Vice President Jejomar Binay expressed his concerns regarding the Charter Change, more known as Cha-Cha, in an interview during the Pabahay Caravan in Calapan, Oriental Mindoro. He was quoted saying “While the assurance was made that the amendments will focus only on economic provisions, there is still the chance that it will go beyond it.” Clearly, the second leader of the republic does not believe that the initiative is simply to promote the country’s competitiveness when it comes to economy as House leaders insisted.


He also said that amending the Constitution is not the priority of the President, and “This is purely a congressional initiative,” he added.


Still, the House of Representatives’ committee on constitutional amendments scheduled an October 11 resolution seeking revision of the Constitution’s economic provisions. The Senate and the House of Representatives also agreed last week to deliberate and vote separately on Charter change.


Other proposed reforms are expanding foreign investor roles in the exploration, development and exploration, development and utilization of natural resources, allowing foreign ownership of industrial and commercial lands, liberalization of the practice of profession in accordance with the principle of reciprocity, allowing foreign investment in tertiary education and the extension of the 25 years plus 25 years land lease agreement.Image


In an interview with Senate President Pro Tempore Jinggoy Estrada, who is also the chairman of the Senate committee on labor, employment and human resources development and the joint Congressional Oversight Committee on Labor and Employment, says that “The Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE) should conduct a thorough investigation on the “tragedy” at the Keppel Shipyard in Subic, Zambales where at least six workers were killed and many others were injured after a huge, tons-heavy steel platform in the area collapsed.”


“We must leave no stone unturned in examining all the circumstances behind this horrible incident as well as all the factors that might have contributed to it, and in ultimately determining if there was any lapse in the overall ensuring of safety measures in the said workplace,” the senator added.


“This, even though there are claims that Keppel has been given high marks in safety checks done by authorities especially the Philippine Economic Zone Authority, and that the company is said to be taking full responsibility for the incident and is already investigating this through its safety department.”


“I am calling on DoLE to conduct its own, thorough investigation of this Keppel incident, come up with a detailed report of it at the soonest time possible and ensure that all the victims will be completely attended to,” as the senator expressed his sincere sympathies to the families and loved ones of those who died in the tragic accident.



The Subic Shipyard is an elevated platform that bridged the workers to a 22,650-ton container ship they are repairing at the drydock of Subic Shipyard and Engineering Inc., which is an enterprise managed by Keppel Shipyard Limited in the special economic zone of Barangay Cawag.


Singapore-based Keppel is a legit ship repair and conversion, shipbuilding and offshore engineering firm.


It should be remembered that another Subic shipyard was into the same tragedy in 2009, the Korean Hanjin Heavy Industries and Construction (HHIC). In the inspection, a lot of lapses in and direct violations of safety measures were discovered.

Would you believe if someone tells you that the impeachment of CJ Corona is nothing but a move against the country’s Vice President, Jejomar Binay? A source, who is very close to the VP, said that “Everyone knows that the trial is a power game that has nothing to do with an anti-corruption crusade. If Corona is taken out and (senior Associate Justice Antonio) Carpio becomes chief justice, and with the rest of the justices terrorized, Mar Roxas has the chance to assume the vice presidency soon.”


How? It’s simple. VP Binay led by 730,000 votes against Roxas in last year’s election. Some 3 million Roxas votes were voided by the optical-scan counting machines, which should have wiped out that lead. Roxas believes that Binay has something to do with this and filed an electoral protest to the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET), which is actually the Supreme Court. If indeed CJ Corona is impeached, all the seniors and associate justices will be frightened by the prospect of being impeached or media demonized. That way, Aquino gets to control PET and Roxas’ petition will be fast-tracked, declare him the winner, and ascend to VP.


Everything is being prepared, this source believes, even the public opinion. First, Aquino’s forces removed Ombudsman Mereditas Gutierrez in favor of Justice Conchita Carpio-Morales, cousin of Justice Carpio, Aquino’s favorite justice and whom he will appoint to replace CJ Corona. The new Ombudsman, along with a new member of the Commission on Audit (COA) would demonize Binay, hurling graft cases against him. Meanwhile, Justice Carpio would become the chief justice. Carpio is the founder of the law firm Villaraza Cruz Marcelo & Angangco, Roxas’ electoral protest counsel.

edgardo angara


Aurora Rep. Juan Edgardo Angara proposed a bill requiring Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) recipients to render environment services in exchange of the government program. He cited that “There must be reciprocity in the current Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) program to erase criticisms that the program is just another form of a dole out.”


It can be recalled that the approved 4Ps program is expected to benefit around three million beneficiaries or indigent households in the country. The program is dubbed “lifeline to the poor” because it aims to provide financial assistance amounting to P39.5 billion without any expected return.


