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The Daily Tribune

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The Philippines Matrix Project

Noynoy, psych patient in US — civil society group By Angie M. Rosales 04/30/2010

Friday, April 30, 2010

Aquino admits past depression, denies treatment

Noynoy, psych patient in US — civil society group

By Angie M. Rosales

The claimed “fake” psychiatric test and results purportedly authored by Jesuit priest Jaime Bulatao and bared by former National Power Corp. president, Guido Delgado, as well as the new charges from a civil society group yesterday that Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino underwent psychiatric treatment in Boston, USA under the care of one Dr. Steven Aguilar, may be true, after all.

The Liberal Party standard bearer yesterday while denying having undergone professional help, nevertheless admitted that he had suffered from depressions in the past.

He also admitted that he has also thought of taking revenge on those who have made life difficult for his parents and his family.

“Sure, I would be lying if I told you I wouldn’t (want to take my revenge). All this (baring of his alleged mental disorder) is an attempt to get me mad.”.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100430hed1.html

Erap-Binay moves closer to May 10 ‘poll shocker’ By Gerry Baldo 04/30/2010

Erap-Binay moves closer to May 10 ‘poll shocker’

By Gerry Baldo

Almost a week before the national elections, the Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP) tandem of former President Joseph Estrada and Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay is surging to within striking distance of the leading presidential and vice presidential candidates to show their opponents they are a force to reckon with. 

Estrada said the PMP strategy of bringing the campaign straight to the people was right on track as the latest Pulse Asia ratings showed him at a tie with erstwhile second placer Nacionalista Party (NP) bet Sen. Manuel Villar Jr. while Binay shot past Villar’s running mate, Sen. Loren Legarda to land in the second place following Liberal Party bet Sen. Manuel Roxas II.

“As I told you, I will give them the surprise of their lives,” Estrada said in a telephone interview. He earlier said that his opponents would be in for a big surprise come election day.

Estrada, apparently elated at the recent developments, also said that the fight now would be between him and Aquino and between Binay and Roxas.

“It’s no longer between Mar and Loren (LP vice presidential bet Sen. Manuel Roxas II versus NP vice presidential candidate Sen. Loren Legarda). It’s already Mar versus (PMP bet Makati) Mayor (Jejomar) Binay,” Estrada said.
Estrada’s camp said they will focus the remaining days of the campaign period to prove that the ousted leader is a better choice than survey leader Sen. Noynoy Aquino, Estrada’s spokesman said on Thursday..... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100430hed2.html

Comelec junks parallel manual count petition By Marie Surbano and Aytch S. de la Cruz 04/30/2010

Comelec junks parallel manual count petition

By Marie Surbano and Aytch S. de la Cruz

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has rejected the proposal of various groups to conduct a parallel manual count as backup to automated counting of votes in the May 10 polls, saying the process is too dangerous that the electoral body’s “credibility will once again be questioned if it will allow it.”

In a seven-page resolution, the Comelec en banc yesterday noted that “allowing the conduct of a manual audit is vulnerable to possible styles” of irregularities.
“The scrapping of the electronic count and canvass in favor of the hand count and manual canvassing will likely open up the possibility of the return of old modes of cheating — particularly ‘dagdag-bawas’ (vote padding-shaving) and the resurrection of sleeping Garcis. With the certificate of canvass prepared manually, the old ills of error and fabricated CoCs will resurface, leading ironically to a less credible election result,” the resolution said.
The Comelec is referring to the proposal which will count all the votes cast, and if the figures of the precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines and the manual count will not tally, the machine count will be excluded.
“But the commission also cannot accept that the mere existence of disagreement between the hand count and the electronic count should automatically be interpreted as proof of the inaccuracy of the electronic count. The beneficiality of a parallel manual count, therefore, is limited only to proving the existence of a discrepancy; it does not, by itself, prove the invalidity of the electronic count,” the poll body explained.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100430hed4.html

Petition on interim pact with MILF premature — GRP panel By Michaela P. del Callar 04/30/2010

Petition on interim pact with MILF premature — GRP panel

By Michaela P. del Callar


The head of the government peace negotiating panel with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) has branded as “premature” the petition filed by North Cotabato officials before the Supreme Court (SC) seeking to prevent the Arroyo administration from signing an interim peace agreement with the Muslim separatist group.

Government peace chief negotiator Rafael Seguis told reporters that the petition that local government officials of the southern province has filed before the high court is premature since an interim agreement has yet to be forged between the two parties as talks over the matter are still on-going.

