CNN Philippines:
CHR challenges palace anew: Agree to independent probe on alleged EJKs

Twitter - cnnphilippines

24 minutes ago

View on Website

PXP Energy surges nearly 30% as investors bet on China deal
ABS-CBN - Business

37 minutes ago

It was all about energy at the Philippine Stock Exchange Monday with PXP Energy and energy development dominating trade.

View on Website

IS may have funded Marawi siege – Palace
The Manila Times Online

37 minutes ago

Malacañang is not discounting the possibility that international terror group Islamic State (IS) also funded the attack on Marawi City as part of “multiple streams of income.”

In a news conference, Palace spokesman Ernesto Abella said President Rodrigo Duterte’s so-called Lanao Del Sur (LDS) Drug Trade Linked Diagram underscored the ties that bound illegal drugs and criminal and terrorist activities in the country.

“Let’s put it this way, I suppose there are multiple streams of income coming in [to finance the Maute group],” Abella told reporters.

He also said the drug matrix only proved that local executives, drug syndicates, and terror groups were part of a “circuitous loop.”

“We should say not just drug money, it’s narco-politics. In other words, local politicians, apparently down to the local level, are all participating in abetting the drug trade which is closely related to – apparently, it’s a circuitous loop – government, drugs, [and]terror group,” Abella said.

On Friday, Duterte released the diagram containing the names of drug lords and politicians who allegedly funded the Marawi siege.

The President said the matrix was a result of intelligence work in the last three months, when government troops were able to gain access to Marawi.

The Palace official said Duterte had a “plan in mind” against drug suspects who helped finance the Marawi attack.

“We can all trust that the President will – not just the President but the whole force of government – will be exercised in order to make sure that his campaign promises regarding drugs and corruption and crime will be addressed,” he added.

Speaking to reporters in Davao City, Duterte claimed the purported IS emir in Southeast Asia, Isnilon Hapilon, and the Maute brothers who led the insurgency in Marawi City were far from “being the main protagonists.”
“On the list, it’s really those who are in the government,” the President said.

Duterte then claimed that slain Ozamiz City Mayor Reynaldo Parojinog was one of those who poured cash on the extremists that occupied Marawi.

Some local officials in Central Mindanao are also financing terrorists, he said, but did not elaborate.

The single-page matrix contained a column on each side. The left named “drug lords,” who included a number of incumbent local executives, the right named “drug dealers,” and the center contained circles within which were the names of “narco-politicians” and other major players. Arrows showed their supposed connections to each other.

Among those mentioned in the center was the “Parojinog Drug Trade (Ozamiz City),” an obvious reference to the network allegedly run by the late Mayor Reynaldo Parojinog.

Other politicians whose names appeared on the matrix were Mayors Noron Dadayan of Buadiposo Buntong and Hadji Jamal Abdusalam of Mulondo, and Vice Mayor Noridin Adiong of Ditsaan Ramain, all in Lanao del Sur. They were in the “drug lords” column.

Other names in the center were former Marawi mayors Fahad “Pre” Salic and Solitario Omar Ali, who were both arrested soon after the Marawi crisis erupted on May 23, as well as Solitario’s son Arafat, the incumbent vice mayor.

The President further tagged at least 19 “drug dealers,” including a councilor and several village executives.

“All drug trade in LDS pass to former mayor Pre and Solitario [through]barangay (village) chairman Aliodin, and Vice Mayor Arafat and brother[s]Samer and Walid, respectively,” the drug matrix read.

“Pre and Solitario authored the kidnapping and liquidation of all drug lords… Arrows indicate the drug trade control relationship,” it added.

The post IS may have funded Marawi siege – Palace appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

Big lies, deafening silences
The Manila Times Online

38 minutes ago


LAST week President Rodrigo Duterte was caught telling a brazen lie. He had accused Sen. Antonio Trillanes 4th of hiding unexplained wealth in foreign bank accounts. When the claim was disproven, Duterte resorted to puerile and preposterous excuses. He called his lie an “invention” and mocked the senator for falling for his “trap”. Unfazed, Trillanes is now suing radio broadcaster Erwin Tulfo, Palace communications assistant secretary Mocha Uson, and Davao broadcaster Ben Tesiorna, for libel. It would be good to see a blow struck against those who peddle fake news.

But these are perilous times forcrusaderson the side of truth. Big lies and deafening silences are killing civilized discourse in our country. They are also killing people.

It’s a truism to say that politicians lie. Spinning the truth, partisanship, partiality to kith, kin and province, all these generate and breed dishonesty in one form or another. Whether we like it or not, this is the staple fodder of everyday political life, everywhere, not just in the Philippines.

Duterte’s lies are of a different order. First, they are backed up by the full weight of executive power. Second, they are spread, like a disease, by his cheerleaders, sycophants, andattack dogs. Third, they intimidate, instill fear, and sow terror. Fourth, and most dangerous of all, they demonstrate his unquestionable power.

Duterte wants us to believe that he is being patrioticwhen he insults leaders of Western democracies. He pretends that the United Nations arbitration ruling on the Philippines’ claim to sovereignty in the West Philippine Sea is unimportant.He wants us to believe that loans from China will bring about development and prosperity. He wants us to believe that he can eradicate terrorism in Mindanao by razing cities to the ground, bombing mosques and Islamic schools. He wants us to believe that he can end the communist insurgencyand crafta fair and just peace byfitful stop-start negotiations and fickle alternations between chumminess and bullying. He wants us to believe that anyone who questions, criticizes, or opposes his administration and policies is destabilizing a legitimately elected government. These are big lies.

However, withoutdoubt, his biggest big-time lie is his war on drugs.

When he says that the country is in the grip of 3, nay 4, millioncrazed drug addicts, he is lying. When he says that killing is good for the country and necessary to save the next generation of Filipinos, he is lying. When he justifies the killings by saying that drug addicts have no humanity, and shrugs off the murder of children—now more than 50—as merely “collateral damage,”he is lying.

The President has been likened to one of those banter-loving, good-humored but foul-mouthed elderly male relatives who bring zest and embarrassment to family gatherings. Some have said that in private Duterte is polite and thoughtful, a far cry from his abrasive public persona. He is a good talker. He is charismatic. His swearing, chauvinism, and misogynistic jokes, are liked by many and tolerated by many more. Time and again, he has been let off the hook when he jokes about the raping of women.

But are we willing to excuse his silences?

Hissilences are menacing. When confessed hit man Edgar Matobato testified in the Senate last year, and talked about his role in the Davao Death Squads that terrorized Davao and killed over 1,000 people while Duterte was mayor, Duterte said nothing. When former police officer and assassin Arturo Lascañas later corroborated Matobato’s claims and asserted, unequivocally, that Duterte had ordered him to “go after and kill his personal and political enemies” and was paid for doing so, indeed rewarded handsomely, and that on these instructions Lascañas had slaughtered many men and women, still Duterte said nothing. His silence was abetted by law-makers who abruptly put an end to the investigations, dismissed the testimonies, and allowed Sen. Leila de Lima who chaired the probe, to be slandered, publicly humiliated, and ignominiously carted off to jail.

The President’s current anti-drug war has claimed the lives of thousands. These souls were largely lowly folk, butprovincial doctors, journalists, and environmental lawyers have also been murdered. In fact, more citizens have been extra-judicially killed underDuterte than under any other peacetime president of this country.

Calls to seriously investigate extra-judicial killings have been met withsilence. As yet, Duterte has stubbornly refused to offer an official invitation to the UN Special Rapporteur on extra-judicial and summary executions to visit the Philippines and talk to the victims’ families.

Last May, the Bureau of Customs seized P6.4 billion worth of shabu. The smuggled haul is thought to be the largest in the country’s history. Only one man has been detained—the poor caretaker of the rented warehouse where the shipment was found, an arguably inconsequential figure who may not at all be part of the complex smuggling networkthat spans Manila, Davao and China.Such a spectacular bust elicited no reaction from Duterte. When it transpired that millions of pesos worth of shabu had gone missing while in custody, most likely skimmed off from the haul, still Duterte said nothing.

When his eldest son, Paolo, and his son-in-law, Mans Carpio, and their alleged Chinese associates, many of whom are known to the President, were implicated in the drugs smuggling operations, Duterte kept silent.He advised his son and son-in-law to do the same when both were recently requested to appear before the Senate committee investigating the shipment. Even now, as news of more smuggled shabu shipments are coming to light, amounting in total to an incredible P28.9 billion, the first known to have arrived in June 2016, the month Duterte assumed the presidency and launched his drug war, Duterte has kept silent. Magdalo party-list congressman Gary Alejano has called the silence “suspicious.”