But recently, the country is experiencing continuously growing climate change threats. Juan Edgardo Angara, Representative of Aurora believes that it would be more than fitting for 4Ps benefactors to lend a hand in promoting awareness and safeguarding the environment of their respective barangays. With 3 million households working hand in hand with the LGUs and DSWD in cleaning waterways and planting trees, the task will be a lot easier. 

jesse robredo

Jesse Robredo, Secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government, noted that the Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) of local government units (LGUs) had never increased since 1991. Based on the Local Government Code (LGC), a review has to be made after every five-year term. If followed, the first amendment should have taken place in 1996, then in 2001, 2006, and 2011. This would have helped the LGUs to respond promptly to calamities and support a number of development projects.


 “Since it was enacted in 1991, no review has been made yet. There is really a need to amend the code,” says Robredo during a press conference at his Quezon City DILG office.

He also cited that such increase must be based on the LGU officials’ performance.

“It’s better to give more budget to the performing officials and their performance will be the basis of performance challenge fund. It would be unfair to have equal share but unequal performance. There must be reasonable incentive.



from : Trade Union Congress of the Philippines – Home.

Unsolved deaths due to poor justice system: UN

November 25, 2010

FAILURE TO prosecute perpetrators behind media killings and a weak justice system are reasons violence against journalist persists in the country, making it the most dangerous place for media workers in the world, an official of the United Nations (UN) said.

“Every time there’s an act of violence against a journalist that is not investigated is an invitation for more acts to occur,” Frank La Rue, UN special rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression, told a group of Asian journalists during a forum at the Ateneo de Manila University Tuesday, the first anniversary of the so-called Maguindanao massace

Media watchdog Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility (CMFR) has recorded 175 cases of journalist killed since democracy was restored in the country in 1986.

In the same event, Rowena C. Paraan, executive officer of the International Federation of Journalists and National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) safety officer, said only seven cases of media deaths have been solved.

The closed cases, she added, only resulted in the conviction of assassins and not the masterminds.

Mr. La Rue noted rising incidents of violence against journalists around the world, wherein the Philippines topped the list following the massacre of 32 media workers in Maguindanao province on Nov. 23, 2009.

The media workers covered a group that would file nomination papers of then Buluan vice-mayor Esmael G. Mangudadatu for governor. He was up against then Datu Unsay mayor Andal U. Ampatuan, Jr., the principal suspect.

“Every time a journalist is attacked, democracy is also being attacked. In my report this October, I mentioned the importance of the protection of the journalists around the world in any situation and in any country,” he said.

Describing media killings in the Philippine as “very tragic,” Mr. La Rue added: “Every journalist is a servant of the population because he or she is transferring information to the public. Every journalist deserves to be protected by the state, and every case of violence needs to be investigated and punished.”

CMFR’s Melinda Quintos de Jesus, also speaking in the same forum, said the trend of media killing is alarming.

“Because no one gets punished, there can be no solution and the number of the fallen increases. And statistics have a way of weakening the political will for reform and mute the anger over the state of things,” she said.

For her part, Justice Secretary Leila M. de Lima assured journalists that media killings will be handled properly under the Aquino administration.

“Rest assured that you will never find greater respect and recognition for power that media wields than under this administration,” she told members of the NUJP during their 7th Congress at the Ateneo de Manila University yesterday.

She admitted that pinning down the perpetrators of media killings will not be easy.

“The Maguindanao massacre trial, for instance, is a very complicated case involving 196 accused, a number of whom remain influential and powerful even while they remain under custody,” she said.

Liaison for prosecutors

Meanwhile, Ms. de Lima has named Justice Undersecretary Francisco F. Baraan III a liaison for prosecutors handling the massacre trial.

Mr. Baraan’s designation as supervising undersecretary for the prosecution panel — both government and private — in the trial was contained in a one-page department order issued Nov. 22 and released yesterday.

“Usec. Baraan shall regularly meet with the prosecution panel, attend case briefings and make appropriate recommendations for the efficient prosecution of cases,” the department order, which was effective immediately, read.

In earlier interviews, Ms. de Lima said the appointment of a supervising undersecretary is an affirmation of her commitment to hasten the trial and see the prosecution of the accused. — Darwin T. Wee with inputs from NRM







One Cebu Party, the ruling party in Cebu promised Gibo Teodoro a mil of its 1.8 M voters during his two-day sortie. Suffice it to say that the leaders of the region have called their home Gibo County. It is already confirmed by the Governor of Cebu, Gwendolyn Garcia and the Secretary-General of the group, Rep Pablo John Garcia. Once again, One Cebu have proven that they deserve the tag ‘One’ for they are truly one not only in words but in decisions like this.

Bogo Mayoralty candidate Mariquita Salimbangon-Yeung also ended the speculations regarding her loyalty. In her city alone, Teodoro was greeted by about 15,000 supporters which were organized by Yeung and her party. The powerful Duranos have also officially indorsed Teodoro and his running-mate Edu Manzano. Lapu-Lapu City Mayor Arturo Radaza did the same, announcing Mactan as Gibo Island.

The Party also gave Teodoro a shirt with print: Hindi Ako Tinanong Sa Survey, which gives justice to his too little-too late SWS survey result.

To further boost the confidence of their chosen party and president- to be, One Cebu Party has also organized a survey between Aprils 9 and 12. This is to be out next week and they are confident that Gibo will lead, thus proving their promise.