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The truth, and nothing but EDITORIAL 02/23/2011

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The truth, and nothing but

EDITORIAL
Click to enlarge
02/23/2011
There went the Palace damage control team again, claiming that Noynoy Aquino did not ask the advertising group with whom he had a meeting to boycott the news organizations that are critical of him and his administration.

This denial comes from the same President — through his spokesman — and the same administration that called on the advertisers to place their advertisements in media that exercise responsible journalism, that tell the truth and are fair, and reject the media organizations that engage in “sensationalism,” in “untruths” and media that are not fair.

Malacañang on Monday clarified that Noynoy was not calling on advertisers to boycott news organizations that are critical of him and his government during a speech he delivered before newly-inducted members of the Advertising Board of the Philippines (AdBoard) last week.

Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda claimed that Noynoy was merely encouraging the AdBoard to help the government in urging media organizations to be more fair in their treatment of news stories about the administration..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110223com1.html

Impossible changes FRONTLINE Ninez Cacho-Olivares 02/23/2011

Impossible changes

FRONTLINE
Ninez Cacho-Olivares
02/23/2011
Former Chief Justice Reynato Puno, speaking before a UP crowd, pushed a shift to the parliamentary form of government which he said would lead to the restoration of the voice of the sovereign Filipino people, adding that the people are “fed up with elitism — of the royal or the blue blood.”

He was quoted as saying that “we fought against a different kind of elitism. It may not be elitism coming from the royal blood but elitism nonetheless. The rule of the few over the majority of the people. People power changed that kind of elitism.”

That’s his opinion, but I certainly beg to differ — and on the point of shifting to a parliamentary form in restoring the voice of the people, which Puno says will do away with the type of Philippine elitism where the rule of the few is superior to the majority of the people.

The past decades have proved that our Congress, which consists of the so-called representatives of the people, and the voice of the people, hardly represent the people and neither are they the voice of the people..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110223com2.html

Amid Mideast unrest, is China next? FEATURE 02/23/2011

Amid Mideast unrest, is China next?

FEATURE

02/23/2011
BEIJING — Like many Arab nations, China has one-party rule, corruption and soaring food prices — but experts say that its stunning record of economic success militates against pressure for revolutionary change.

A fear of social chaos among a population who suffered through the Cultural Revolution and the feeling that there is a better future, even under the current political system, also make revolt unlikely, they say.

A web campaign calling for demonstrations Sunday in 13 major Chinese cities similar to those that brought down the regimes in Egypt and Tunisia was met with a massive security clampdown and the arrest of several top activists.

China’s ruling Communist party has seemingly learned the lessons of the 1989 Tiananmen Square democracy protests, which ended in a bloody crackdown that saw hundreds, if not thousands, killed by army fire in the heart of Beijing..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110223com3.html

Roxas’ unenviable task C.R.O.S.S.R.O.A.D.S Jonathan De la Cruz 02/23/2011

Roxas’ unenviable task

C.R.O.S.S.R.O.A.D.S
Jonathan De la Cruz
02/23/2011
I hope former Sen. Mar Roxas’ trip to Taiwan as P-Noy’s personal emissary to explain, as Malacañang puts it, the controversial deportation of 14 Taiwanese nationals to the People’s Republic of China (PRC) will assuage Taiwan. At least, that will put this issue to rest and reinstate, if not enhance our friendly relations with the island state. It is an unenviable task. After all, it comes right after his political adversary, Vice-President Jojo Binay’s success in staying the execution of the three Filipinos on death row in China. It also comes in the face of the Taiwanese authorities’ very public statements and initiatives expressing displeasure about the said incident. In fact, they have gone out of their way, as it were, to really put us on the defensive just a little short of cutting our ties altogether. They have their resident representative in Manila for “consultations,” slowed down the issuance of visas for Filipinos and, on the eve of Roxas’ departure, upped the ante altogether by issuing what maybe considered a very serious, almost undiplomatic, harangue demanding an official apology from the Philippine government..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110223com4.html

Limbless singer gives voice to India’s rural poor focus 02/23/2011

Limbless singer gives voice to India’s rural poor

focus

02/23/2011
NEW DELHI — Bant Singh, a scarred survivor of class violence in rural India, has an indisputable claim to be a voice for India’s impoverished and muted millions.

The folk singer lost both legs and an arm in an attack five years ago after he dared to challenge high-caste landlords in his area of northwestern state of Punjab who had raped his 17-year-old daughter.

Set upon by a gang armed with iron bars, he was beaten to a pulp and left for dead, but neither the assault nor the subsequent amputations broke his resolve to denounce oppression in India’s hinterlands.

“We as the proletariat want the same rights as the rich, a life of respect and equality,” he told AFP during an interview at his home, a humble brick building with mud floors..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110223com5.html

Looking for heroes SHE SAYS Dinah S. Ventura 02/23/2011

Looking for heroes

SHE SAYS
Dinah S. Ventura
02/23/2011
Our “Edsa” experiences, in 1986 and 2001, ushered in leaders that gave us either grief or glory in the last 25 years.

