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Ex- AFP CoS got P164 - M ‘pabaon’ By Angie M. Rosales 02/04/2011

Friday, February 4, 2011

VILLANUEVA, LINKED TO MILITARY PERSONAL PORK BARREL

Ex- AFP CoS got P164 - M ‘pabaon’

By Angie M. Rosales 02/04/2011

The corruption in the military at high levels is bigger than originally thought, with yet another bombshell dropped yesterday, bringing forth the information that even bigger send-off money is given to departing Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chiefs of Staff (CoS), apart from at least two military chiefs engaging in juggling AFP funds and diverted to their private accounts while using these juggled funds as their own personal “pork barrel.”

Former military budget officer Col. George Rabusa, in his latest revelations before the Senate blue ribbon committee yesterday, testified that he had given retired Maj. Gen. Carlos Garcia, former military comptroller, P164 million which Garcia said was the amount needed as a “send-off” gift to former AFP Chief of Staff Gen. Diomedio Villanueva when the latter retired from the service and the more than $2 million “tax refund” on a botched $5-million contract.

Rabusa said ex-AFP CoS Roy Cimatu while still deputy chief of staff, at one time, ordered him to come up with $2 million within a period of one week.

This was in relation to the $5-million contract that allegedly pertains to a clandestine acquisition
of an unmanned aerial vehicle (AUV) involving supposedly Chief of Staff Angie Reyes, Villanueva, Cimatu and Garcia..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110204hed1.html

SC upholds RP commitment not to prosecute US soldiers 02/04/2011

SC upholds RP commitment not to prosecute US soldiers

02/04/2011
The Supreme Court has upheld an agreement between the Philippine and the United States governments signed eight years ago prohibiting the filing of criminal charges against American soldiers before the International Criminal Court (ICC).

In a 44-page decision signed by Associate Justice Presbitero Velasco Jr., the court en banc with two magistrates dissenting dismissed the petition filed by militant group Bayan Muna seeking to declare the agreement unconstitutional.

The group claimed that former President Arroyo and the Department of Foreign Affairs committed grave abuse of discretion for concluding the RP-US non-surrender deal through an executive agreement.

Bayan Muna insisted that the Philippine government, in effect, abandoned its recourse through the Rome Statute to prosecute persons, including American troops, who have committed crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and the crime of aggression..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110204hed2.html

RP to repatriate 26 Pinoys from Egypt as Cairo battle rages By Michaela P. del Callar 02/04/2011

RP to repatriate 26 Pinoys from Egypt as Cairo battle rages

By Michaela P. del Callar 02/04/2011

The first batch of 27 Filipinos from Egypt is due to arrive in the Philippines tomorrow on a chartered evacuation flight as clashes intensified between supporters and opponents of President Hosni Mubarak, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) yesterday said.

Twelve women, nine minors and five men have availed themselves of voluntary repatriation to Manila, it added.

“Three are nurses from the Dar Al Fouad Hospital, while the rest are household service workers and Filipino scholars at the Al-Azhar University. The scholars will be joined by their families,” the department said.

Sixteen Filipinos are from Cairo’s Maadi area, three are from the Dar Al Fouad Hospital in Giza and five are from Nasr City. Two are already at the embassy’s custody..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110204hed3.html

Taiwan slams RP’s deportation of 14 nationals to China 02/04/2011

Taiwan slams RP’s deportation of 14 nationals to China

02/04/2011
President Aquino and his government have again ruffled economic-diplomatic feathers.
Taiwan has denounced the Philippine govern-ment’s deportation of 14 Taiwanese involved in racketeering to China and warned the Aquino administration that it will “reexamine” its relations with Manila as a consequence.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Taiwan, in a statement, said the Aquino administration’s
handling of case was a “violation of the jurisdiction principle of nationality and its own legal procedures.”
Taiwan expressed “strong protest” and will “seriously reexamine its exchanges, “ including its cooperation projects, with the Philippines , the ministry said.

Taiwan is home to around 100,000 Filipino workers. Around 20,000 work as caregivers, earning at least P30,000 a month while the rest are employed in electronic assembly and manufacturing factories..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110204hed4.html

Ping Lacson cleared, expected to resurface By Benjamin B. Pulta 02/04/2011

Ping Lacson cleared, expected to resurface

By Benjamin B. Pulta 02/04/2011

Remember him?
Missing lawmaker Panfilo “Ping” Lacson can finally come in from the cold after a ruling by the Court of Appeals (CA) ordered the dismissal of the criminal charges against him in connection with the 2000 murders of publicist Salvador “Bubby” Dacer and his driver Emmanuel Corbito.

