EveryDNS.net, following reports of massive cyber attacks on the site.

“The interference at issue arises from the fact that wikileaks.org has become the target of multiple distributed denial of service (DDOS) attacks,” EveryDNS.net said in a statement..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101204hed2.html

Gov’t, Reds to resume talks; truce declared 12/04/2010

Gov’t, Reds to resume talks; truce declared

12/04/2010
After six years of suspension, the Philippine government and communist rebels have agreed to resume formal peace talks in February next year.

Negotiating panels from the government and the National Democratic Front (NDF), that met in Hong Kong for informal talks last Dec. 1 and 2, also agreed to a ceasefire for Christmas and New Year.

The two sides announced that talks are tentatively set on Feb. 19 to 25, 2011 in Oslo, Norway. They also agreed to have preliminary talks tentatively set on Jan. 14 to 18, 2011 also in Oslo.

The schedules for the formal talks will be confirmed after consultations with the other panel members of both sides. The tentative dates of the meeting and formal talks will be presented to the Royal Norwegian Government, the third party facilitator of the peace negotiations through Ambassador Ture Lundh.

President Aquino yesterday also ordered the suspension of military operations (Somo) against communist rebels during the entire holiday season.

The Somo will be in effect for 18 days from Dec. 16 up to midnight of Jan. 3, 2011..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101204hed3.html

Palace welcomes GMA Palace welcomes GMA 12/04/2010

Palace welcomes GMA Palace welcomes GMA

12/04/2010
This time Malacañang is willing to give President Aquino’s predecessor the benefit of the doubt, with a Palace official saying they have no intention to share the same suspicions held by the concerned officials of the Gymnastics Association of the Philippines (GAP) about the alleged ulterior agenda of former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Arroyo in “donating” P500,000 for the benefit of the country’s gymnasts.

“I would not like to question the motives of Congresswoman Arroyo. If the donation was done to help our athletes, then she’s very welcome and anybody who wishes to make the same donation is also very welcome to help our athletes,” deputy presidential spokesman Abigail Valte said in a chance interview.

But President Aquino, when asked if his administration has something to be concerned over this looming development, said in a text message: “First I heard of it. Sports should not (be) politicized.”

In an exclusive story published by the Tribune last Friday, a member of the GAP board confirmed they received a P500,000 donation from Arroyo’s pocket but the timing of which is being questioned..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101204hed4.html

State workers to fight CCT even under a new DSWD chief By Gerry Baldo 12/04/2010

State workers to fight CCT even under a new DSWD chief

By Gerry Baldo 12/04/2010
Unions representing government workers are set to fight a protracted battle against the implementation of the P21-billion conditional cash transfer (CCT) of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) even under a new secretary in the event that Corazon “Dinky” Soliman is replaced.

The government workers under the group Wage Fight and the National Fede-ration of Employees Associations of the Department of Agriculture (Nafeda) have noted that the CCT would promote mendicancy and could replace a serious job generation scheme to wean the poor away from poverty.

Ferdinand Gaite, convenor of Wage Fight that spearheaded the campaign for higher salary last Nov. 30, slammed Budget Secretary Florencio “Butch” Abad for crafting a budget that took P8 billion from the National Food Authority (NFA) and shifted it to the DSWD that Soliman heads.

Soliman’s department gained a 123-percent budget increase.

Abad, Soliman and Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima belong to the so-called Hyatt 10 that broke away from the Arroyo administration amid speculations that the government would fall following the alleged massive election fraud highlighted by the “Hello Garci” scandal..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20101204hed5.html

Armed Forces belittles impact of hunger strike by ‘Morong 43’ By Mario J. Mallari 12/04/2010

Armed Forces belittles impact of hunger strike by ‘Morong 43’

By Mario J. Mallari 12/04/2010

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) yesterday belittled the impact of the hunger strike staged by members of the so-called “Morong 43” to their case.

“Remember that the justice system revolves around evidence… so this may have nil impact on the outcome of the cases at hand,” said AFP spokesman Brig. Gen. Jose Mabanta Jr.

Mabanta said the military sees nothing wrong with the hunger strike.

“We understand the stressful situation of the “Morong 43” as individuals. This is a democratic and free society and they can express their sentiments in whatever way they want,” said Mabanta.

The so-called “Morong 43” were captured by combined police and military operatives last Feb. 6 in a private residence in Morong town, Rizal allegedly while conducting bomb-making training. They were tagged as members and leaders of the communist New People’s Army (NPA).

Various firearms and explosives components were recovered during the operation..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20101204nat3.html

Leak an isolated case, says FPIC By Benjamin B. Pulta 12/04/2010

Leak an isolated case, says FPIC

By Benjamin B. Pulta 12/04/2010

Lawyers of the Lopez-controlled First Philippine Industrial Corp. (FPIC) are asking the Supreme Court (SC) to take a second look at the writ issued by the tribunal suspending the operation of its 117-kilometer petroleum supply pipeline which supplied 60 percent of the fuel supply for Metro Manila and nearby provinces.

In a 32-page pleading, FPIC through its lawyers Mario Bautista and Jaime Hofilena said it “has exercised the required reasonable diligence to secure the safety of the pipelines and reduce all environmental degradation risks to the minimum.”

“FPIC ... cannot be deemed an insurer against any and all risks pertaining to the operation of its business. But even as FPIC maintains that it has not violated any laws, it has engaged the services of experts to assist in ascertaining what the cause or causes of the leak was/were,” they stressed.

FPIC filed the return in connection with a suit filed by residents of West Tower Condominium seeking a closure of the entire pipeline in the meantime..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20101204nat1.html

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