“In fact, as of this date, the Philippine government panel and the MILF have not even agreed on a negotiating draft,” Seguis said. 

He, though, said he expects that it is just a matter of time before the government and the Muslim rebel group forges such an agreement.

“At the least, there is need to preserve the gains of 13 years of negotiations and assure that the peace process will continue with a clear roadmap,” Seguis said in defending the government’s push for an interim deal to be sealed with the MILF assuring that the rebel group will continue negotiating peace with the next administration after the Arroyo government bows out on June 30.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

  URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20100430nat1.html

Yellow politics of coercion EDITORIAL 04/30/2010

Yellow politics of coercion

Click to enlarge

Presidential aspirant Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino seems single-minded about being the next president of the land and he will not accept anything otherwise.
The problem with such an attitude, if Noynoy really believes what he is saying, is that it brings Filipinos potentially on the road to a more chaotic administration than the nine years of Gloria.

Noynoy’s predisposition to use coercion in fulfilling his desires is worse than the transactional politics of the discredited Gloria, or for that matter, that of her candidate Manuel Villar Jr.

Gloria’s brand of politics uses bribery to obtain her wishes but Noynoy’s politics would be “You’re either yellow or you’re an enemy” politics. 

Noynoy made a mockery of Filipinos the other day when he told foreign media that the only way he will lose in the coming elections on May 10 is that he will be cheated out of his victory. He stressed he will lead a civil disobedience campaign leading to a people power revolt never seen before as it will even be worse than the political unrest in Bangkok — if he does not win the presidency.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100430com1.html

No count but more trouble from yellows FRONTLINE Ninez Cacho-Olivares 04/30/2010

No count but more trouble from yellows

Ninez Cacho-Olivares

It was pretty evident that the poll body would reject the parallel manual count the business groups sought earlier.

Truth is, the call came a bit too late for the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to approve the idea of a parallel manual count.

Still, it must also be stated that the Comelec has hardly come clean with the people via the Congress, and has in fact, reneged on its pledges to the congressional oversight committee to prepare for manual polls and count, in the event of a failure of automated polls.

The date agreed upon between the Comelec and the panel was that the poll body would prepare for such eventuality by March — or some two months ago. And it didn’t, claiming instead that there can be no failure of the automated polls..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100430com2.html

Thailand’s orange-robed monks reveal shades of red focus 04/30/2010

Thailand’s orange-robed monks reveal shades of red



BANGKOK — Dozens of Thai monks, clad in vivid orange robes, untangle their hands bound with sacred Buddhist thread after performing a chanting ceremony to protect the anti-government “Red Shirts.”

Since mass protests began in Bangkok in mid-March demanding snap elections, the red-dressed crowds have been speckled with the monks’ distinctive attire despite a long-held monastic custom of keeping out of Thai politics.
“We have been staying with the people from the beginning, more than one month already,” said a 70-year-old monk, Doctor Tuanchai.

“We sleep on the roadside. It’s a very difficult life but we decided to do it for peace and harmony and love for the Thai people.”

He said the monks were “neutral” despite their presence at the rally, though his comments revealed a leaning toward the mainly rural poor and urban working-class Reds, who say they are fighting the Thai elites.

“I hope they will gain victory soon because they ask for democracy and justice. I hope all monks and all Thai people in general, the majority will sympathise with the Red Shirts,” Tuanchai said.... MORE 