It’s a good word but doesn’t quite convey the full horror, invidiousness and insult of the big lies and shameful silences.

The post Big lies, deafening silences appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

Believe PH
The Manila Times Online

39 minutes ago


AFTER the Day of Protest, we hope things will now settle down and it should be clear to all that the country will not be under martial law and that PRRD remains the duly elected leader. We will never venture into coups d’etatagain for it has been proven that coups are status quo solutions; only the oligarchs win, never Juan dela Cruz.

One year and four months after May 2016, we owe it to our country to settle down and find solutions and build consensus on where the country is going. The formula laid out by PRRD is, manage peace and order and the economy will take care of itself, driven principally by the private sector. Economic managers are working hard to make sure, as we avail of funding options and appropriate revenues, that we are mindful how economic activities impact on the people that truly matter. So, all hands must be on deck and if you do not want to help, do not destroy the Philippines. Instead, prepare for 2019 and 2022, the time when political change can be made legally.

Yes, dissent is a given and being critical should be respected but destroying country should not be allowed because the destruction of the Phiippines will lead to a precarious state for the 22 percent living below the poverty line. Any extra-constitutional removal of a duly elected president will take the country back to square one amidst all the movements happening in Asean and the world. When economic growth is much felt in the region, the PH cannot self-destruct.

Hence, after a year and four months of Operation Tokhang and Double Barrel Reloaded, the Philippine National Police should recalibrate and build on the gains on the war against illegal drugs. It cannot be business as usual for it has proven to be the waterloo of this administration. Go back to the drawing board and be professional in the campaign, for every failure by the PNP is a failure of the administration, taking into consideration the issues raised against it. The names of the Oplan alone evokes “state-sponsored killings” when one can be more inclusive and positive. The days of “golpe de gulat” are gone. And your theater of war is in NCR. Two factors that PRRD and his communication team will have to wrestle with fast.

In communicating the war against illegal drugs, numbers are critical, updates on cases against police vital and removing from the campaign issues of politics primordial. If the evidence will bear it out, cases should be filed by now against elected and appointed officials. No shortcuts, no bullying, no taunting. No doublespeak.

But debunk the numbers and defend the Republic is a must or else, we have a framing internationally that will worry foreign investors. What are the facts from PNP records, as validated by PDEA, from the period July 1, 2016 to August 29, 2017: 1) a total of 70,854 anti-drug operations have been conducted; 2) a total of 107,156 drug personalities have been arrested; 3) 3,811 drug personalities died in anti-drug operations; 4) 176 government employees arrested; 5) 167 elected officials arrested and 6) 33 uniformed personnel arrested. From the period July 1, 2016 to July 26, 2017, 1,308,078 surrenderees have been facilitated. Not much has been heard though on the state of rehabilitation, a much-needed part of the declared war.

The other twin to the peace and order formula is #BuildBuildBuild but nothing is being built. Delays to this infrastructure program is worrisome. No awards have been made save for NEDA approval. PRRD must appoint an interagency task force for #BuildBuildBuild. There’s got to be a sense of urgency going into fiscal year 2018. Any delay will dampen the market and with nine other markets in Asean, we might just see movement away from our shores and we would not like that to happen. Again, information is gold. The task force must be able to communicate to all what is the status of the projects under #BuildBuildBuild.

Instead of focusing on politics and getting the presidential bully pulpit involved in the mud throwing, pivot and get communications on the twin priorities of the Duterte administration. Control and dictate the arc.

The Philippines is well positioned in the Asean’s growth trajectory and we cannot ride the tide well if we do not believe in our capacities for doing so.We need to believe that we can do it.

We can grapple with poverty and institute a long-term program of inclusive growth by replacing CCT with an employment/jobs program. The database for CCT is robust, tap these people, train them now for employment in #BuildBuildBuild. That’s an army of workers right away. Get Tesda to train them. We need to believe that rural Philippines will see its day of intervention. Match these areas with #BuildBuildBuild so that the Top 10 poorest provinces can stand on their own and attract investors. Believe that we can have another green revolution in our midst. Place agriculture as one of the drivers of the economy. Provide food domestically and remove middlemen to increase the income of farmers. Families of farmers should be given all the incentives to remain as farmers because it is not a deadend job. We also need to modernize our farms so that land earns for them not just during one harvest season.

Believing is not hard. When we see a Filipino enter a foreign competition, whether singing, dancing, we identify with them. When our flag waves in beauty competitions, we shout our identity. We go crazy when any Filipino team wins in a sporting competition.

But why is it that when it comes to country, we throw in the towel and condemn it.Why? We should believe that we can. We should continue to believe in country even while we wrestle with the demons of leadership because that is part and parcel of respecting democracy’s mandate. “Great things happen to those who don’t stop believing, trying, learning, and being grateful.” Believe PH, we must.

The post Believe PH appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

Sereno to fight raps, submits reply
The Manila Times Online

39 minutes ago

Chief Justice Ma. Lourdes Sereno will not resign and will face the “false charges” contained in an impeachment complaint against her by lawyer Lorenzo Gadon.

Lawyers for Sereno submitted to the House Committee on Justice on Monday the chief justice’s 85-page verified answer to Gadon’s complaint, arguing that the alleged offenses were not impeachable or were based on “fake news.”

VERIFIED ANSWER Justine Mendoza, a lawyer for Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno, shows the verified answer submitted by Sereno’s camp to the House Committee on Justice on Monday. PHOTO BY RUY L. MENDOZA

“She will fight this to the end and more. She will stay on,” said Jojo Lacanilao, in a news conference in Quezon City.

“This is totally outrageous because not only are the charges totally false, they ignore what the chief justice has achieved for the judiciary and for the country as chief justice,” Lacanilao added.

Winnie Salumbres, a spokesperson for the chief justice, said Sereno was peaceful and at ease. “She is a picture of serenity because she knows in conscience she never did anything wrong,” Salumbres said.

Sereno’s camp submitted her reply 10 days after the Gadon complaint, which accused the chief justice of culpable violations of the Constitution, corruption, betrayal of public trust and other high crimes, was deemed by the House justice committee “sufficient in form and substance.”

Lawyer Alex Poblador said that although most of Gadon’s documents were authentic, these did not support any of the charges.

“What is left with the allegations of Attorney Gadon? They are merely newspaper reports, hearsay. The complaint should not have come to this stage, it should have been dismissed from the very start,” Poblador said.

“The House Committee on Justice has a second opportunity to appreciate the answer and it is our hope that they should now dismiss this case for lack of sufficient grounds and probable cause,” Poblador added.

Poblador also defended Sereno’s purchase of a bullet-proof Toyota Land Cruiser 200 valued at roughly P5 million, which, according to Gadon’s complaint.

Poblador said that the vehicle Sereno was using prior to the acquisition was a “hand-me-down” from earlier chief justices, and constantly broke down.

As a result, Sereno had a bullet-proof blanket taped on one window of the car and a bullet-proof vest.
“The acquisition of the Toyota Land Cruiser is a non-issue, much less a ground for impeachment,” Poblador said.

The post Sereno to fight raps, submits reply appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

On dignity
The Manila Times Online

40 minutes ago


DIGNITY is a concept uttered a lot in light of recent events in our country. “Let us help [drug abuse victims]solve their drug abuse problems by recognizing that they are humans with dignity, too,” Commission on Human Rights Chairman Chito Gascon said, reacting to the tragedy that befell Kian delos Santos.

But what is dignity?

It is one of the most powerful concepts modernity has produced. For those who believe in “the march of progress,” the arc of history for them may be long but it bends towards the realization of human dignity.

When political demands are framed as what human dignity requires, those demands are bestowed a sense of urgency. The powers-that-be that ignore and fail to honor these demands run the risk of being vilified as standing on the wrong side of history.

Throughout its history, dignity has meant different things. It was once associated with prestige, status, rank—this usage of dignity is still reflected in the word “dignitary,” which we use to refer to a person of high rank or position in the government or church.

This notion of dignity is hierarchical. In its theological context, those who are closer to God in the chain of being is deemed to possess a higher version of dignity. St. Ignatius once considered the priesthood as “the apex of dignities.” Priests, according to Pope Innocent III, are superior to man and inferior only to God, as explained in The Dignity and Duties of the Priest by St. Alphonsus Liguori. Even monarchs appeal to theology to legitimize the dignity of their throne.