First among them was the former President Cory Aquino, whose only son, Benigno III, now sits in Malacañang.

President Noynoy, throughout his political life, has enjoyed the same positive vibe from the general public as his mother. Cory, in her own way, made the most of this popularity during her time, but more so beyond. Although the Cory years were marked with trials and disappointments, the greatest triumph of her time was the air of renewed hope that motivated Filipinos and made them appreciate true democracy. Cory came to symbolize hope because of all this, no matter how history now reflects on the details of her leadership..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110223com7.html

What makes a leader HE SAYS Aldrin Cardon 02/23/2011

What makes a leader

HE SAYS
Aldrin Cardon
02/23/2011
Two President Aquinos.
Twenty-five years after the first Edsa, the country has a second Aquino in Malacañang in President Simeon Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino, but one is who is turning out to be a far cry from the first, the late President Cory Aquino, who is the more popular and well-loved of the two.

But alas, instead of charting his own name in our history, Noynoy Aquino seems bent on just imitating his late mother, but with less effect as Cory had lived in a different time and situation, while Noynoy comes only to reap the fruits left by Cory, and long after everything was laid for them by his father, the martyred Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr.

Not a few people close to Noynoy believe the presidency is a fate bestowed upon Noynoy by history, some still believe this was handed down by a higher being, but that is going too far. Yet there’s no reason to contradict their claims, only that some of them disagree on the prospect Noynoy could become the best leader to come out of the family. They should have known better.

Twenty-five years ago, days after Marcos was declared winner of the 1986 presidential elections, Cory had initiated a civil disobedience campaign with big results..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110223com6.html

Mar fails at troubleshoot job By Aytch S. de la Cruz 02/23/2011

TAIWAN’S MA FURIOUS, THREATENS RP LABOR FREEZE

Mar fails at troubleshoot job

By Aytch S. de la Cruz 02/23/2011

President Aquino’s chief troubleshooter and special envoy defeated vice presidential candidate Manuel “Mar” Roxas has angered Taiwan’s President, officials and the Taiwanese for his and Aquino’s refusal to apologize to the Taiwan government for deporting the 14 Taiwanese to China and threatened to freeze the hiring of Philippine workers.

“Taiwan’s government and people are strongly angered,” President Ma Ying-jeou said through an interpreter while meeting in Taipei with Roxas, an unofficial envoy of Aquino.

Ma reiterated Taiwan’s demand that the Philippines “take responsibility for its mistakes” and apologize, local television footage showed.

Roxas, who arrived on Monday in an attempt to cool the row, has so far only said “we deeply regret” this incident during talks with Ma and Taiwan’s foreign minister Timothy Yang, according to the foreign ministry..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110223hed1.html

House toes Noy line, defies SC; impeach Merci on By Gerry Baldo and Charlie V. Manalo 02/23/2011

House toes Noy line, defies SC; impeach Merci on

By Gerry Baldo and Charlie V. Manalo 02/23/2011

Calls from Malacañang were allegedly made to Speaker Feliciano Belmonte for the justice committee to go ahead with the impeachment proceedings against Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez, despite an earlier call from the Supreme Court for the House to wait for the final decision of the SC, with a motion for reconsideration (MR) yet to be filed by the Ombudsman.

Yesterday, the Speaker changed his tune, reportedly after President Aquino allegedly called Belmonte and other Palace allies to a meeting to hatch an impeachment strategy against the Ombudsman, with the House committee on justice voting to proceed with the impeachment hearing while disregarding the possible outcome of the MR the Ombudsman is expected to file before the high court.

Voting 21-5, the panel, headed by Iloilo Rep. Niel Tupas, approved yesterday to proceed with the impeachment proceedings vowing to resolve the case as soon as possible.

The panel decision was a complete turnaround from Belmonte’s earlier statement that the House would wait for the outcome of Gutierrez’s MR before the SC questioning the earlier decision of the House panel to hear two different impeachment complaints lodged against her. Gutierrez has until March 2, 2011 to file her MR..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110223hed2.html

Libyan envoys quit over violence; RP rejects OFWs’ mass evacuation By Michaela P. del Callar 02/23/2011

Libyan envoys quit over violence; RP rejects OFWs’ mass evacuation

By Michaela P. del Callar 02/23/2011

Violence and the reported massacre of Libyan anti-government demonstrators have triggered a virtual mass resignation of the Libyan ambassadors who cut their ties with Libyan strongman Moammar Gadhafi, but despite the violence and the deaths of civilians, the Aquino government merely offered “voluntary repatriation” for 30,000 Filipino workers in that country, even as it raised the alert to level 3.

Libya’s embassy in Australia reportedly cut its ties with strongman Gadhafi on Tuesday, joining a rash of defections around the world after his regime launched a bloody crackdown on protesters.