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100430com3.html

An honor NO HOLDS BARRED Armida Siguion-Reyna 04/30/2010

An honor

Armida Siguion-Reyna

By the time you read this, I will have been awarded the Natatanging Gawad for Lifetime Achievement, by the Manunuri ng Pelikulang Pilipino, at the 33rd Gawad Urian at the Sine Adarna (UP Film Center), at the University of the Philippines.
Soon after I had been informed of the honor, I decided I wasn’t going to come up with a pre-written thank you speech and that I was going to keep it short and simple. I promised not to be emotional, but even as I do this in advance, I know the opposite is going to happen. Iyakin ako.
After all, I joined a roster that includes filmmakers Gerry de Leon, Bert Avellana, Manuel Conde, Eddie Romero, Susana de Guzman, Fernando Poe Jr., Peque Gallaga and Kidlat Tahimik; producers Manuel de Leon, Luis Nolasco and Marichu Maceda; cinematographers Mike Accion and Felipe Sacdalan; musicians Levi Celerio and Tito Arevalo; actors Anita Linda, Leopoldo Salcedo, Pancho Magalona, Rosa Rosal, Nida Blanca, Mona Lisa, Dolphy — the list is long and illustrious.
Fernando Poe Jr. was recognized as actor, writer, director and producer. Eddie Romero, as writer and producer. Rosa Rosal as actor and also for her work as pillar of the Philippine National Red Cross.
According to the Manunuri Web site, I’m cited as an actor for my performances in Tahan na Empoy, Tahan, Inagaw Mo ang Lahat sa Akin, and Sa Pagitan ng Dalawang Langit. As a producer, for “trailblazing productions that sought to break away from the star system so prevalent in the Philippine movie studio system through an approach that is creative, collaborative and professional,” and for producing “quality movies that are innovative and well-made,” seeking “to carve a niche for Filipino cinema world cinema.” Finally, as head of the Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB), for having been “a brave and bold state official who battled censorship and prior restraint in order to advance the constitutional rights to creativity and freedom of artists.”... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100430com4.html


Yellow arrogance: Erap’s redemption DIE HARD III Herman Tiu Laurel 04/30/2010

Yellow arrogance: Erap’s redemption

Herman Tiu Laurel

The yellow army had long declared itself victorious even as election day was still months away. Government directorships were offered left and right to any prospective recruits to entice them into their fold. Now, with 10 days to go before crunch time, the yellows declare that only cheating can deny them of victory. They promise “people power” and vow to do better than the Thai “Red Shirts” in their rampage.

“Arrogance diminishes wisdom,” says an Arabian proverb. Evidently, arrogance has been built into the yellow movement from its inception. From the hyperbolic image created for Ninoy and Cory, to the 1986 Edsa revolt, to the recent “new Aquino” spiel of Time magazine, such arrogant displays have been cultivated by the US and local oligarchy’s media.

Why, this “new Aquino” was even in talks with military elements, purportedly for a people power redux. But this arrogance, clashing with Arroyo’s hubris, can only spell victory for the Filipino people who are solidly behind the redeemed Erap Estrada.

The surveys of SWS, Pulse Asia and Nielsen have served as the basis for the yellows’ presumption of victory. But as I tell them time and again, these are merely the usual suspects in the manipulation of Philippines elections — in cahoots with Namfrel.

Recall all the heads of Namfrel, from the late retired colonel of the USAFFE Jaime Ferrer, described in the book Policing America’s Empire: The US, the Philippines and the Rise of the Surveillance State, to the present one, one can easily see US and Big Business links. Cory Aquino’s Interior Secretary Jaime Ferrer, for one, was said to have “used CIA funds to organize election monitors in the 1950s and was now promoting vigilantes…” US wheat flour behest importer Joe Concepcion and today’s Hank Greenberg-AIG man Jose Cuisia also figure as this supposed election watchdog’s leaders.

And as the US has lost Ukraine to Russia the past month, it definitely wants to ensure that its good ‘ole Philippine puppy remains firmly on its lap.

Members of the yellow army act as if they are now in Malacañang — already breathing its air and banquets, and feeling the energy of power in their sinews, with their appointments and contracts just waiting for the ink to dry. Even retired military fogies like Gen. Ramon Montaño are salivating for a comeback — hopefully not in some shady capers he and other FVR boys were rumored to have dabbled in during Ramos’ time.

Perhaps, because of the surveys and the US’ say-so, they cannot imagine not winning this electoral contest since they think that they have already hyped up an imagined victory to con a manipulable crowd. What they cannot see, however, is that their own kind, Gloria Arroyo, is much better prepared and has readied her foxholes — in Congress, the military, police, and elsewhere.

Still, both the yellows and Gloria forget one thing: By their arrogance they shall fall. They forget the masa who have repeatedly been victimized through 25 years of their lies and oppression. Even if the oligarchs’ Edsa I and II mainstream media try to becloud this issue, the masa simply cannot forget this.