Secularism divorced dignity from its theological association. Liberal thought used dignity to refer to the “inherent worth” of human beings. Meanwhile, egalitarian thinking tied the concept of dignity with equality, producing the concept of equal dignity: equal inherent worth. Yet dignity has not always been considered as such.

Dignity as externally given can be found in the Leviathan (1651) by Thomas Hobbes. Hobbes mentioned that what they “commonly” called dignity during that time was “the public worth of a man…the value set on him by the Commonwealth…and this value…is understood by offices of command, judicature, public employment; or by names and titles introduced for distinction of such value.”

A century later, in the Fundamental Principles of the Metaphysics of Morals (1785), Kant formulated the concept of dignity that is non-theological, universal, individualistic, egalitarian, and inherent. Differentiating dignity from value, Kant said: “Everything has either Value or Dignity. whatever has a value can be replaced by something else which is equivalent; whatever, on the other hand, is above all value, and therefore admits of no equivalent, has a dignity…an intrinsic worth.”

In his dissenting opinion to Obergefell v. Hodges, the US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) decision legalizing same-sex marriage in the United States, Justice Thomas relied on the Kantian conception of dignity. He argued that because dignity is innate, it can neither be bestowed nor taken away. To illustrate his point, he said:

“Slaves did not lose their dignity (any more than they lost their humanity) because the government allowed them to be enslaved. Those held in internment camps did not lose their dignity because the government confined them. And those denied governmental benefits certainly do not lose their dignity because the government denies them those benefits.”

Many found this utterly absurd, if not totally offensive. ButThomas was just being logical. Because dignity is innate, it follows that no one can give it to you: you already have it inside you. Since it is an inherent feature of being human, there is nothing anyone can do to you that can remove your dignity.

The problem with Thomas’ reasoning is that he failed to see that dignity is not self-enforcing. He is stuck in the metaphysical conception of dignity and didnot consider the significance of “recognition”in order to give dignity a practical application.

Gascon wanted the government to recognize the dignity of drug users. The question is, is this not being done with the rehabilitation program the government has been doing? The more than a million of users and pushers who surrendered and were given a chance to straighten their path signify respect rather than disregard of their dignity.

Recognizing that drug abuse victims have dignity entails determining and condemning who victimized them. They were preyed upon by the drug syndicates.

It is because the Duterte administration recognizes the dignity of our people and the generation that would come after us that it has committed to destroy the apparatus of the drug syndicates, which flooded the country with shabu. And it seems that the CHR that has totally ignored how the shabu trade leads to the massive violations of human dignity.

The post On dignity appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

The gaping hole in Trump’s border wall
The Manila Times Online

41 minutes ago


HOW much of our money does Donald Trump want to pour into his xenophobic fantasy of erecting an impenetrable wall on our Mexican border?

The big-businessman-turned-president insists that costs be damned—just build it! That seems to be a very un-businesslike approach—but then, it’s not his money, is it? For those of you who do care, one measure of what the total tab might be is that he’s now demanding $1.6 billion from Congress to start construction. How much wall will that buy? Seventy-four miles. And how long is the US-Mexican border that he wants to seal off? One thousand, nine-hundred miles long. So, $1.6 billion down, and only 1,826 miles to go!

And let’s not even get into the cost overruns, fraudulent billings, shoddy materials and other scams that the army of corporate contractors will add to the sticker price of Donald’s boondoggle on the border.

All of this reckless spending of our tax dollars for a 1,900-mile barricade of both physical and symbolic ugliness that only an extremist minority of Americans support. Besides being wildly expensive, this Trumpian folly is not needed, won’t work, stifles the border economy, crudely tramples on both property rights and sensitive environments, autocratically separates millions of families and communities—and is an insult not only to the people of Mexico, but also to our own people’s democratic values.

As for the assertion by die-hard Trumpateers that a massive, 30-foot high, six-foot deep, steel-and-concrete barricade will stop illegal immigration from Mexico, here is a fact Congress should ponder before taxing us with this harebrained structure: Two-thirds of undocumented migrants in our country entered with legal visas, then didn’t leave when their visas expired. How does Trump’s gold-plated wall stop people who can simply walk through or fly over it?

But Donald Trump loves it when crowds at his raucous right-wing rallies stand and chant in red-faced fury: “Build that wall! Build that wall!”

So, he keeps fanning their fire by repeatedly promising to wall off Mexico with a multibillion-dollar “big, beautiful” barrier on the border. “We must have THE WALL” he tweeted in late August, promising again that “Mexico will pay for it.”

The problem with his bombastic presidential promises, however, is that they turn out to be duds, and even Trump knows that his wall promise is a total piece of PR trumpery. First, in a secret phone call to Mexican President Peña Nieto, he admitted he was aware that Mexico actually was not going to pay a single peso for the offensive border barrier. But he begged his cross-border counterpart to stop saying so publicly, for Mexico’s adamant refusal to pay was hurting Trump’s political image of being a strong dealmaker.

Second, even though he loudly threatened on August 21 to “close down our government” if Congress doesn’t pony up billions to fund his pet project, reality intervened just four days later when a mass migration poured across the US border. Not a migration of “bad hombres” from Mexico, but of devastating flood waters from the Gulf of Mexico. Hurricane Harvey’s biblical-level of destruction not only swamped the city of Houston and millions of people in communities all along the Texas-Louisiana coastline—but it also has effectively washed away Trump’s folly of frittering away billions of our tax dollars on a monstrous wall that would be as ineffectual as trying to wall off the next Category 4… or Category 5 hurricane.

Ironically, Trump and his anti-big-government congressional cohorts were about to cut nearly a billion dollars from the federal disaster aid budget when Harvey hit the coast. Now, they’ve got to find some $180 billion to add to that budget just to rebuild what Harvey destroyed. Where to get the money? Start by zeroing-out every dime going to Donald’s wall.


The post The gaping hole in Trump’s border wall appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

Lacson bares ‘double tara’ scheme at Customs
The Manila Times Online

41 minutes ago

THE Bureau of Customs (BOC) under the watch of Commissioner Nicanor Faeldon came up with a system that collected “tara” or payoffs more than once, Sen. Panfilo Lacson revealed Monday.

At the resumption of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee investigation into anomalies at the bureau, Sen. Panfilo Lacson said that aside from the usual payoffs given by brokers to have their shipments clear the “green lane,” a special stop order could also be issued by the Office of the Commissioner to prevent the release of the shipment.

GREASE MONEY Customs ‘fixer’ Mark Taguba details the expenses needed to release containers at the Bureau of Customs during the tenure of Commissioner Nicanor Faeldon. PHOTO BY RENE H. DILAN

“After giving payola (payoffs) to access the green lane, another payoff will be made for the lifting of the special stop order,” Lacson said.

Faeldon, who is detained at the Senate but refuses to take part in the probe, has denied the existence of the “tara” system, which was revealed by Lacson in a privilege speech on August 23.

Lacson said the special stop order was introduced during Faeldon’s stint at customs and could only be issued by the commissioner.

Arnel Alcaraz, a customs collector, told the committee the special stop order was a discretionary power of the commissioner.

Liza Sebastian, a collector assigned at the Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service, also noted that special stop orders were issued to prevent the release of shipments even after duties and taxes were paid.

“A special alert order can still be issued even after the lifting of the alert order if violations were found, upon the recommendation of any of the alerting units,” Sebastian said.

Alerting units include the deputy commissioner for the bureau’s intelligence group and the deputy commissioner for enforcement.

Lacson said a certain Michael Saban, a technical consultant at the office of Faeldon, was able to issue a number special stop orders on several shipments, which were approved by the commissioner.

Lacson asked Sebastian if a technical consultant like Saban was authorized to recommend or issue special stop orders. The latter said he was not.

The senator then asked Customs command center head Gerardo Gambala as to why Saban was allowed to make recommendations.

“That was what I did not understand with the status of Michael Saban, because he was a technical consultant,” Gambala said.

Saban was mentioned by customs “fixer” Mark Taguba during one of the Senate hearings as the one who flagged his shipment, forcing him to look for a more “influential” contact, which led him to seek the help of the so-called Davao group.

P92 million ‘tara’

Also during the hearing, Taguba told the committee that he spent as much as P92 million to bribe Customs officials to make sure that his shipment would be released without encountering any problem.

Taguba presented before the committee records of his bank withdrawals, call logs and text messages between him and his contacts at Customs.

