The latest news stories from the major news organizations in Cebu and Manila in the Philippines, the US and other countries.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

February 9, 2009 Major News Stories

Govt calls for multi-sectoral job summit

The government has called on 200 leaders to participate in a multi-sectoral job summit on Monday to help government and industries cope with the impact of the global economic downturn on the country's labor force. A top government official had earlier warned that some 800,000 Filipinos are in danger of losing their jobs this year as the global economic slowdown hits the export sector.

8 illegal recruiters to Canada arrested

The Presidential Task Force Against Illegal Recruitment chaired by Vice President Noli de Castro has arrested eight persons for recruiting factory workers to Canada without authorization from the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA).

OFWs benefit from NZ dairy industry

18 Legacy Group employees charged

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) filed 116 counts of falsification of public documents and two counts of false statements against 18 employees and agents of four rural banks under the Legacy Group, which collapsed over highly questionable investment schemes.

Legacy banks faked borrowers - BSP

OPEC to cut output, Iraqi exec predicts

Iraq's oil minister on Saturday predicted that OPEC will cut production in March, and said that the price of a barrel of crude should not be less than 70 dollars.

CHED asks schools to hold off tuition hikes

Cebu ready for random drug tests

Villar warns of Charter change 'decoy'

Senator Manny Villar has warned that the plan to amend the economic provisions of the Constitution could be simply a "decoy" that would eventually lead to the complete overhaul of the country's fundamental law.

Miriam:  Mike's testimony via deposition

The head of the Senate panel investigating the alleged rigging of bids for World Bank-funded road projects in the country is bent on hearing the testimony of First Gentleman Jose Miguel "Mike" Arroyo, one of several personalities named by the World Bank in its report.

Show real proof vs Mike Arroyo

Pimentel: Ban blacklisted firms in RP

Senate Minority Leader Aquilino Pimentel on Saturday proposed in Senate Bill No. 3036 that construction firms blacklisted by international funding agencies for corrupt practices be permanently banned from participating in infrastructure projects of the government.

Arroyo got 'tired for nothing' in US

President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo did not embarrass herself or the nation when she rushed to an event in the US in a bid to personally meet US President Barrack Obama, a staunch ally in the Senate said on Sunday.

Hillary agreed to visit RP - Palace exec

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has accepted President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's invitation to visit the Philippines, a Malacañang official said Sunday.

SC reverses Ombuds, case vs. mayor 

Civilians, PNP and AFP encircle kidnappers

Police, military and 600 armed civilians have set up a loose cordon around the southern jungles where al-Qaeda-linked Abu Sayyaf militants are holding three kidnapped Red Cross workers.

Sulu vice gov meets ICRC kidnappers 

A government negotiator has held a second meeting with kidnappers holding Italian, Swiss, and Filipina Red Cross workers.

$10M demanded for ICRC workers' release 

A ransom of between $5 million and $10 million has been demanded for the release of three workers of the International Committee of the Red Cross, the MILF claimed Sunday.

Abducted midwife is free in Basilan

Eleazar Gumera, abducted midwife from Lamitan City, is free from his captors and is now in a headquarters of the Philippine Marines in Basilan province.

Time to travel: Room rates, air fares down

84 killed in deadliest Australian wildfires

Towering flames razed entire towns in southeastern Australia and burned fleeing residents in their cars as the death toll rose to 84 today, making it the country's deadliest fire disaster.

Bomb blast kills 4 in Afghanistan

A remote-controlled bomb exploded in Afghanistan's southern province of Helmand Sunday, killing four people, including two US nationals.

Yemen releases 170 al-Qaeda suspects

'Slumdog' wins top screenwriting honor

Rags-to-riches drama "Slumdog Millionaire" continued its sweep through the Hollywood movie industry awards, on Saturday winning top honors for an adapted screenplay.

Whitney makes triumphant comeback 

Lunar eclipse visible Monday

Moon worshippers will have something to be excited about as the first lunar eclipse of the year will be visible in the country tomorrow, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said.  The penumbral lunar eclipse will start when the moon enters penumbral shadow of the earth at 8:36 pm Monday and will end at 12:39 am of the next day.  According to the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the Feb. 9 lunar eclipse will be the first of four this year. The next penumbral lunar eclipses will be on July 7 and August 6. The first three will also be penumbral while the last on Dec. 31 will be a partial lunar eclipse where a part of the moon will pass the earth's umbra, or the part where the Earth completely blocks the Sun.

Study hints at how colors affect behavior

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