In the midst of the supercilious air of one yellow stalwart I came across recently, I explained the imminent upset of the expectations of both the yellows and the GMA regime: The consolidation of the masa vote. I mentioned the El Shaddai mass base which gave an 80-percent viva voce that downed the hopes for a Villar endorsement while the Iglesia ni Cristo has remained sphinx-like in its silence which may spring the final upset.
This yellow stalwart stymied for a response then countered, “The Iglesia ni Cristo always bets on the winner.” But this yellow mascot forgets how tough the INC has shown itself through history — by standing up to Marcos when martial law was imposed; by opposing the 1986 “people power” and continuing its defiance of Cory Aquino throughout that regime’s life; and by massing in the hundreds of thousands at Edsa III even after the yellows already grabbed power and sent APCs to its radio and TV station to stop its broadcast of anti-Edsa II information.
Moreover, this yellow stalwart forgets that Ninoy Aquino had killed INC farm leaders and forced whole INC communities into exodus out of Tarlac to Nueva Ecija, and that the yellow Cardinal Sin and his minions consistently oppressed the INC.
The INC could let all these things pass for the good of its institution, but will that be its view of this new yellow peril? Like everybody else, I’m sure the Iglesia is also squirming at the display of arrogance and gall of the yellows, through these threats and saber-rattling. Add to this the condescending view of the yellows on the INC, portraying them as sycophantic, opportunist and unprincipled — which certainly cannot escape the attention of the religious movement’s leaders.

The masa and their representative institutions should take heed from Mark Twain who said that “The offspring of riches: Pride, vanity, ostentation, arrogance, tyranny.” The consolidation of the institutional masa vote through the various religious and popular movements is anywhere between four to seven million votes. Nobody in his right mind can ever fail to see this as the truest swing or upset “redemption” vote.

(Tune in to 1098AM, Sulo ng Pilipino, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.; Global News Network, Destiny Cable Channel 21, Talk News TV, Tuesday, 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. on “The Politic Upset Potential” with Tony Gat et al.; also visit http://hermantiulaurel.blogspot.com)

(Reprinted with permission from Mr. Herman Tiu-Laurel)

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100430com5.html

Surgeon plans more live-donor liver transplants in Asia FEATURE 04/30/2010

Surgeon plans more live-donor liver transplants in Asia



SINGAPORE — From ailing Middle East royalty arriving in private jets to desperate charity cases, Dr. Tan Kai Chah has seen them all in his liver disease center in Singapore.

But the Malaysian doctor, one of Asia’s top liver surgeons, has a more lofty mission: make transplants and treatment more accessible to patients now that the organs can be sourced from living donors, not just cadavers.
Liver disease is common in Asia due to poor hygiene practices and dietary habits and many patients end up dying because of sky-high medical costs, inadequate facilities and a small donor pool, experts say.

In Southeast Asia, about six to eight percent of the population suffer from hepatitis B, said Tan, lead surgeon and executive chairman of the Asian Centre for Liver Diseases and Transplantation.

“In some parts of Asia such as China’s Pearl River Delta (and) north Vietnam... it can affect up to about 12 percent of the population,” Tan, 57, said in an interview with AFP.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100430com6.html

Bali’s beach boys reject gigolo slur FEATURE 04/30/2010

Bali’s beach boys reject gigolo slur



KUTA — Fun-loving local beach boys are as much a fixture and, for some women, an attraction of Bali as the sun and surf, but all that could be about to change thanks to a controversial new film.
The documentary, Cowboys in Paradise by Singapore-based writer and director Amit Virmani, sparked panic among Bali’s tourism officials when it was released at a film festival in South Korea earlier this month.

Its candid interviews with the local men who flirt with and seduce foreign tourists has severely tarnished the resort island’s image, officials say.

“Certainly it’s worrying. We’ll take action so the image of Bali as a spiritual island isn’t tainted,” Bali Gov. Made Mangku Pastika told reporters.

Police have rounded up almost 30 of the so-called beach “cowboys” in a bid to “clean up the beach of prostitution,” Bali police spokesman Gede Sugianyar said.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100430com7.html

Erap to Noynoy: Concede, when I win polls By Gerry Baldo 04/29/2010

Thursday, April 29, 2010

As LP bet threatens people power revolt if he loses

Erap to Noynoy: Concede, when I win polls

By Gerry Baldo

Following the Liberal Party standard bearer’s premature claim of having already won the presidency despite the fact that elections will still be held in some two weeks, Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP) presidential candidate former President Joseph Estrada yesterday said that Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino, the LP bet, should immediately concede his loss in the polls should he (Estrada) win the presidency.
Estrada was reacting to a statement made by Aquino in a Bloomberg interview that he must have been cheated if he does not win the presidency in the May 10 polls, saying that “If someone else wins, such as when I win the presidential
elections, he (Noynoy) should then concede defeat, because if I win the elections, there won’t be any cheating because I don’t know how to cheat.”
Estrada, who had always been circumspect in attacking his opponents, said that he respects the opinion of Aquino even as he reiterated that his opponents could be in for a big surprise come Election Day.
He said that almost 80 percent of the voters are poor and that many remain undecided to this day..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100429hed1.html

No ‘Garci’ boys in May 10 polls, vows Comelec chief By Marie Surbano 04/29/2010

No ‘Garci’ boys in May 10 polls, vows Comelec chief

By Marie Surbano

Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Jose Melo has assured that the remaining members of the “Garci” boys would find it difficult to operate this time with the automated polls.

