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Giving the US-backed MILF its substate EDITORIAL 08/31/2011

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Giving the US-backed MILF its substate

EDITORIAL
Click to enlarge
08/31/2011
With the Moro Islamic Liberation Front panelist talking, certain points during that “secret” meeting in Japan between Noynoy and MILF chieftain appear to bear out suspicions that Noynoy did promise the MILF certain things, including a substate for the BangsaMoro government, and a lot more besides, since some Cabinet officials representing the very departments that are excluded in the substate version of the MILF were also present.

The MILF was pretty upbeat after the secret talks with Noynoy, and its leaders were already talking as though the substate proposal they spoke about was a done deal, with merely a final accord making it official.

Obviously too, with the Budget Secretary Butch Abad also in the picture, money — and a lot of it — not just a measly P5 million to keep the MILF happy — was part of the secret meeting topic.

The talk apparently had already revolved around a substate, with a BangsaMoro authority granted a lot of state power and with the government of the Philippines having the authority over national defense, foreign relations, currency and postal services and would still be exercised by the central government..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110831com1.html

The power of money — and control FRONTLINE Ninez Cacho-Olivares 08/31/2011

The power of money — and control

FRONTLINE
Ninez Cacho-Olivares
08/31/2011
Noynoy and his budget boy show clear signs of making the Supreme Court (SC) toe the Malacañang line.

It has become much too clear that Noynoy wants to control the high court, to the point of having slashed the SC’s budget last year, and again this year, with Malacañang insisting that P1.25 billion in the judiciary’s budget should be under the executive department’s control, using the mantra of “judicial transparency.”

The problem is that under the Constitution, the judiiciary is protected by its fiscal autonomy, besides which, Noynoy and his administration can hardly claim, in all honesty, that they are transparent, especially about the funds. To this day, Noynoy has not accounted for the expenses made on his 2011 P400-million intelligence funds, as well as his expenses in the matter of the funds in his presidential social fund (PSF). No project has been announced thus far that he had assisted though his PSF.

Today, despite the utter lack of Palace transparency, Noynoy even has added another P200 million to his inteligence fund, for a 2012 total of P600 million in intelligence fund alone, even if his office is strictly not into intelligence gathering, which is the reason he cut off intel funds in other departments..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110831com2.html

Tough times ahead for Japan’s Noda, say analysts ANALYSIS 08/31/2011

Tough times ahead for Japan’s Noda, say analysts

ANALYSIS

08/31/2011
TOKYO — New Premier Yoshihiko Noda faces a struggle to stop Japan’s revolving door of political leadership, analysts warn, jeopardizing his chances of tackling the world’s biggest debt burden.

The hawkish finance minister replaced Naoto Kan as prime minister Tuesday to become the nation’s sixth new leader in five years after the ruling Democratic Party of Japan chose him as its new president over rival Banri Kaieda.

Noda, who likens himself to a marine bottom-feeder rather than a glittering goldfish, has stressed his credentials as a responsible, moderate and middle-of-the road leader at a time of national crisis.

But there is skepticism that will be enough, with his immediate priority the passing of a third budget to pay for post-March 11 quake reconstruction as he looks to revive an economy that has contracted for three straight quarters..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110831com3.html

Valueless C.R.O.S.S.R.O.A.D.S Jonathan De la Cruz 08/31/2011

Valueless

C.R.O.S.S.R.O.A.D.S
Jonathan De la Cruz
08/31/2011
Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago, she of the acerbic tongue and matchless wit, is at her fightingest mode all over again. She has scored her colleagues’ propensity to undertake “inquiries-in-aid-of-legislation” instead of buckling to actual legislative work and policy making. She admitted that most of the time the probes do not really serve their purpose and, worse, turn senators into two bit investigators and prosecutors. Herself a darling of media, she decried the fact that the medium has actually turned legislators into actors doing everything possible to get into the news and bring attention to themselves rather than the topic at hand. She called the hearings which are usually covered live on TV and radio as variously “inquiries-in-aid-of-election” or “inquiries-in-aid-of-public adulation.”

Said Santiago: “These inquiries-in-aid-of-legislation or public hearings or public investigation of the Senate are actually useless. It is valueless because the most that we can do is refer the case to the Ombudsman or the Department of Justice for them to study if there is probable cause to conduct preliminary investigation. If we have the power of preliminary investigation that would justify the time spent in these proceedings, we become investigators and fiscals. But that is not the case..... MORE
SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110831com4.html

Cambodia’s activist monk fights on despite threats focus 08/31/2011

Cambodia’s activist monk fights on despite threats

focus

08/31/2011
PHNOM PENH — His saffron robe a rare beacon among protesters, Cambodia’s most outspoken monk has been banned from temples and risked arrest for challenging rights abuses — but he vows not to be silenced.

“The more they threaten me, the more I stand up for our rights,” said the Venerable Loun Sovath, also known as the “multimedia monk” for filming forced evictions and distributing the footage.

In a country where Buddhist monks are hugely respected but rarely seen standing shoulder to shoulder with those fighting abuses, his peaceful activism has attracted praise from rights groups — and condemnation from authorities.