In one of the slides in his presentation, Taguba indicated that he paid P489,600 or P27,200 per container for the 18 containers of EMT Trading that arrived on March 27 to 31 and April 3 to 7.

He also showed records of withdrawals he made during the periods from two banks, to pay for shipment fees and payoffs.

“That is only for my transaction with EMT but if we include my other transactions thetara could reach P5 million,” Taguba said.

Apart from the EMT containers, Taguba also facilitated the release of 189 containers of his other clients, with payoffs amounting to P5,140,800.

He said the payoffs were given to various offices at Customs including the internal affairs service, intelligence group, Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS), and even the x-ray section.

Taguba also showed text messages from personnel of the offices asking for the payoffs, namely “Mae” the collector for CIIS, a certain “Jojo” for the Special Studies and Project Development Committee, Joel Pinawin for the intelligence division, Teddy Sagaral for the CIIS district office, and two others named “Gerry” and “Jake.”

Taguba likewise presented calls logs and text exchanges between him and “Tita Nanie,” and a certain “Winnie.”
Pinawin told senators that he knew a certain Mae working at the CIIS, but denied giving instructions to collect money for him and Estrella.

Lacson in an interview after the hearing said the presentation of Taguba had probative value because it came from his own cellular phone, which was subjected to forensic examination by the Philippine National Police.

As for the involvement of Faeldon, Lacson said there was a text message about the P10,000 payoff per container for the Office of the Commissioner.

“If you’re the commissioner and somebody is collecting P10,000 per container for you, I don’t know who is more believable,” added Lacson.

The post Lacson bares ‘double tara’ scheme at Customs appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
Solano: I was not alone when Atio was brought to hospital

Twitter - cnnphilippines

42 minutes ago

View on Website

‘No way back’ in Myanmar’s crucible of communal hate
The Manila Times Online

43 minutes ago

SITTWE, MYANMAR: Hindus once sold food to Rohingyas, spoke the same language and even cut the hair of their Muslim neighbors. But co-existence among the collage of ethnicities in Myanmar’s Rakhine state has been ruptured—perhaps irreversibly—by the bloodshed of the last month.

Violence has periodically cut through the western state, where communal rivalries have been sharpened by British colonial meddling, chicanery by Myanmar’s army and fierce dispute over who does —and does not—belong in Rakhine.

But the events of August 25, when raids by Rohingya militants unleashed a swirl of violence across the north, have sunk Rakhine to new depths of hate.

“All of our family died at the village… we will not go back,” said Chaw Shaw Chaw Thee, one of hundreds of displaced Hindus seeking shelter in the state capital Sittwe.

The 20-year-old said she lost 23 family members as Rohingya militants swarmed the clutch of Hindu villages in Kha Maung Seik, near the Bangladesh border.

On Sunday the army said 28 badly decomposed bodies of Hindu men, women and children had been pulled from two mass graves in the same area.

It was not immediately clear if they belonged to Chaw Shaw Chaw Thee’s family.

Heavily pregnant when she fled, she gave birth at a disused football stadium in Sittwe, where hundreds of traumatized Hindus now sleep on grubby mats in the overcrowded concourse.

An army lockdown has made it impossible to independently verify what happened in the villages of northern Rakhine, an area dominated by Rohingya Muslims who are a minority elsewhere in the mainly Buddhist country.

But allegations, carved along ethnic lines, are spinning out as conspiracy and competing identity claims override empathy between former neighbors.

Hindus, who make up less than one percent of Rakhine’s population, accuse Rohingya of massacreing them, burning their homes and kidnapping women for marriage.

Meanwhile, the Rohingya, some 430,000 of whom have fled to Bangladesh, trade accusations with ethnic Rakhine Buddhists of grisly mob attacks and army “clearance operations” that have emptied their villages.

Small ethnic groups such as the Mro, Thet and Diagnet have also been caught up in the killings and chaos of the last month.

“We were barbers for Muslims, our women sold things in Muslim villages, I had Muslim friends, we had no problems,” said Kyaw Kyaw Naing, a 34-year-old Hindu who can dance across linguistic divides in Hindi, Rakhine, Burmese and Rohingya.

Community ties in what is also Myanmar’s poorest state have now unraveled.

“We want to go back, but we will not if the Muslims are there.”

Last week Myanmar’s leader Aung san Suu Kyi told the international community that Rohingya refugees were welcome back if they were properly “verified”.


The post ‘No way back’ in Myanmar’s crucible of communal hate appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

Merkel wins 4th term as chancellor amid rise of right-wing opposition
The Manila Times Online

45 minutes ago

BERLIN: German Chancellor Angela Merkel woke up Monday to a fourth term but now faces the double headache of an emboldened hard-right opposition party and thorny coalition talks ahead.

If the campaign was widely decried as boring, its outcome was a bombshell – a populist surge weakened Merkel’s conservatives as well as the center-left Social Democrats, handing both their worst results in decades.
“A nightmare victory for Merkel,” said Germany’s best-selling daily Bild.

After 12 years in power and running on a promise of stability and continuity, Merkel’s CDU/CSU bloc scored 33 percent, according to final results, against 20.5 percent for the Social Democrats under challenger Martin Schulz, who pledged to go into the opposition.

The election spelt a breakthrough for the anti-Islam Alternative for Germany (AfD), which with 12.6 percent became the third strongest party and vowed to “go after” Merkel over her migrant and refugee policy.

News weekly Der Spiegel said Merkel had no one but herself to blame for the bruising she got from voters.

“Angela Merkel deserved this defeat,” Spiegel’s Dirk Kurbjuweit wrote, accusing her of running an “uninspired” campaign and “largely ignoring the challenges posed by the right.”

The entry of dozens of hard-right nationalist MPs to the glass-domed Bundestag chamber breaks a taboo in post-World War II Germany.

“We will take our country back,” vowed the AfD’s jubilant Alexander Gauland, who has recently urged Germans to be proud of their war veterans and said a government official who is of Turkish origin should be “dumped in Anatolia.”

While joyful supporters of the AfD – a party with links to the far-right French National Front and Britain’s UKIP – sang the German anthem at a Berlin club late Sunday, hundreds of protesters shouted “Nazis out!”

‘Bitter disappointment’

All other political parties have ruled out working with the AfD, whose leaders call Merkel a “traitor” for allowing in more than one million asylum seekers since the height of the refugee influx in 2015.

While Germany still digests the rise of the right-wingers, Merkel’s inner circle will prepare Monday for what could be lengthy coalition talks ahead with a number of smaller parties.

Party leaders were to meet at 0700 GMT at Berlin headquarters to draw their conclusions from the election that
some have dubbed a referendum on the refugee crisis, a contentious issue especially for her Bavarian CSU allies.

CSU chief Horst Seehofer, a vocal critic of Merkel’s asylum policy, called the poll outcome a “bitter disappointment” and vowed to close the “open flank” on the right before state elections next year, signalling more trouble ahead.

A weakened Merkel must now find a new junior partner after the Social Democrats (SPD) declared they would go into opposition, to recover the support they lost while governing in Merkel’s shadow.

Schulz, putting a brave face on the defeat, vowed that the 150-year-old traditional workers’ party would serve as “the bulwark of democracy in this country” and stop the AfD from leading the opposition. AFP

The post Merkel wins 4th term as chancellor amid rise of right-wing opposition appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

Wiretapping, kidnapping raps filed vs Hontiveros
The Manila Times Online

47 minutes ago

Sen. Risa Hontiveros was on Monday charged with wiretapping, obstruction of justice and kidnapping at the Office of the Ombudsman.

Former Negros Oriental Rep. Jacinto Paras and lawyers Eligio Mallari and Nestor Ifurong accused Hontiveros of obstruction of justice for her refusal to turn over three minors who witnessed the killing of Kian Loyd de los Santos to the Public Attorney’s Office and the National Bureau of Investigation.

Sen. Risa Hontiveros

They said the senator took custody of the three minors from August 19 to September 3.

They alleged that Hontiveros “has committed the crime of inducing a minor to abandon his home, penalized under Article 271 of the Revised Penal Code as amended. As stated earlier, she admitted the fact that after her inducing the minors to abandon their parental home, she took custody of them and placed them in an undisclosed location.”

The complainants claimed that the senator violated the anti-wiretapping law when she photographed the text messages send to Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre 2nd.

“The secret photographing or recording by the conspirators Hontiveros-Baraquel and the photographer (John Doe) using a camera to record the text messages found in Aguirre [2nd]’s cellphone without the permission of Aguirre and the other communicator…is a violation of the anti-wiretapping law,” they said.