“There may be sleeping ‘Garcis’ here if we (conduct) manual (elections). The old ills of the manual system will be revived. There may be ‘Garcis’ sleeping here but with the automation, they’ll no longer
wake up,” Melo yesterday said.

According to the poll chief, apart from stoppoing the Garci boys from their operations, the automated polls will also prevent “dagdag-bawas” (vote shaving, vote padding) since the election results would be transmitted automatically from the polling precincts to the canvassing centers and eventually to the Comelec main office and to Congress which would convene as the National Board of Canvassers.

Melo issued this reaction following reports posted at the abs-cbnNews.com/Newsbreak that “Garci” boys are still well-entrenched at the Comelec.

Garci refers to controversial former Comelec Commissioner Virgilio Garcillano who was reportedly part of an operation that rigged the results of the 2004 elections to favor President Arroyo.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100429hed3.html

Enrile exposes presence in Cagayan of armed men in military uniform 04/29/2010

Enrile exposes presence in Cagayan of armed men in military uniform


Armed men, wearing marines and army uniform, are roaming and intimidating candidates of Team Cagayan in the 1st, 2nd and 3rd districts of Cagayan, a detailed report reaching the office of Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and his son Jack Enrile revealed yesterday.

Team Cagayan, a coalition of various political parties organized to unify Cagayan by Jack Enrile, running practically unopposed in the 1st congressional district, is pitted against the group of Rep. Manuel Mamba, who is running for governor of the province against incumbent Gov. Alvaro Antonio.

Antonio and his running mate Vice Gov. Leonides “Odi” Fausto are with Enrile’s group together with 24 of the 29 Cagayan mayors and the three congressional candidates: Enrile, 2nd district reelectionists Enciong Vargas and Randy Ting, son of Tuguegarao Mayor Delfin Ting, running in the 3rd district against Manuel Mamba’s younger brother William.

The report included names and military background of the armed men, who funded, recruited and procured high-powered arms and fast vehicles for them.

The report also mentioned, apart from several politicians, a wealthy businessman, an active PNP general assigned to Camp Crame and a retired Marine general as deeply involved in the plan to terrorize Cagayan and erase the Enriles and their allies from the political scene.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20100429nat2.html

GSIS releases P49.84 billion in loans in 2009 04/29/2010

GSIS releases P49.84 billion in loans in 2009


The Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) reported an overwhelming P49.84 billion loan disbursement in 2009, an amount filed through its state-of-the-art GSIS Wireless Automated Processing System (G-W@PS) kiosk. This was achieved despite the slowdown in its operations brought about by the defective IBM-DB2 database system.

Data from the Information Technology Services Group of the GSIS showed a little over a million loan applications were filed online last year through the G-W@PS kiosks deployed in all GSIS servicing offices and selected government agencies.

Of the total loan applications filed, the GSIS approved 878,469 for a total consideration of P49.84 billion.
The GSIS said it was able to process a huge bulk of loan applications filed through the G-W@PS kiosks because it has moved to a new and better system, which is Oracle.

Introduced in 2006, the G-W@PS is hailed as the first in the world. It was launched in fruition of the pension fund’s commitment to provide anytime, anywhere service.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20100429nat5.html

Curiouser and curiouser EDITORIAL 04/29/2010

Curiouser and curiouser

Click to enlarge

Media quickly reported that the psychological report on Liberal Party standard bearer Sen. Noynoy Aquino is a fake, following a purported denial by Jesuit priest Jaime Bulatao in the Ateneo Web site, alongside interviews with some officer from the Ateneo University’s Department of Psychology.

Is a denial proof that such documents are manufactured? If so, then a denial whether from officialdom or the courts of an accused, should then be taken as gospel truth and that would then be the end of the issue. Then too, does a psychologist deny or confirm whether he took such and such a case?

