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

Monday, August 16, 2010

August 17, 2010 Major News Stories

Shell, Petron, Eastern Petroleum to rollback petroleum prices

Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corp. and Eastern Petroleum Corp. will roll back the prices of their fuel products by P1 per liter effective at midnight Tuesday.

Dengue cases 48% higher than '09—DOH

Dengue cases in the country for the first seven months increased 48 percent compared to figures for the same period last year, the Department of Health said.

Minority to block 2010 barangay polls

The minority bloc in the House of Representatives is against the holding of the barangay (village-level) elections in October this year and vowed to block moves of allies of President Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III in the chamber to push through with it.

Robredo: SK council abolition to end 'divisiveness' in local politics

Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo on Monday reiterated his call for the abolition of the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) or the barangay (village-level) youth council, saying this would end "divisiveness" among the youth entering in politics.

Comelec chief for synchronized village, youth polls

While maintaining the Commission on Elections' "neutral" position on the proposed postponement of the village and youth elections, the poll body's chairman on Monday expressed his personal opinion against holding the elections on October 25.

Two senators want barangay polls to be held in May 2013

TWO SENATORS yesterday pushed for the postponement of barangay (village) and Sangguniang Kabataan (youth council) elections on Oct. 25 and synchronize them instead with the midterm elections on May 2013.

Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile said this will allow P3.4-billion poll budget to be spend on pressing needs such as building additional classrooms and beefing up the calamity fund.

"I am for the synchronization because frequent elections will be too expensive," Mr. Enrile told reporters after the local government committee hearing yesterday. The country last held election in May.

For his part, Senator Juan Miguel F. Zubiri said he will file a bill that will synchronize the barangay with the national elections in 2013.

Comelec eyes P20 billion budget for 2013 midterm elections

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is eyeing as much as P20 billion budget for the 2013 midterm elections, an amount that caught senators by surprise during a Senate hearing on Monday.

Solons insist on putting pictures and names on gov't projects

Defying the order of President Benigno Aquino III, several lawmakers on Monday said they will continue to display their names and even photographs in projects funded by their priority development assistance fund (PDAF) or pork barrel for sake of transparency, and as one of them admits, for reelection purposes.

Provincial Ordinance 93-1: Signs block road to renegotiation

The fate of the urban poor residents of Cebu City living in lots owned by Capitol now hangs on the removal of signs, which Governor Gwendolyn Garcia believes are taunting her.

Document shows DA lot belongs to RP

Occupants of the Department of Agriculture compound yesterday presented an old document from the Bureau of Archives showing that the property belongs to the national government and not to the province of Cebu.

Gwen, 3 others given 15 days to answer mandamus case

The Regional Trial Court has granted Governor Gwendolyn Garcia and three other Capitol officials 15 days extension to answer the civil case for mandamus that Vice Governor Gregorio Sanchez, Jr. has filed against them in relation to the non-renewal of the contracts of his consultants.

New vending policy not yet in full effect

The ambitious policy to limit sidewalk vending to one side of the sidewalk has not yet been fully implemented to give vendors time to adjust to the new policy.

City owes funeral parlor P1.5 million

The Cebu City government was reminded by one of the funeral parlors to settle its obligations amounting to P1.5 million representing the city's burial assistance program to their constituents.

Committee tackles today possible extension of Archua's suspension

The investigation committee handling the case of the 28 lost checks issued to the Cebu City Medical Center is set to discuss today the possibility of extending the preventive suspension order of credit officer Lourdes Archua which expires this Saturday.

Codilla ready to leave command

Cebu City fire marshal Esmael Codilla yesterday said he would be willing to leave his post anytime if his superiors at the Bureau of Fire Protection order him to vacate his position.

DepEd told to have students sing provincial hymn in schools

Cebu Provincial Board Member Julian Daan wants the Department of Education to have students in the province to sing the "Sugbo," the Provincial Hymn during the flag ceremonies.

National ID system revived in House measure

A LAWMAKER has revived the bill proposing the issuance of a national identification (ID) card that will carry vital information of each citizen and resident aliens.

Ex-NCRCom chief blasts 'demotion', faces probe

MANILA, Philippines - Outgoing National Capital Region Command chief Rear Adm. Feliciano Angue on Monday blames his recent "demotion" on a certain group within the Armed Forces of the Philippines that has been "misleading" the new administration with false information.

Gov't eyes peace with MILF rebels within 6 years

by Agence France-Presse
MANILA, Philippines - The Philippines  said on Monday it was optimistic of signing a peace deal with Muslim rebels within 6 years, and indicated it was prepared to offer major concessions to achieve its goal.

Salapuddin now wanted—Basilan police

Former Deputy House Speaker Abdulgani "Gerry" Salapuddin is now a wanted person after eluding arrest on Saturday afternoon, according to police.

Chinese businessman abducted in Cotabato

COTABATO CITY, Philippines - A Chinese businessman was abducted by unidentified armed men in his store in Cotabato City on Monday afternoon. 

