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Archive for July, 2013





Senate poised to cut pork barrel by half, says Miriam
Read 1,029 times | Posted on July 31, 2013 @ 5 years ago

THE Senate is poised to cut in half the pork barrel of senators and congressmen for 2014, then further cut in half the reduce the amount by 2015, and thus abolish the pork barrel by 2016. (more…)



Prelate says Aquino’s rejection of Biazon’s resignation ‘illogical’
Read 1,114 times | Posted on July 31, 2013 @ 5 years ago

PRESIDENT Benigno Aquino III’s decision to reject the resignation of top officials of the Bureau Customs, which he chastised for alleged inefficiency, is fundamentally wrong, an archbishop said. (more…)



Two columnists shot dead in Manila
Read 1,086 times | Posted on July 31, 2013 @ 5 years ago

By Center for Media Freedom & Responsibility

TWO newspaper columnists were shot dead on 30 July 2013 in Quezon City in the National Capital Region (NCR). The daughter of one of the slain said that the killing might be work-related, in a rare case of Manila-based journalists being killed. Most of the 131 journalists and media workers killed in the Philippines were base in provinces outside Manila. (more…)



Palace refusal to scrap pork shows Aquino is just as ‘dirty’ as previous regimes – Anakbayan
Read 881 times | Posted on July 31, 2013 @ 5 years ago

President Noynoy Aquino’s refusal to scrap the controversial ‘pork barrel’ in the face of successive revelations of corruption under his administration have led the youth group Anakbayan today to declare him complicit in these scandals.

In the past month, scams related to the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF, more known as the pork barrel), Dept. of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Dept. of Transportation and Communications (DOTC), and the Bureau of Customs (BOC) have been exposed, linking top officials of the Aquino administration.

Days before Aquino’s SONA, a whistle-blower revealed that Janet Lim-Napoles masterminded a scheme to channel at least P10 billion in PDAF to fictitious NGOs (non-government organizations). The monies were then withdrawn from the NGOs’ bank accounts and given personally to Napoles. The latest episode of this corruption saga has involved the name of current Agriculture Secretary Prospero Alcala, who has been accused of allowing the release of P16 million in Dept. of Agriculture funds to another Napoles NGO.

“When it comes to shaming corrupt officials in his SONA, or wrongly attributing corruption as the root of poverty, Noynoy can keep talking all day long. But now that his own Cabinet officials and allied lawmakers have been shown to be just as dirty, he is suddenly mute” noted Vencer Crisostomo, national chairperson of Anakbayan.

“With a new public scam being exposed every week, now should be the perfect time for Aquino to launch a tough campaign to clean up the government. Instead, he refuses to touch even the most obvious of all sources of corruption: the pork barrel” he added.

“Mark our words: no one will be prosecuted and punished for the misuse of billions of pesos in public funds. If ever, only a fall guy or two will be charged in court, and probably not even jailed. No ‘big fish’ will certainly be indicted” concluded the youth leader.



Breastfeeding Pinays Raise Breastfeeding Awareness and Promote Breastfeeding Support
Read 1,181 times | Posted on July 31, 2013 @ 5 years ago

Philippines – 3 August 2013. More than 100 mothers with their babies, children, husbands, families and support system gathered together Saturday to build a breastfeeding nation in “Hakab Na!: A Breastfeeding Mob” held at Rajah Sulayman Park in Malate, with simultaneous gatherings in Davao, Cagayan de Oro and Bacolod. The event is the first of its kind in the Philippines.

Spearheaded by the Facebook Group called Breastfeeding Pinays, the activity seeks to promote women’s right to breastfeed and the importance of providing proper support to breastfeeding mothers. This is consistent with the theme for this year’s World Breastfeeding Week 2013, “Breastfeeding Support: Close to Mothers.”

The campaign is one of the key events in the celebration of August as Breastfeeding Awareness Month. According to Velvet Escario-Roxas, a breastfeeding guru and one of the administrators of the group, the Philippines still lacks the necessary support and benefits for breastfeeding mothers despite the Expanded Breastfeeding Promotion Act of 2009, including implementation of paid lactation breaks, lactation rooms and policies.