The psychological report said to have been done some 30-odd years ago on Noynoy may well be fake, but again, it may be for real. Still this is hardly the point, as what is extremely curious is, one, the quick denial from Bulatao, who is close to being a novenarian, stating that “it has come to my attention that an unverified psychiatric evaluation allegedly signed by me in 1979 about the mental condition of Sen. Benigno C. Aquino lll, is currently circulating in the news. I categorically deny having written that report.”... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100429com1.html

Something’s cooking in the yellow front FRONTLINE Ninez Cacho-Olivares 04/29/2010

Something’s cooking in the yellow front

Ninez Cacho-Olivares

Something is brewing among the elitista supporters of Noynoy Aquino and it spells trouble to be created during the polls.

Already, Noynoy has come out in an interview claiming victory — something that his mother, the late Corazon Aquino, also did to create the impression that she had won the count, but was being cheated by Ferdinand Marcos.

But what is the presumptuous Noynoy Aquino’s basis of claiming presidential victory, since the polls are still 12 days away? 

Evidently, Noynoy bases his victory in the surveys which show him at the top and with something like a double digit lead.

That’s really laughable for a presidential candidate to declare his electoral victory on the basis of the dubious surveys, since it is not the survey numbers that are counted on May 10.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100429com2.html

Stability still elusive in divided Ukraine 04/29/2010

Stability still elusive in divided Ukraine


KIEV — The punches traded in Ukraine’s parliament Tuesday show the country remains far from politically stable and a deal to prolong the stay of the Russian Black Sea Fleet has only exacerbated divisions.

Analysts said the decision by President Viktor Yanukovych to sign an agreement allowing the fleet to remain in Ukraine until at least 2042 has sharply polarized national opinion to a worrying degree.

“Yanukovych’s political stability ended the day when he signed the accord on the fleet,” said Igor Zhdanov, president of the Open Policy center in Kiev.

“This is only a beginning, but this beginning could end in a serious political cataclysm. A step in this direction has already been made,” the analyst said.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100429com3.html

Tongue-tied in QC BLURBAL THRUSTS Louie Logarta 04/29/2010

Tongue-tied in QC

Louie Logarta

Quezon City Vice Mayor Herbert “Bistek” Bautista, who is running for the office of mayor under the banner of the Liberal Party (LP) this May 10, appears so confident of victory that he has for the nth time snubbed an invitation to appear before the electorate in order to explain away damaging issues that have been brought to the public’s attention by his political opponents who in doing so are hoping to dampen his overrated popularity.
The most telling is this one regarding the plunder raps he’s facing before the Ombudsman for the merienda purchases of the Office of the Vice Mayor amounting to about P106 million (?!%&@ $#) dating back to more than a year ago which were allegedly done without the benefit of a public bidding, as per provisions of the Government Procurement Act or Republic Act (RA) 9184.
Bautista’s latest no-show was his refusal to appear before the candidates’ forum hosted by the influential Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) last week. This had come on the heels of similar invites issued to him by businessmen’s groups as well as the academe.
In contrast, former Malacañang chief-of-staff Mike Defensor, Bautista’s strongest opponent for the post soon to be vacated by Mayor Feliciano Belmonte, who is serving out his third and final term, has been appearing in public debates as often as possible (and he cannot seem to get his fill of them) and taking advantage of the opportunity to lash out at the tongue-less vice mayor for his alleged corruption.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100429com4.html

NP desperate SILVER LINING Dean Ernest Maceda 04/29/2010

NP desperate

Dean Ernest Maceda

In Karen Davila’s Headstart program over ANC, President Erap said that Manny Villar’s use of his mother Currita in a presscon was an act of desperation.

After denying that the Villar camp had released the first psychiatric report allegedly issued by Fr. Caluag, S.J. attesting to Noynoy’s severe mental depression, the NP the other day came out with psycho test II in a presscon by NP leader Guido Delgado, a former Napocor president and reportedly working with Ricky Razon on power projects.

This confirms Erap’s analysis that Villar is desperate.

It is obvious that the Erap-Enrile exposé on the Vista Land and Landscapes stock market exposé was a fatal blow to Villar’s chances. Previously, four big issues hit Villar lethally. 1) The C-5 conflict of interest issue supported by Sen. Joker Arroyo’s privilege speech as congressman; 2) The overspending of billions on TV/radio commercials and the buying of candidates; 3) The Villaroyo issue linking him to GMA; 4) The fake and false pretensions on being poor and pro-poor.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100429com5.html

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