Hontiveros said the complaint “is a desperate attempt to deflect public attention away from their text conversation inadvertently captured by someone’s camera lens, which caught them red-handed plotting against me during a Senate hearing inside the Senate.”

“Hindi ito dapat pag-aksayahan ng panahon at pansin ng mamamayan. We will not be distracted. Tuloy ang ating kampanya para sa katarungan at para panagutin si Secretary Aguirre at pagbitiwin siya sa kanyang puwesto (The public should not waste time and attention on this. We will not be distracted. Our campaign for justice and to hold Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre 2nd liable and to make him resign from his post continues),” she added.

The senator earlier sought Aguirre’s resignation for alleged “unethical conduct,” citing text messages between him and a certain Cong Jing.

She alleged that Aguirre ordered Cong Jing to expedite the case to be filed against her.

The post Wiretapping, kidnapping raps filed vs Hontiveros appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
The Expanded Anti-Red Tape Act passed during its third and final reading at the Senate.

Twitter - cnnphilippines

54 minutes ago

View on Website

Humbled Merkel vows to win back hard-right voters

56 minutes ago

BERLIN, Germany – Chancellor Angela Merkel said Monday, September 25, she would talk with all mainstream parties about trying to form a "good, stable" government after Germany's watershed election, and vowed to try to win back voters who supported an upstart nationalist force.

Sunday's election saw the right-wing populist Alternative ...

View on Website

Schauffele wins Tour, Thomas claims $10M jackpot
The Manila Times Online

1 hour ago

ATLANTA: Rookie Xander Schauffele outdid the big guns to win the Tour Championship on Sunday (Monday in Manila) but Justin Thomas hit the jackpot by taking home the $10 million prize for claiming the FedEx Cup playoff title.

The 23-year-old Schauffele fired a two-under 68 in the fourth round to became the first rookie to win the Tour Championship as he beat Thomas by one shot at East Lake golf course.

Thomas put the finishing touches on his breakthrough season by closing with a 66 to claim the PGA Tour’s playoff title and the $10 million first place prize that goes with it.

“As a competitor you are mad that you didn’t win the tournament but then you realize what an unbelievable honour this is, the fact that you can win something over the entire course of the season,” said Thomas, who won five tournaments in 2017, including the PGA Championship.

“I played really well over the season and it is nice to finally play well in some playoff events and have it all pay off.”

Xander Schauffele of the United States lines up a putt on the 15th green during the final round of the TOUR Championship at East Lake Golf Club on Monday in Atlanta, Georgia. AFP PHOTO

The last time different players won the tournament and the FedEx Cup was in 2009, when Phil Mickelson won the Tour Championship and Tiger Woods won the Cup.

Jordan Spieth made a run at the FedEx Cup title with a Sunday charge but his three-under 67 left him in second place overall, 660 points back of Thomas in the standings.

“He has that belief now that he can make it happen,” Spieth said of Thomas. “The progression he has made this year into becoming a phenomenal closer has been a pleasure to watch.”

The Tour Championship is the last of four events of the FedEx Cup playoffs and the finale to the PGA Tour campaign for the 11th consecutive season.

Thomas’ playoff win brings to a close the year-long schedule that began last October in California.

Five players, including Thomas, controlled their own playoff destiny if they could capture the Tour Championship this week, but Schauffele came out of the shadows to make it interesting. Spieth, Dustin Johnson, Marc Leishman and Jon Rahm also could have all won the FedEx Cup title with a Tour Championship victory.

Schauffele finished with a 12-under 268 total, one stroke ahead of Thomas.

Russell Henley (65), and Kevin Kisner (70) tied for third at 10-under 270.

England’s Paul Casey, who began the final round with the lead, struggled from the beginning. He had back-to-back bogeys on the front nine and wound up with a 73 and finished in fifth at 271. The consolation prize for Casey is he gets to go home and see his newborn daughter for the first time.

Spieth made a run but finished in a tie for seventh at seven-under 273 and was left to muse about missed opportunities.

Spieth’s swindle falls short
“I almost cheated my way into winning the FedEx Cup when (Thomas) really deserved it,” Spieth said.

Schauffele added some drama to his final hole when his two foot putt for the win ringed the cup before falling in.

“I thought I missed it, that’s why I couldn’t’ even react to celebrate because I thought I just missed a two-footer to win,” Schauffele said.

Rory McIlroy, the 2016 FedEx Cup champion, finished 58th in the FedEx Cup standings and did not qualify to play this year in the Tour Championship.


The post Schauffele wins Tour, Thomas claims $10M jackpot appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

Bolts, Hotshots eye quick entry into semis
The Manila Times Online

1 hour ago

Armed with a twice-to-beat advantage, No. 1 Meralco and No. 4 Star shoot for semifinals spots when they take on separate foes today in the quarterfinals of the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Season 42 Governors’ Cup at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.

The Bolts, who closed out the elimination round at the top of the standings with 9-2 win-loss record, battle No. 8 Blackwater in the first game at 4:15 p.m. while the Hotshots face No. 5 Northern Luzon Expressway (NLEX) in the main tiff at 7 p.m.

Coach Norman Black’s wards are coming from a come-from-behind 104-101 win over San Miguel Beer last Sunday to clinch the top seed.

Allen Durham of Meralco PHOTO BY RUSSEL PALMA

But Black is not taking the Elite lightly.

“It is the game that we have to defend the three-point line very well. Henry Walker takes a lot of threes, Mike Digregorio also takes a lot of threes, even Roi Sumang takes a lot of threes, so our perimeter defense will be the key to this game,” said Black.

Reigning best import Allen Durham, who is averaging 27.8 points, 19.0 rebounds and seven assists in the elimination round, carried the Bolts to victory against the Beermen after scoring 14 of his 35 points in the fourth quarter along with 13 rebounds and eight assists.

Blackwater, at No. 8 with a 5-6 win-loss record, is banking on Walker and new recruit Maliksi while the bench also needs to step up to force a deciding game.

Walker is averaging 27.5 points, 16.7 rebounds and five assists in the elimination while Maliksi is posting 25.5 points average in two games for the Elite.

“We will go all-out for a win tomorrow against Meralco,” said Elite coach Leo Isaac.

Star, meanwhile, aims to repeat over NLEX to reach the semifinals and face the winner of the Meralco-Blackwater tussle.

The Hotshots, who also finished with 7-4, got the free entry in the top four following the Bolts’ win over the Beermen.

“We have to level up our mindset, plays and preparation. I need to make sure my players are motivated enough and ready for the battle starting tomorrow,” said Star coach Chito Victolero, whose team is coming from a 101-93 win over the Road Warriors last Sunday.

NLEX also ended up with a 7-4 slate but had to settle for fifth spot due to inferior quotient.

The post Bolts, Hotshots eye quick entry into semis appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
The new restrictions on travel vary by country and include a phased-in approach.

Twitter - cnnphilippines

1 hour ago

View on Website

Knights seek solo third spot vs Stags
The Manila Times Online

1 hour ago

Colegio de San Juan de Letran guns for a solo third while San Sebastian College-Recoletos seeks to return to the Magic Four when the two teams square off in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Season 93 basketball tournament at 2 p.m. today at the FilOil Flying V Center in San Juan City.

Letran joined Jose Rizal University on No. 3 with identical 7-6 win-loss records following its 88-79 beating of a luckless Mapua University for two-game winning streak.

Bong Quinto starred in the Knights’ recent run as the forward averaged 21 points, nine rebounds and 2.5 assists in 30 minutes of action.

Bong Quinto of Colegio de San Juan de Letran

San Sebastian, on the other hand, is sitting on No. 5 after keeping its playoff run going with a 73-61 domination of College of Saint Benilde last Thursday.

Renzo Navarro stepped up for the Stags in their previous outing as the playmaker notched a game-high 16 points while main man Michael Calisaan tallied a double-double of 11 markers and 11 boards.

Letran head coach Jeff Napa vowed his wards will go all-out against the equally determined men of San Sebastian mentor Egay Macaraya.

“Very exciting game. Rest assured, we’ll bring out our A-game especially with crowded standings. We really need to win,” said Napa.

“I’m pretty sure San Sebastian also wants to win. We’re just going to give our best to win the game,” he added.

Meanwhile, Emilio Aguinaldo College tries to keep its Final Four chances when it tangles with the leading Lyceum of the Philippines University at 4 p.m.

The Generals seek to bounce back from a sorry 69-74 loss to Arellano University, which dropped them to No. 6 with a 6-6 card and put their playoff contention in danger.