In an 80-page decision, the appellate court’s Special Sixth Division through Associate Justice Ramon Bato Jr. granted Lacson’s petition and overturned a Manila court’s twin rulings dated Feb. 4, 2010 and July 23 which found probable cause against Lacson and ordered his arrest, respectively.

“The orders of public respondent court (Manila Trial Court Branch 18) finding probable cause for the issuance of warrants of arrest against petitioner (Lacson) are nullified and set aside. The informations in the criminal cases are hereby dismissed,” the CA ordered.

The decision which was concurred in by Associate Justices Juan Enriquez Jr. and Isaias Dicdican said that “there being no probable cause to legally justify the filing of two separate informations for murder against petitioner (Lacson), consistent with his constitutional right to be presumed innocent and in consonance with existing jurisprudence, he (Lacson) should be relieved of the pain and agony of trial.”.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110204hed5.html

Gov’t can’t rescind Garcia plea bargain By Angie M. Rosales 02/04/2011

Gov’t can’t rescind Garcia plea bargain

By Angie M. Rosales 02/04/2011

From all indications, the plea bargain between former Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) comptroller Maj. Gen. Carlos Garcia and the Sandiganbayan is a done deal and cannot be withdrawn, and with it the futility of President Aquino’s order to have it rescinded and have Garcia face the original plunder charges due to the principle of double jeopardy as Garcia had already pleaded guilty to a lesser offense, proceedings in yesterday’s Senate inquiry on Garcia’s plea bargain agreement indicated.

After entering into the agreement with Garcia, where government will be assured of a return of a P135 million out of the P300 million taxpayers’ funds he allegedly amassed, state prosecutors also opened themselves up to committing “double jeopardy.” Senate probers yesterday found out that withdrawal of the plea bargain agreement entered into by the Office of the Special Prosecutor with Garcia may no longer be feasible because the Sandiganbayan has already, in effect, approved it.

The anti-graft court’s approval, as admitted by one of the prosecutors who are under the Office of the Ombudsman, has been manifested by allowing the accused, Garcia, to plead guilty to a lesser offense..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110204hed6.html

SC issues ruling on Lakas-Kampi merger By Benjamin B. Pulta 02/04/2011

SC issues ruling on Lakas-Kampi merger

By Benjamin B. Pulta 02/04/2011

The Supreme Court (SC) has upheld an earlier decision for the legality of the merger of Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (Lakas-CMD) and the Kabalikat ng Malayang Pilipino (Kampi) for the May 2010 national elections.

In its resolution dated Jan. 11, the SC denied with finality the motion for reconsideration filed by former Speaker Jose de Venecia Jr., who had questioned the union of two of the largest political parties in the country before the Commission on Elections (Comelec) and the SC.

Lakas-Kampi was accredited by the Comelec as the dominant ruling party during the last presidential elections with former Defense Secretary Gilbert “Gibo” Teodoro Jr. as its standard bearer.

The high court ruled that De Venecia’s motion for reconsideration raised “no substantial arguments” which would warrant the reversal of its Dec. 16, 2009 resolution..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20110204nat2.html

Air Force chief vouches whistle-blower Lim’s integrity 02/04/2011

Air Force chief vouches whistle-blower Lim’s integrity

02/04/2011
The Philippine Air Force (PAF) leadership yesterday vouched for the integrity of Col. Antonio Lim, who served under retired Lt. Col. George Rabusa during his time as AFP budget officer, as an Air Force officer.

A member of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) Class of 1986, Lim is presently assigned as operations officer of the PAF’s 3rd Air Division based in Zamboanga City.

“He is a member of good standing in the Air Force. He is a seasoned pilot, instructor pilot. He performed as expected as an officer and a pilot,” said Air Force spokesman Lt. Col. Miguel Ernesto Okol of Lim.

Prior to his present assignment in Zamboanga City, Lim was the commander of the Air Force’s Tactical Operations Group-9 based in Jolo, Sulu..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20110204nat5.html

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