“Breastfeeding in this country is a national health crisis,” said Escario-Roxas. “Although breastfeeding rates have steadily gone up over the years through efforts by different government, non-government organizations and medical communities, there is still so much to be done. Forming this online support group of mothers and gathering together is one of our contributions to the cause.”

The activity also aims to remove the stigma of nursing in public. “We want to create a harmonious culture of breastfeeding in the Philippines. We want to encourage mothers to become more confident while breastfeeding in public,” said Benz Co-Rana, founder of [email protected], also an online community of parents that promotes breastfeeding.

“To breastfeed successfully, the mother needs a stronger, well-informed support system from the hospital, the home and the workplace,” stressed Co-Rana who successfully breastfeed her two children until they were two years old. “This is why for this campaign, we have everybody present, not just the mothers. We have the fathers, grandparents—everyone—to emphasize the need to support the breastfeeding mothers, and ultimately help raise a healthy and happy child.”

Breastfeeding Pinays partnered with Kaya Women Empowerment and Support Group, LATCH (Lactation, Attachment, Training, Counseling, Help), Arugaan, [email protected], Tickled Moms, Davao’s Mommy Sense, Cagayan De Oro’s Mommy Bright Side, the Bacolod Mom and Baby Club, and bloggers Jenny Ong (Chronicles of a Nursing Mom) and Eliza Ypon (The Painter’s Wife) in organizing this activity.

The Breastfeeding Pinays Facebook Group seeks to address the need for local community support for breastfeeding mothers. By providing easily accessible and proper information to mothers and their support systems, the Breastfeeding Pinays community has become a lifeline for mothers with breastfeeding problem, questions and issues. Trained peer counselors support the community.

In just six months since its opening in early 2013, the community has grown to more than 3,500 members, with more users joining everyday. Aside from online support, members of the community also conduct small weekly meet-ups to hold “hands-on” learning sessions on hand expression, cup feeding and self-lactation massage. The meet-ups also address breastfeeding challenges, problems and difficulties.



Bayan Muna Rep. Zarate calls for wide-ranging investigation on pork barrel scam
Read 962 times | Posted on July 31, 2013 @ 5 years ago

According to Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate, a wide-ranging investigation into the pork-barrel scam is now becoming more pressing with the alleged involvement of ranking allies of the Aquino administration, particularly from the ruling Liberal
Party.

“It is particularly upsetting that House Appropriations Committee chair Rep. Isidro Ungab was among those identified as beneficiaries of the graft-laden 10-billion peso pork barrel scam. As a stalwart of the Liberal Party and chair of the powerful Appropriations Committee, Rep. Ungab’s being in the list of
beneficiaries of this scandalous wastage of people’s money goes on to show that this scam is as much as a sin of the Aquino administration as it is with those identified with the previous administration,” the solon added.

“That Rep. Ungab claimed to have no knowledge of the scam will not and should not automatically exonerate him from these charges. As the appropriations Committee Chair, the more that he should submit himself to an investigation. It is unsettling that he heads the very committee that will push and defend the existence of the pork-barrel in the 2014 national budget,” he said.

“While I know Rep. Ungab during his days at the Davao City Council, it would be a disservice to Davaoenos if he would be spared from any investigation and penalty, if need be, on account of his current status as a Liberal Party stalwart. I urge for an expeditious probe on this matter by the House of Representatives. The Liberal-party led House leadership should be held accountable to the people,” Rep. Zarate ended.



Fellowships open for 17th Lopez Jaena Community Journalism Workshop on Disaster Reporting in October
Read 818 times | Posted on July 31, 2013 @ 5 years ago

The University of the Philippines College of Mass Communication (UP CMC) will hold the 17th Graciano Lopez Jaena Community Journalism Workshop from October 13 to 19 at the UP College of Mass Communication, Diliman, Quezon City.

Fellowship slots are available for this workshop. Applications are open to full-time print, broadcast and online journalists, as well as selected journalism educators and students.

This year’s workshop will focus on “Media and Disasters: Reporting for Accountability.”

Resource persons from the academe, government and non-government organizations will speak on issues like disaster reporting, disaster-related laws, ethics and investigative reporting.