The Pirates, who are already assured of a semifinals slot and a twice-to-beat advantage, aims to improve their unbeaten slate in 13 games and close in on another historic sweep.

The post Knights seek solo third spot vs Stags appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

Dwyane Wade, Bulls to part ways – report
The Manila Times Online

1 hour ago

CHICAGO: Dwyane Wade and the Chicago Bulls have agreed to part ways after the veteran point guards’ first season with his home­town team, the US media reported on Sunday night (Monday in Manila).

The 35-year-old Wade has reached a buyout agreement with the Bulls, according to American broadcaster ESPN.

Dwyane Wade AFP PHOTO

Wade, who has been hit by a series of injuries the past few seasons, was slated to make $23.8 million with the Bulls in 2017-18. Once he clears waivers, he can listen to offers from other teams.

The Cleveland Cavaliers, Oklahoma City Thunder, San Antonio Spurs and his former Miami Heat team could all make a pitch for Wade. The Cavaliers are believed to be the frontrunners.

Wade, who grew up on Chicago’s south side, averaged 18.3 points and 3.8 assists in 60 games for the Bulls last season. It was his lowest point totals since his 2003 rookie season.


The post Dwyane Wade, Bulls to part ways – report appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

3 Filipina beauties acted as round girls in Thrilla in Manila
The Manila Times Online

1 hour ago

Twelve days into the Muham­mad Ali-Joe Frazier October 1 Thrilla in Manila classic encounter, local organizers had pronounced that the host premier city of the country was ready to stage the 12-round fight as scheduled.

Trainers of both the title-defending Ali and pretender Frazier – Angelo Dundee and Eddie Futch, respectively, for the second time, inspected the Philippine Coliseum venue and its facilities, especially the newly-installed Everlast ring from New York and, in as many times, found everything in order.

Like when they first made an ocular inspection of the fight venue, Dundee and Futch expressed their satisfaction with the efficient way preparations had been handled.

Ali’s trainer Angelo Dundee and his Frazier counterpart Eddie Futch during final ocular inspection of Philippine Coliseum venue. PHOTO FROM EDDIE ALINEA’S FILE

“I have been here once before and the situation was the same. Proof of your people’s expertise in organizing an event of this huge magnitude, “ Futch told everyone in a press conference presided over by Games and Amusements Board chair and co-promoter Louie Tabuena after the inspection.

Tabuena, likewise, announced the names of the three Filipina beauties who will act as round girls during the fight – Pinky Albeerto, Evelyn Abirgos and Emma Infante.

The three were chosen from an original lost of 26 candidates by a panel of judges, headed by Tabuena himself.

Ms. Alberto, at the time of her selection, was working as private secretary at the Southern Negros Development Corp. Ms. Abirgos was a Hyatt Regency Hotel usherette, while Ms. Infante was a student of St. Paul College in Quezon City.

Misses Alberto, Abirgos and Infante were given five round each to work the 15-round world heavyweight championship tussle.

Tabuena had earlier named, too, Filipino referee Carlos “Sonny” Padilla as third man in the ring and his compatriots Larry Nadayag and Alfredo Quiazon as two of the three judges.

With everything but the fight itself being awaited, Tabuena announced several entertainment shows for media men to ease pressure they’d been at in the course of their hectic pre-fight coverage.

On the night of Tabuena’s announcement, for instance, local and visiting journalists were entertained by the “Pangkat Kawayan” (Bamboo Troupe) and the Barangay Dance Troupe during cocktails at the 10th floor of he Bayview Plaza, where the bulk of foreign newsmen were billeted.

Composed of young boys and girls musicians, the world-famous Pangkat Kawayan performed a versatile repertoire with an all-bamboo-made instruments to the delight of their guests.

The special treat, tendered by the Committee on Special events, also featured jazz singer Jacqui Magno in a solo guitar performance.

Teachers from the Philippine Normal College (now Philippine Normal University) featured a rich display of native Philippine dances.

The post 3 Filipina beauties acted as round girls in Thrilla in Manila appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

Dula, Alavy-Chafi lead MoS awardees
The Manila Times Online

1 hour ago

Record-breaker Marc Bryan Dula of Wisenheimer Academy and Ehm Ahmadelle Alavy-Chafi of Diliman Preparatory School bannered the Most Outstanding Swimmer awardees in the Elite Class of the Philippine Swimming League (PSL) 121st National Series held in Abucay, Bataan.

Dula, the reigning Male Swimmer of the Year, swept all the gold medals in his five events highlighted by a record-breaking feat in the 400m freestyle (5:35.86) to pocket the MOS trophy in the boys’ 10-year category.

Not to be outdone was Alavy-Chafi who also claimed five gold medals in the en route to winning the top honors in the girls’ 9-year division of the tournament supported by The Manila Times and the Philippine Sports Commission.

The Most Outstanding Swimmer awardees pose for a photo with winning coaches and Philippine Swimming League President Susan Papa and Secretary General Maria Susan Benasa. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Also winning MOS awards were future Olympian Micaela Jasmine Mojdeh of Immaculate Heart of Mary College-Parañaque (girls’ 11-year) and Diliman Preparatory School standouts Paula Carmela Cusing (girls’ 14-year), Albert Sermonia II (12-year) and Francino Archer Corpuz (boys’ 9-year).

The other MOS winners were Lovie Joy Ramos (7), Alexandra Marie Pedracio (8), Triza Tabamo (10), Ashley Nicole Ranada (12), Alexi Lucile Gapultos (13) and Maricar Openiano (15-over) in girls, and Master Charles Janda (8), Melbourne Carlos Guzarin Jr. (9), Ethan David Gabriel (11), Sean Vizcarra (13), Andre Abenir (14) and Erickson Nastor (15-over) in boys.

Host team One Bataan Swimming Team bagged the overall championship crown with 849 points while Agyu Tamu Swimming Team settled for second with 572 points and Diliman Preparatory School wound up third with 543 points.

Rounding up the Top 10 were Grand Villa (468), Eusebio Skolar Swimming Team (384), Philippine Navy Dependent (362), Aqua Nators (316), Lansang Swim Team (224), Pampanga Swimming Team (220) and Mighty Wahoos (208).

The PSL will be holding its 122nd National Series on Saturday at the Rizal Memorial Swimming Pool in Malate, Manila. It will serve as qualifying tournament for the 2019 Summer World University Games to be held in Napoli, Italy.

“We’re inviting everyone to participate in our next competition to be held at the Rizal Meorial Swimming Pool in Manila especially those college students who want to be part of the PSL team in the 2019 Universiade. We want to form a strong team as early as now as per advise of PSL Chairman and Sen. Nikki Coseteng,” said PSL President Susan Papa.

The PSL is recognized by the Philippine Sports Commission as the official swimming association in the country following its impressive grassroots development program that aims to train talented swimmers for future international competitions.

The post Dula, Alavy-Chafi lead MoS awardees appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

Coseteng strikes at FESSAP
The Manila Times Online

1 hour ago


(Part 2)
Former Senator Anna Dominique Coseteng, the chairman of the Philippine Swimming League (PSL) confronted the Federation of School Sports Association of the Philippines (FESSAP) on certain issues during an event held at the National Press Club on September 9.

Here is the continuation of the transcript of Coseteng’s impromptu speech during the event verbatim:

“So I just want it on the record noh? Kasi baka akala n’yo I am a trouble-maker, no I’m not. I’m willing to be your alila in fact I have been very quiet and I’ve been taking all of these kaya lang tonight sabi ko totoo pala ang sinasabi nila pumunta ka mamaya di ka naman inimbita, pumunta kasi ano ‘yung silver medalist bibigyan ng award kaya inuulit ko sa inyo ko binibigay yung lechon para sa lahat ng tao dahil ikaw nanalo ng silver medal and I’m very very, very proud of you para ipakita namin hindi lang ako para sa swimming. Kung may mananalo, ipagtatanggol ko kayo.

Si Wesley So nanalo ng gold medal, binasura lang s’ya halos ng gobyerno natin, kawawa naman. And he was, he won the gold medal because FESSAP brought him there.