NBI willing to turn over Mancao to DOJ, PNP protection

The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) on Monday asked Justice Secretary Leila de Lima to place former Senior Superintendent Cezar Mancao II under the care of the Witness Protection Program (WPP) of the Department of Justice (DoJ).

US donates 4 gunboats to RP police

The United States government donated four gunboats to the Philippine National Police as part of its technical assistance to the national law enforcement agency.

Gov't eyes sale of IBC-13, RPN-9

by By Caroline J. Howard, ABS-CBN News Channel
MANILA, Philippines - The Aquino administration is seriously considering the sale of state-run television stations RPN-9 and IBC-13 within the next 2 years.

Drilon bares midnight deal between IBC 13 and R-II Builders

A senator on Monday bared an alleged midnight deal between the state-run television network, IBC 13 and a construction firm, which is "grossly disadvantageous to the government".

Sen. Marcos questions Aquino's plan to privatize sequestered assets

Only the court, and not the government, can decide whether or not to privatize sequestered assets like television networks IBC 13 and RPN 9, including those alleged ill-gotten wealth by the family of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos, his son and namesake, Senator Ferdinand "Bong-Bong" Marcos Jr. said on Monday.

Sereno takes oath as new SC justice

MANILA, Philippines - Lawyer Lourdes A. Sereno on Monday took her oath as the new associate justice of the Supreme Court, the first to be appointed by President Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III.

Aquino defends controversial EOs

President Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III on Monday stood by his controversial executive orders whose constitutionality are being questioned before the Supreme Court.

Aquino's US trip to focus on job creation

MANILA, Philippines - President Benigno Aquino III's first official trip to the U.S. next month will focus on attracting investors who can create jobs in the Philippines.

Enrile defends Aquino, says "He is not God"

"He is not God," so said Senate President Juan Ponce-Enrile as he defended President Benigno "Noynoy' Aquino III from criticisms over his issuances of a number of executive orders that are now questioned before the court.

Doctors advise Erap to rest after profuse nose-bleeding

MANILA, Philippines - A ruptured blood vessel has caused President Joseph "Erap" Estrada's profuse nose-bleeding over the weekend, his doctor said.

Pulse Asia: Only 52% of Filipinos know about climate change

Even after the country has been hit by devastating tropical cyclones caused by climate change, only 52 percent of Filipinos know what the term "climate change" actually means, the public opinion polling body Pulse Asia said.

Remittances rise 6.9% to $9.1 billion in H1

MANILA, Philippines - Money sent home by overseas Filipinos grew 6.9% in the first half of the year to $9.1 billion, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) reported Monday.

Government may make sin taxes a priority

Should there be a pressing need to collect new taxes in the near term, the imposition of higher taxes on cigarettes would be a priority, President Benigno Aquino III said on Monday.

Atlas Consolidated swings back to profit in H1

MANILA, Philippines - Atlas Consolidated Mining and Development Corp (Atlas) swung back to profit in the first half, aided by sustained demand and higher prices of precious metals in the world market.

Thailand ends emergency rule in 3 provinces

by Agence France-Presse
BANGKOK - The Thai government said Monday it was lifting a state of emergency in three more provinces, but not Bangkok, almost three months after the end of deadly opposition protests in the capital.

UN warns of diseases in Pakistan floods

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — The United Nations (UN) warned Monday that up to 3.5 million children were at risk from water-borne diseases in flood-hit Pakistan and said it was bracing to deal with thousands of potential cholera cases.

Iran says will begin work on new uranium plant in early 2011

TEHRAN, Iran - Iran will begin building its third uranium enrichment plant in early 2011, a top official said, defying world powers who have imposed new sanctions on Tehran for pursuing the sensitive nuclear work.

Holyfield urges Pacquiao, Mayweather to fight

MANILA, Philippines – Five-time heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield has prodded superstar fighters Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather, Jr. to get their act together so that they can finally battle in the ring.

'Mexican boxers are better than Filipinos'

MANILA, Philippines – The cousin of Mexican boxing legend Marco Antonio Barrera declared that fighters from Mexico are better than their Filipino counterparts.

Senator Kiko pushes for live streaming of Senate proceedings

Senator Francis "Kiko" Pangilinan filed Resolution 53, calling for the "live streaming" or broadcasting live over the Internet of Senate proceedings.

NTC to radio stations: comply with OPM order

The government is reminding local radio stations to comply with the long-standing but often ignored requirement of playing at least four locally produced songs every hour.

Vicki Belo faces boycott over Charice's Botox procedure

MANILA, Philippines – A political activist called for a national boycott of all Belo Medical Clinics, Flawless Clinics and Belo beauty products following the much talked about cosmetic procedures done on singing sensation Charice.

Pinoy Big Brother reinvents self in 'Showtime'

MANILA, Philippines - After the success of "Pinoy Big Brother (PBB): Teen Clash of 2010," Big Brother is back on television.

Men who earn less than women more likely to cheat: study

WASHINGTON - Men who earn less than their female partner are more likely to cheat on her, a study published Monday found.


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