This weekend, GMA Network proudly brings its biggest primetime stars - bannered by Box-office King Sen. Ramon "Bong" Revilla Jr., Primetime Queen Marian Rivera, and two-time Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) Best Actor Dingdong Dantes - to Cebu to join in this year's celebration of the Sinulog Festival.

On Friday (January 18), Marian, who is also FHM's cover girl for the magazine's 150th issue, will be joined by the rest of the Temptation of Wife cast - Dennis Trillo, Glaiza de Castro, Michelle Madrigal, Bettina Carlos, and Rafael Rosell - in the Kapuso Mall Show at Gaisano Capital-Casuntingan, Mandaue City at 3:00 PM and the Kapuso Night at the Ayala Terraces Cebu at 5:00 PM.

Meanwhile, at 6:00 PM, the festive mood extends all the way to Western Visayas particularly in Kabanlakan City, Negros Occidental with the Sinulog Sa Kabanlakan: Kapuso Fiesta. Set to grace the event are Indio's Alden Richards, Forever's Isabel Oli, comic duo Moymoy Palaboy, and Queen of Soul and Party Pilipinas mainstay Jaya.

Then on Saturday (January 19) at 3:00 PM, appearing together with Dingdong for the Kapuso Mall Show at Gaisano Grand Fiesta Mall, Tabunok are his leading ladies from Pahiram ng Sandali - Max Collins and Lorna Tolentino.

On the same day at 4:00 PM, Pahiram ng Sandali's Kristoffer Martin, Paroa: Ang Kuwento Ni Mariposa's Barbie Forteza, and Forever's Isabel Oli will give Cebuanos an additional treat via the Kapuso Mall Show happening at Gaisano Grand Mall Mactan.

The excitement further intensifies as the cast of the newest Kapuso epicserye Indio featuring Sen. Bong, together with Alden, Jennylyn Mercado, Ehra Madrigal, and Rhian Ramos join Dingdong, Max, and Lorna in another engaging Kapuso Mall Show at SM City Cebu Event Center at 5:00 PM.

On Sunday (January 20), one of the festival's highlights - The Sinulog Grand Parade - which will tour along the major streets of the city, is about to become merrier and all the more vibrant with the Kapuso stars' participation. Sen. Bong and Rhian join the parade from 8:00 AM to 12:00 NN, while Alden and Ehra take over the spot from 1:00 to 6:00 PM.

GMA Central and Eastern Visayas Station Manager, Ms. Ann Marie O. Tan, says: "January is a busy month for us Cebuanos as this is the time of the year when we come together as one with pride for our beloved patron saint, Senyor Sto. Niño. And I am very positive that my fellow Cebuanos are thrilled that GMA Network is joining in the fun and excitement brought about by this one-of-a-kind festival."

The full details of the Network's participation in the 2013 Sinulog Festival will be featured in the two-part special of the weekly travelogue "Let's Fiesta" airing on February 10 and 17 via the Network's regional stations in Bicol, Cebu, Davao, Iloilo, Dagupan, Ilocos, GenSan, Bacolod, and CDO.


Binay, UNA leaders to grace Sinulog sans Aquino Cebu Daily News 7:20 am | Friday, January 18th, 2013

[PHOTO -BINAY IN AMBUSH INTERVIEW BY TV5" It’s called rule of law, not mob rule: this is how Vice President Jejomar Binay describes the intervention of his political alliance in the controversial suspension of Cebu Gov. Gwen Garcia. And if he had the chance, he would quietly take up the matter with President Benigno Aquino III, who, he thinks, can go beyond partisan politics and appreciate the true workings of democracy. PHOTO FROM INTERAKSYON ONLINE]

EVEN without President Benigno Aquino III, Cebu City will still have its share of top national officials as guests for this Sunday’s Sinulog Grand Parade and dance competition.

Ricky Ballesteros, Sinulog Foundation Inc. (SFI) executive director, said he was only waiting for the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB) to coordinate with his office on the visit of Vice President Jejomar Binay.

Despite the President’s disclosure that he wasn’t invited, Rama said his office is still following up on invitations he sent out last Jan. 7 to ranking personalities including President Aquino, Binay, Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and former president Joseph Estrada.

Rama earlier clarified that he sent the invitation to the President last Jan. 5 via a courier company.

He showed reporters a receipt which mentioned that his letter to Aquino was received by a certain Patrick Rafanan the next day.

“Dili ko gusto makig away sa presidente uy. Ngano gud nga dili ta mang imbitar? (I don’t want to fight the President. Why would I not invite him?,” Rama said.

Rama said the president should instead check who among his staffers didn’t receive the invitation letter.

He said several senatorial aspirants also asked his office for VIP passes.

President Aquino told reporters that the invitation may have been buried under the 50,000 invitations his office usually receives in a month.

The President was in Cebu last Wednesday to attend a shipyard opening in Balamban town.

He also introduced senatorial aspirants of the Liberal Party to supporters at the Mandaue City Sports Center.

Mr. Aquino said he couldn’t actually attend the Sinulog because he has a prior commitment to Zamboanga.

He said he didn’t want to disappoint the people there because his visit will mark his first time to be there after the 2010 elections. Correspondent Edison delos Angeles


Gwen taps Corona’s lawyer to contest her suspension Posted on January 6, 2013

Suspended Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia met yesterday with her lead counsel from Manila to prepare for oral arguments to be made before the Court of Appeals on Jan. 10.

She met behind closed doors for more than two hours with lawyer Tranquil G.S. Salvador III of the Romulo Mabanta Buenaventura Sayoc & Delos Angeles (Romulo) law firm.

Salvador told reporters later they have a strong case and are confident that the CA will grant their petition for a temporary restraining order on Garcia’s six-month suspension.

“Well yes, we’re ready. We’ll be prepared for the oral argument. Siguro kung mababasa ninyo ang petition, maganda iyong petition,” he said.

(If you read the petition, it’s very good.)

Salvador – best remembered as the spokesman of the defense panel during last year’s impeachment trial of Chief Justice Renato Corona – wouldn’t say what was discussed with his client.

He arrived at the Capitol yesterday morning and was immediately ushered into the Governor’s Office where Garcia has been holed up for 18 days.

The meeting was also attended by her father Deputy Speaker Pablo Garcia, his lawyer-son Congressman Pablo John Garcia and Gwen’s daughter Christina Codilla Frasco.

Frasco, a senior associate at the Romulo law firm, will be part of her mother’s legal team.

The appellate court’s 12th division is composed of Associate Justices Vicente Veloso, Eduardo Peralta Jr., and Aurora Jane Lantion.

Garcia said she trusts her lawyers whom she said have gone “beyond 100 percent” to prepare for Thursday’s hearing in Manila.

“I trust my lawyers, and I trust the law firm itself. It has an impeccable reputation. If you talk about preparation, I think they go even beyond. They walk the extra mile. But then of course, it is all a matter that is subject to the appreciation of the court and so I think it’s also important that we can also lift our eyes up to God and pray,” she said.

“We know very well that this case has gained national attention and I think most Filipinos are looking at this case right now so we pray that justice will prevail,” Garcia said. /Carine M. Asutilla and Patricia Andrea D. Pateña, Correspondents

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

All rights reserved