So I hope that this is not going to be the first time and I hope this will not be the last time I’m going to say this because it’s very, very, very hurting, it is very humiliating that after everything that we’ve done together, and I am only here I tell you I repeat is only because of David Ong. Mataas ang respeto ko sa kanya, mataas ang tingin ko sa kanya, at kahit kami inaapi, OK lang kami, pero sana was mangyari yun ulit kasi ang tao nagtitiwala sa FESSAP. Nagbibigay ng donation, San Miguel, Best Tank, kung anu-ano. Maraming kayong tinatanggap na pera pero para lang malaman ng sponsors n’yo kahit na piso wala kaming kinukuha diyan, kahit na piso po. Iharap nyo kami kahit sa Diyos, kahit saan nyo kami iharap kasi gusto ko lang maging magaan kami kay David, maging magaan kami sa FESSAP na hindi kami pabigat, hindi kami palamunin.

So iyon lang po ang amin. I hope you enjoy the dinner. Congratulations. I didn’t mean to spoil the fun. But I’m telling you how hurt we are in Philippine Swimming League because this is not anymore funny.

Manganganak nang manganganak ito ng ibang bagay beyond my control. Ang daming parents diyan na hindi nakasama dahil sinabi samin hanggang 50 swimmers lang kayo, bawal na kayo samantalang we were allowed one hundred and four swimmers pero pinakiusap sa amin 50 lang kayo ha? ‘Yung 50 sa FESSAP manggagaling.

Ilan ang naipadala ng FESSAP? Baka anim baka pito. So, pinagpapasensiyahan, OK lang sa amin iyon walang problema, ako naman ang nakaharap dun sa mga parents na sinabihan ko, misis ka hindi masasama yung anak nyo. Bakit? Eh kasi ‘yung FESSAP humingi samin ng 54 slots, ibinigay namin ‘yung 54 slots na ‘yun sa FESSAP para makasama sila ng mas maraming officials. Pagkatapos hindi ko na ma-control kaya sabi ko na lang, pasensiya ka na next time na lang ulit.

Ganun lang ang sinasabi ko year after year, so I hope you understand how I feel.

I have. I don’t want any kind of hatred to anybody but I’m just saying that I’m totally shocked after all ‘yung Philippine Swimming League ang nagpapadala kasama ng FESSAP sa swimming biglang iba na ‘yung nakikita ko dun sa horizon, dun sa nakikita kong sinasabi nyong official na mangangasiwa ng committee for swimming.

Ni hindi man lang sinama si Susan Papa na siya ang naging dahilan kung bakit nabuo itong Philippine Swimming League.

So again thank you very much. I’m sorry David I have to say this but only I have respect for you that’s why I’m here.”

The video clip of Coseteng was recorded and was viewed by more than 50,000 people not only in the Philippines but in other parts of the world via social media. Messages expressing different reactions were posted in Facebook including Graham Lim’s case of being an Undesirable Alien as well as the Court of Appeals’ corresponding decision with finality.

Coseteng later met with the PSL Board and gave assurance that she will take care of Graham Lim, the person that has been manipulating FESSAP’s dealings particularly in the World University Games.

Also, posted in social media are the names and photos of the Officers of the FESSAP namely David Ong (President), Alvin Tai Lian (Chairman of the Board), Danilo Madlansacay (Hon. Vice Chairman from Megaworld), Christian D. Tan (Vice President for Operations), Col. Ariel Porfirio O. Querubin (Deputy Secretary General) and Robert Milton Calo (Executive Vice President).

Coseteng has also shown the PSL Board a document from the Bureau of Immigration that reads:

“WHEREFORE, pursuant to the directive of the DOJ, it is ordered that the name GRAHAM CHUA LIM, Taiwanese national, is hereby included in the Bureau’s Blacklist.

The previous Order which placed his name in the Blacklist under reference no. ADD-03-1443 is hereby reinstated.

Let a copy of this Order be furnished the Chief of Airport Operations Division and the Head Supervisors at BI-NAIA I, II & III, MCIA, DMIA, LIA, RA, AIA, DIA, BINOC and the Information and Communication Technology Section for their information and appropriate action.


10 December 2012

The post Coseteng strikes at FESSAP appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

Federer leads Europe to maiden Laver Cup title
The Manila Times Online

1 hour ago

PRAGUE: World No.2 Roger Federer handed Team Europe the maiden Laver Cup title after beating Team World’s Nick Kyrgios in a super tie-break thriller in Prague on Sunday (Monday in Manila).

Federer, this year’s Australian Open and Wimbledon champion, won 4-6, 7-6 (8/6), 11/9 to give Team Europe an unbeatable 15-9 lead.

But the 36-year-old Swiss legend struggled against the 20th-ranked, 22-year-old Australian and his flawless serve, losing the first set on a single break.

When he finally broke Kyrgios halfway through set two, he yelled “Come on!” in relief, only to lose his serve again in the next game.

But Federer capitalized on the system of the tournament he had founded — forcing Kyrgios into longer exchanges, he edged him in the second-set tie-break, then came back from 8-5 down in the decisive super tie-break.

Roger Federer of Team Europe serves a ball to Nick Kyrgios of Team World during third day of Laver Cup on Monday in O2 Arena in Prague. AFP PHOTO

“I kind of felt good going into the breaker,” Federer said.

“It was a nail-biter at the end but for me personally it was a dream scenario.”

“It was an incredible journey really, it was way better than I ever thought it would be,” he added about the tournament.

“It felt like winning some of the biggest matches in my life. It was like a fairy tale.”

Kyrgios said the loss “just hurt.”

“I gave everything I had and I came short.”

The start of the clash saw the controversial Kyrgios briefly kneel on the court in a gesture which sparked speculation that he was joining the ongoing protest against US President Donald Trump.

But Kyrgios explained this was his trademark gesture to “remember the two most important people that have passed away” — a reference to his late grandmother and grandfather.

A host of NFL players chose to kneel in games across the US on Sunday during the playing of American national anthem in a demonstration against racial inequality.

Team Europe, the odds-on favorites with five of the world’s top seven players, entered Sunday with a 9-3 lead which narrowed as Jack Sock and John Isner beat Tomas Berdych and Marin Cilic in the opening doubles rubber.

On Sunday, the winner of each rubber earned three points, against one on Friday and two on Saturday.

Alexander Zverev then took Europe within sight of the trophy by beating Sam Querrey in straight sets, but world No.1 Rafael Nadal missed his chance as he lost to big-serving John Isner in straight sets.

Sock and Isner beat Berdych and Cilic 7-6 (7/5), 7-6 (8/6) with Sock’s vicious forehand leading the charge on the American’s 25th birthday.

In the day’s second rubber, a break in each set was all German youngster Zverev, the world number four, needed to beat 16th-ranked American Querrey 6-4, 6-4 in their first-ever encounter.

Isner’s greatest moment was yet to come as the world number 17 edged Nadal, this year’s French and US Open champion.

Nadal lost his serve in game one with a double-fault before Isner’s errors helped him draw level in game ten, but Isner broke back at once and finished the set with the help of two second-serve aces in the last game.

He then swept Nadal in the second-set tie-break after both held on to their serves.

“We were lucky to be 9-3 before today,” said Nadal. “We are very happy to win the first Laver Cup for Europe. Let’s enjoy this moment.”

Skippered by Bjorn Borg, Team Europe also comprised Dominic Thiem, while Frances Tiafoe and Denis Shapovalov played for John McEnroe’s Team World earlier in the tournament.

The organizers said Sunday Chicago would host the next edition of the Laver Cup on September 21 to 23, 2018.


The post Federer leads Europe to maiden Laver Cup title appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

ICTSI Summit Point: Stop Mondilla
The Manila Times Online

1 hour ago

The Philippine Golf Tour winds up its 2017 season with the ICTSI Players Championship beginning today in Lipa, Batangas with focus on Clyde Mondilla and a slew of local players out to foil the virtual Order of Merit champion and improve on their respective OOM rankings at the Summit Point Golf Club.

Mondilla, winner of three tournaments this year, including the ICTSI Rivera Classic of the PGT Asia Tour two weeks ago, slugs it out with Zanieboy Gialon and Jhonnel Ababa in the 7:30 a.m. flight on No. 1, relieved of the pressure of gutting it out in the final PGT leg for a first OOM crown.


With three of the country’s leading players in the OOM Top 4 list out for this week’s P3 million event sponsored by ICTSI, Mondilla is a cinch for the coveted individual title with P2,606,409 in earnings with the fifth-running Ababa and No. 6 Gialon too far behind with winnings of P1,585,345 and P1,223,572, respectively.

But the Del Monte ace has vowed to go all the way in this event, which stakes P550,000 prize to the winner, in a bid to boost his confidence for the PGTA circuit which resumes in November with two $100,000 tournaments.