Embassy officials could not be contacted but the mission’s cultural counsellor Omran Zwed told the Australian newspaper: “We represent the Libyan people and no longer the Libyan regime.”

Libya’s ambassador to India told Agence France Presse Tuesday he had quit because of “massive” and “unacceptable” violence against civilians, while embassy staff in Malaysia assailed the “massacre” of anti-government protesters..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110223hed3.html

Romulo confirms leaving DFA; UN posting probable 02/23/2011

Romulo confirms leaving DFA; UN posting probable

02/23/2011
Outgoing Foreign Affairs Chief Alberto Romulo broke his silence yesterday and confirmed that he is stepping down as Foreign Affairs Secretary to give way to his successor, businessman and former envoy to Washington Albert del Rosario.

The Tribune earlier reported that the turn-over rites will be held on Wednesday. Romulo confirmed this to reporters.

“The turnover is scheduled tomorrow at 6 p.m.,” Romulo said but sources said the outgoing Secretary is co-hosting a lunch with Del Rosario at a hotel in Manila for Department of Foreign Affairs Undersecretaries and Assistant Secretaries.

At the lunch, Romulo will introduce the department’s senior officials to Del Rosario..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110223hed4.html

Gov’t bares prisoner swap bid with China By Michaela P. del Callar 02/23/2011

Gov’t bares prisoner swap bid with China

By Michaela P. del Callar 02/23/2011

The government is rushing to sign a transfer of sentenced persons agreements (TSPA) with China to repatriate three condemned Filipinos and 200 others in Chinese jails over drug trafficking in exchange for the release of Chinese in local jails for similar drug-related offenses.

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said it wants to finalize a prisoner swap agreement with China that would allow Filipinos jailed in that country on charges of drug trafficking to serve their sentences in the Philippines.

“We will do our best to conclude it at earliest time possible because it will not only benefit Filipinos but also Chinese in jail here,” Foreign Affairs spokesman Eduardo Malaya said.

The Philippines initiated talks for a bilateral Transfer of Sentenced Persons Agreements (TSPA) with China in
.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110223hed5.html

Tears, nightmares hound HK survivors over Manila ordeal 02/23/2011

Tears, nightmares hound HK survivors over Manila ordeal

02/23/2011
Amid tears, two survivors of the Manila hostage crisis that cost the lives of eight Hong Kong tourists recounted their ordeal in an inquest in the territory mostly blaming the Philippine government for not taking seriously the situation that ended with a disgruntled hostage taker police officer Rolando Mendoza opening up in a shooting spree.

Both recounted recurring nightmares about the incident.

The survivors similarly related that the gunman began his lethal killing spree after he saw police snipers and his police brother being accosted in a report he watched in a television on board the bus he commandeered.

Yik Siu-ling, 33, the last survivor to testify before the inquest and injured in her lower jaw and slurred when testifying before Coroner Michael Chan Pik-kiu, told the court someone passed a letter to Mendoza from a window beside the driver’s seat in the afternoon..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110223hed6.html

Querubin welcomes DND investigation in 2004 rigged polls By Mario J. Mallari 02/23/2011

Querubin welcomes DND investigation in 2004 rigged polls

By Mario J. Mallari 02/23/2011

Bemedalled former Marine Col. Ariel Querubin has welcomed the possible reinvestigation by the Department of National Defense (DND) of the alleged involvement of the military into the 2004 electoral fraud.

Querubin, one of the few living awardees of the highest military Medal for Valor, said the revisitation of the issue should take off to the full-disclosure of the Mayuga Report.

“That’s a welcome move but first they should bring out the Mayuga Report because some of those who reported to me their knowledge about election fraud have appeared and wavered because they were not under oath,” said Querubin.

The Mayuga Report was prepared by former Navy chief and then military Inspector General Vice Admiral Mateo Mayuga, who led the investigating committee that probed the alleged participation of some ranking officials of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) into the electoral fraud..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20110223nat3.html

Recto proposes additional years to be implemented in pre-school level By Angie M. Rosales 02/23/2011

Recto proposes additional years to be implemented in pre-school level

By Angie M. Rosales 02/23/2011
The Department of Education (DepEd) proposed “K plus 12” program, extending the students’ stay in high school by two more years was opposed yesterday by an administration senator during a hearing in the upper chamber.

Sen. Ralph Recto proposed that the additional school years be instead implemented in the pre-school or kindergarten level, rather than in the secondary education.

In the explanation given by DepEd officials to the six Senate committees hearing the proposal — education, finance, ways and means, women and family relations, trade and commerce and local government — that it will be a six-year secondary education program under the “K plus 12” scheme, with the junior and senior high school having three years each.

Recto said additional learning years should instead be pumped into the pre-school level to ensure that students are better prepared in starting their formal schooling..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20110223nat5.html

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