Since its first workshop in 1985, the Lopez Jaena Community Journalism Workshop has trained hundreds of community journalists. Among the past fellows are Froilan Gallardo, Frank Cimatu, Ilang-ilang Quijano, Jo Clemente, Diosa Labiste, Danny Calleja, Flor Abanto and Maurice Malanes.

Applicants should be currently engaged in the journalism profession with at least two years’ working experience. They should also be below 45 years old. They must submit an application letter; resume; two published/broadcast news reports; a story plan for an investigative report on a disaster; and an endorsement from their editor, local press club president or a Lopez Jaena Community Journalism Workshop alumnus.

Limited slots may be given to senior journalism students. Student applicants are required to submit an application letter, resume, sample works and an endorsement from their professor, department chair or dean.

The fellowship will cover board and lodging. Participants will be billeted inside the UP Diliman campus.

Interested journalists, journalism educators and students may send their application papers to The Project Director, 17th Lopez Jaena Community Journalism Workshop on Disaster Reporting, College of Mass Communication, University of the Philippines, Diliman, Quezon City.



Solon calls for wide-range investigation on pork barrel scam
Read 1,037 times | Posted on July 31, 2013 @ 5 years ago

BAYAN Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate, a wide-ranging investigation into the pork-barrel scam is now becoming more pressing with the alleged involvement of ranking allies of the Aquino administration, particularly from the ruling Liberal Party. (more…)



DILG 10 holds crash course for neophyte elected officials
Read 835 times | Posted on July 31, 2013 @ 5 years ago

By Cheng Ordonez, BWM Editor-in-Chief

THE Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) 10 is conducting a crash course on local governance to some 320 neophyte elected vice mayors and city and municipal elected officials at Dynasty Hotel in Divisoria, here, from July 30 to August 2, 2013.

The crash course has been offered by DILG in two batches: July 30 to 31 batch for those in the areas of Lanao del Norte, Misamis Occidental, Camiguin and Cagayan de Oro City, and Aug. 1 and 2 batch for those in Misamis Oriental and Bukidnon.

DILG 10 director Atty. Rene Burdeos said invited to the “Crash Course on Local Government: Introduction to Local Legislation for City/Municipal Vice Mayors and Sangguniang Panlungsod/Bayan Members” were neophyte or first-timer vice mayors, city and municipal councillors.

Atty. Burdeos said the whole content course is composed of the following: An orientation on the officials’ roles, powers, duties and functions; elements of good governance; parliamentary procedure; planning and budgeting; and quasi-judicial powers.

As this developed, Atty. Burdeos urged the vice mayors, city and municipal councilors, who are participants to the crash course, to recopy the computerized sketches of the bombing suspects now available over various websites and to distribute them in strategic areas in their respective areas of jurisdictions.

“We are helping law enforcement authorities by urging them (participants) to be on the look-out for the suspects in the tragic bombing at Limketkai Center and by making people aware of their presence in their communities, and to immediately report to the nearest police outpost or military camp as soon as they spot them,” Dir. Burdeos said.

The Philippine National Police hierarchy has released on Monday the computerized sketches of three suspects, resulting from the description of witnesses who said that a black bag purportedly containing the bomb was left by one of the suspects in a mono-block chair, which later exploded, killing eight civilians and injuring scores others.



Greenpeace statement on the 2013 State of the Nation Address of President Benigno Aquino III
Read 1,057 times | Posted on July 31, 2013 @ 5 years ago

 Members of "No to Coal Davao" and Greenpeace march at the historic Freedom Park in Davao City as part of the Global Day of Action Against Coal.


Members of “No to Coal Davao” and Greenpeace march at the historic Freedom Park in Davao City as part of the Global Day of Action Against Coal.

WE are gravely disappointed with the President’s statement on energy. While he claims support for renewable energy, he contradicts himself by poking fun at the same. He continues to use antiquated arguments that the coal industry uses to slam renewable energy, most of which have been already debunked. His preference for coal is clear despite the overwhelming scientific evidence of its contribution to climate-changing greenhouse gas emissions. (more…)

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