That also goes with the rest of the elite 75-player field, ensuring a spirited battle for top honors at the par-72 Robert Trent Jones Jr.-designed layout which features replicas of 18 renowned golf holes in the world.

“Clyde has the edge on long courses because of his power. But at Summit Point, we’re pretty even off the tee, so I think it will boil down to who putts well in the end,” said Gialon, seeking a follow-up to his runaway victory at ICTSI Calatagan last June.

Tony Lascuña, Miguel Tabuena and Angelo Que, the next three players behind Mondilla in the OOM ranking, will not be around this week with Lascuna and Tabuena competing in the Taiwan Masters and Que vying in the Japan PGA Tour.

Jay Bayron, winner here in 2015 and No. 9 in the OOM, is also tipped to contend for the crown as he sets out with No. 8 Michael Bibat and recent PGTA ICTSI Splendido leg winner and No. 7 Rene Menor at 7:10 a.m., also on the first hole while Arnold Villacencio also hopes to relive his memories on the course where he scored his breakthrough win in 2014.

Villacencio will start at 7:40 a.m. in the company of Omar Dungca and young gun Keanu Jahns, also on No. 1.

Others expected to crowd Mondilla and the fancied bets are Mhark Fernando, Jobim Carlos, Rufino Bayron, Jessie Balasabas, Justin Quiban, Orlan Sumcad, Ira Alido, Jun Bernis, Marvin Dumandan, Elmer Salvador, Ferdie Aunzo and Mars Pucay.

Also out to spoil the locals’ title drive in the event organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc. and backed by Custom Clubmakers, Meralco, Champion, Summit Mineral Water, K&G Golf Apparel, BDO, Sharp, KZG, PLDT and M.Y. Shokai Technology, Inc. are a host of foreign aces, led by Americans Elliot Hume and Lexus Keoninh, Koreans Hwang Myung Chal, Kim Jun Sik, Park Jun Sung and Lee Hyeon Tae, Australians Nathan Park and Ian Tonumaipe’a, Japanese Seiji Yanagisawa and Dutch Guido Van der Valk.

Meanwhile, the next PGT Asia Tour leg will be held Nov. 15-18 for the ICTSI Wack Wack while Luisita will host the fifth stop ib Nov. 29-Dec. 2 for the CAT Open. Mondilla also leads the PGTA OOM race.

The post ICTSI Summit Point: Stop Mondilla appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

Lady Bulldogs blast Bombers, gain PVL semifinals playoff
The Manila Times Online

1 hour ago

National U primed up for its much-awaited duel with Ateneo as it blasted Jose Rizal U, 25-11, 25-15, 25-13, yesterday to clinch at least a playoff for the other Final Four berth in the Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference at the Filoil Flying V Center in San Juan on Monday.

Jaja Santiago, Risa Sato, Aiko Urdas and Jorelle Singh, along with setter Jasmine Nabor, proved too much for the hapless Lady Bombers as the Lady Bulldogs cruised to the 62-minute win to stretch their win run to four in Group A.

The victory also augured well for their preparation against the Lady Eagles on Saturday in a duel for the first semis seat in their side of the two-division tournament organized by Sports Vision.

National U’s Jaja Santiago towers over JRU’s Christine Ebuenga for an easy hit as Lady Bulldog Risa Sato looks on. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

It was also NU’s second shutout win, the other against Lyceum, with the in-form Lady Bulldogs dropping just two sets in their dominant run in the season-ending conference of the league backed by Mikasa and Asics.

“Everything is starting to fall into place but we’re not yet in the semis so we have to continue to work hard,” said NU coach Babes Castillo.

At 3-1, Ateneo could force a tie for No. 1 with a victory over NU on Saturday while Far Eastern U, toting a 2-1 card, is also eyeing to finish at 4-1 with a sweep of its last two games against Jose Rizal U tomorrow and Lyceum next Monday.

Singh pumped in nine attack points and hammered in four aces, Santiago delivered 12 markers, including nine spikes, while Urdas and Sato combined for 19 points for the Lady Bulldogs.

Shola Alvarez scored five points while Karen Montojo, Dolly Versoza and Christine Ebuenga combined for only 10 hits for the ousted Lady Bombers, who fell to 0-4.

Earlier, Far Eastern U recovered from a second set defeat to beat University of the Philippines, 25-22, 23-25, 26-24, 25-14, and clinch the second semifinal berth in the men’s division.

Paul Bugaoan and Peter Quiel fired 15 hits apiece while Redijohn Paler added 13 points as the Tams joined the unbeaten Ateneo Eagles (6-0) in the Final Four with a 5-1 mark.

San Beda, meanwhile, kept its slim semis hopes alive as it repulsed St. Benilde, 25-23, 25-15, 25-22, in the other match for joint fifth with UST at 2-3, half-a-game behind fourth-running La Salle (3-3).

UP and St. Benilde are out of it all with 1-5 and 0-5 slates, respectively.

The post Lady Bulldogs blast Bombers, gain PVL semifinals playoff appeared first on The Manila Times Online.

View on Website

Zubiri: Anti-hazing law never banned hazing. Now we will

1 hour ago
Atio hazing outrageSenator Juan Miguel Zubiri wants a total ban on hazing, and is seeking the repeal of Republic Act No. 8049, or “An Act Regulating Hazing and other forms of Initiation Rites in Fraternities, Sororities, and other Organizations and providing penalties thereof,” in favor of a new law which will prohibit hazing altogether. In an interview […]
View on Website

CNN Philippines:
Uber CEO apologizes to Londoners: 'We got things wrong'

Twitter - cnnphilippines

1 hour ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
John Lloyd Cruz has gone viral again, but this time, in a calmer and sweeter setting with Ellen Adarna.

Twitter - cnnphilippines

1 hour ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
What can the OKC Thunder expect from the arrival of Carmelo Anthony? @YoungNBA shares his thoughts.…

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
.@charlestiu takes a look at the top four teams so far in Season 80 of UAAP men's basketball.…

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
Stop and Go Coalition calls off the transport strike it scheduled for September 26.

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe calls snap election

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

China’s cyber watchdog imposes top fines on tech firms over censorship

2 hours ago
China’s cyber watchdog has handed down maximum penalties to several of the country’s top tech firms, including Tencent Holdings Ltd, Baidu Inc and Weibo Corp for failing to properly censor online content.
View on Website

CNN Philippines:
Reports: Melo leaving New York for OKC

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
.@charlestiu talks about the 2017 PBA Governors' Cup quarterfinals.

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
.@charlestiu examines the key players for the Philippines in the FIBA Asia Champions Cup.

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

KL balks as Cayetano issues ASEAN Chair’s statement vs attacks on Myanmar troops, but omitting mention of Rohingyas

2 hours ago
The plight of the Rohingyas, the Muslim minority fleeing persecution in Myanmar, has caused a rare split within the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, with member state Malaysia issuing a position contradicting the statement issued by this year's chair of the regional bloc, the Philippines.
View on Website

CNN Philippines:
.@charlestiu: UP is playing really good basketball | #CNNPHSportsDesk live

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
.@charlestiu: There are so many weapons for the Ateneo Blue Eagles | #CNNPHSportsDesk live

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
.@charlestiu thinks the Barangay Ginebra-San Miguel series will be a really good match | #CNNPHSportsDesk live…

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
.@charlestiu on Isaiah Austin: He just changes shots around the basket | #CNNPHSportsDesk live

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
.@charlestiu on Carl Bryan Cruz: He obviously fits the system of the Philippine national team | #CNNPHSportsDesk

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
.@charlestiu: Kiefer Ravena is playing at a high level right now for the Philippines | #CNNPHSportsDesk live…

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
Catch @micohalili now on Sports Desk. Live streaming: #CNNPHSportsDesk

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
Senator Lacson suspends hearing until further notice | LIVE

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

ANC OnTheMoney:
What Do Kids Think of Credit Cards?

Twitter - ANC_OnTheMoney

2 hours ago

View on Website

CNN Philippines:
Aegis Juris members were involved in a Manila Hotel brawl last year.

Twitter - cnnphilippines

2 hours ago

View on Website

Plastic surgery booms in China amid new wealth
ABS-CBN - Business

3 hours ago

Plastic surgery is booming in China, fuelled by rising incomes, growing Western influences, and the imperative of looking good on social media.

View on Website

Miguel R. Camus (RT Inquirer Business):
Corruption again @inquirerdotnet

Twitter - InquirerBiz

3 hours ago

View on Website

Read More