“Seeing a monk among the crowd lifts the spirits of people defending their human rights,” the bespectacled holy man told AFP during a recent interview in the capital, where he joined a rally against deforestation..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110831com5.html

US opposes VFA review —Wikileaks By Michaela P. del Callar 08/31/2011

US opposes VFA review —Wikileaks

By Michaela P. del Callar 08/31/2011

The United States had opposed the review of the controversial Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) with the Philippines even as the Philippine government pointed out “defects” in the defense accord, a US Embassy cable released by online whistleblower WikiLeaks said.

Former Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Asian and Pacific Affairs Richard Lawless, who visited in Manila in 2007, told Department of Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Rafael Seguis in a meeting that there is no need to review the agreement since it is working well for both countries.

Manila is spe-cifically against a vague provision granting the US primary custody of American military personnel ac-cused of breaking Philippine laws. Surrendering erring American troops to Philippine authorities would mean they would have to be incarcerated in a local jail, touted as one of the worst prison cells in the world, and join other Filipino inmates, a move the US government strongly objects.

This situation was put to a test when Lance Cpl. Daniel Smith was accused of raping a Filipina off military hours..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110831hed2.html

Bad performance did Alvarez in — Palace By Virgilio J. Bugaoisan 08/31/2011

NOY REMAINS TIGHT LIPPED ON REPLACEMENT

Bad performance did Alvarez in — Palace

By Virgilio J. Bugaoisan 08/31/2011

Bad performance did in former Customs Commissioner Angelito Alvarez, and not his claim of bad publicity which Alvarez insinuated to have been orchestrated by smuggling syndicates, the Palace stated yesterday.

Bad publicity was not the reason for President Aquino’s decision to sack Alvarez, deputy presidential spokesman Abigail Valte said yesterday.

But even as Aquino declared that he had already given the walking papers to Alvarez, Valte claimed Aquino’s aides are being kept in the dark on his replacement.

She is also uncertain when the actual turnover would take place..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110831hed1.html

RP backs new Libyan government By Michaela P. del Callar 08/31/2011

RP backs new Libyan government

By Michaela P. del Callar 08/31/2011

The Philippines yesterday finally withdrew its support for Libyan strongman Moammer Kadhafi and announced that it is officially recognizing the opposition-backed National Transitional Council (NTC) as the legitimate government in Libya.

As members of the Kadhafi family departed Libya and sought refuge in neighboring Algeria, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) referred to the NTC as the “legitimate representative of the Libyan people” and urged it to “lead the country toward peace and security.”

“The Philippines recognizes the National Transitional Council as the legitimate representative of the Libyan people during this period of transition in the country,” a DFA statement said.

Manila’s support for the NTC indicates the country’s new policy toward Libya after it had hesitated in the past to immediately shift sides as Kadhafi’s grip on power waned to safeguard hundreds of Filipino workers from possible retaliatory attacks..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20110831nat2.html

Solon urges GSIS to restore pension of Napocor retirees 08/31/2011

Solon urges GSIS to restore pension of Napocor retirees

08/31/2011
Newly installed Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III yesterday asked the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) to restore the monthly pensions of nearly 9,000 National Power Corp. (Napocor) retirees that the state-run pension agency stopped last April, allegedly in compliance with a Supreme Court ruling.

Pimentel urged GSIS chairman Daniel Lacson and GSIS president and general manager Robert Vergara to liberally interpret the laws in favor of its members or beneficiaries.

“If, under our Labor Laws, a fair day’s pays for a pair day’s work is a long accepted doctrine, the same should equally apply to retirees who look at their retirement benefits as a financial refuge in their old age,” Pimentel said.

Pimentel said Napocor retirees have made invaluable contribution to the development of the Philippine electric power industry and deserve due recognition for services rendered..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20110831nat5.html

Lawmaker mulls people’s initiative vs oil deregulation law 08/31/2011

Lawmaker mulls people’s initiative vs oil deregulation law

08/31/2011
Bayan Muna Rep. Neri Colmenares yesterday called on consumers to launch a people’s initiative to repeal the Oil Deregulation Law considering that it has caused so much price increases in oil products and has not served its purpose of lowering its cost.

This will be a parallel initiative to Congressional action on bills filed by Bayan Muna and the progressive block in Congress to repeal the Oil Deregulation Law.

“It is about time the people take “the law into their own hands,” said Colmenares. “Actions within and outside Congress could help push the eventual repeal of the law that has allowed spiralling fuel prices in the country.”

Colmenares said that “an “Initiative” is the power of the people to propose amendments to the Constitution or to propose and enact legislations through a petition of 10% of the registered voters.”.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/metro/20110831met3.html

PRC scraps mass oath-taking of newly registered nurses 08/31/2011

PRC scraps mass oath-taking of newly registered nurses

08/31/2011
Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz yesterday said the Board of Nursing (BoN) of the Professional Regulation Commission has scrapped the usual mass oath-taking of newly registered nurses beginning with the successful examinees of the July 2011 Nursing Licensure Examination.

Baldoz said the move is in response to the Aquino government’s call for prudent budget management.

She said Commission ChairmanTeresita Manzala reported to her that the BoN has decided to do away with the mass oath-taking of successful examinees, citing the current socio-economic condition being experienced by Filipino families, especially the income class where majority of the nurses belong.

“While the oath-taking is a requirement of law, the Board [of Nursing] decided to simplify it to save on costs and other expenses relevant to the holding of the traditional mass oath-taking. The oath-taking ceremony, however, will still be undertaken either individually or by groups upon their registration for nurse licenses with the PRC,” Manzala explained..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/metro/20110831met7.html

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