SUMMER-LIKE HEAT BACK IN PH FOR A FEW DAYS - PAGASA

Expect a “summer-like” weather for the next few days as the tropical storm with the international name “Hagibis” moves farther away from the country, making its way to China. But even as it barely grazed the Philippine area of responsibility, the tropical storm’s enhancement of the southwest monsoon, locally known as “habagat,” is still anticipated to bring rains over parts of Northern Luzon, according to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa). Weather forecaster Buddy Javier said that as of Sunday, Pagasa has not monitored the development of a possible low pressure area. “We will experience a monsoon break when the storm loses its effect on the ‘habagat’,” Javier told the Philippine Daily Inquirer, adding that the break could last at least two days or for as long as there is no weather disturbance that will enhance the southwest monsoon. The tropical storm is anticipated to lose its effect once it dissipates or makes landfall. In a monsoon break, skies are generally clear and warm temperatures are experienced with isolated rainshowers, according to Javier. “It could feel like it’s summer again, but not as hot. This could be felt for a few days,” Javier said. Metro Manila felt a taste of the monsoon break on Sunday, with the highest temperature of 33.5 degrees Celsius recorded at 1:50 p.m. at the Science Garden. As of 2 p.m. on Sunday, Tuguegarao City recorded a temperature of 38 degrees; Cabanatuan City, 33.6 degrees; and Cavite, 33.5 degrees.

ALSO: ‘Habagat’ to bolster rains in Northern Luzon

MANILA, Philippines—With the rainy season underway, the southwest monsoon is expected to bolster the rains in Northern Luzon, the weather bureau said. In its weather advisory, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration said that the southwest monsoon, known locally as “Habagat,” would bring light to moderate rains over Batanes, Calayan and Babuyan group of islands. Pagasa added that the regions of Ilocos and Cordillera and the provinces of Bataan and Zambales would also experience the same precipitation. THIS IS THE FULL REPORT.

ALSO: Government lawyers block Arroyo’s bid to personally register as Pampanga voter

The motion of former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to leave from detention so she can be able to register as a voter in her hometown is being opposed by prosecutors. Arroyo who is a native of Lubao, Pampanga has been confined at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center (VMMC) as she was in hospital arrest due to a plunder case filed against her by the government. Plunder, which is a non-bailable offense, was filed against the former President due to allegations that she along with former top officials of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) conspired in the anomalous use of the P366-million corporate funds.
The allegation was that the former President and her cohorts allegedly converted the funds into an intelligence funds and was spent dubiously. The questions of security and physical safety of Arroyo was the contention of Prosecutors Gidget Rose Duque and Julieta Niduaza since she has to be regularly checked by her doctors at the hospital due to her spine and weight loss problem. The counsels of Arroyo in the persons of Jose Flaminiano, Lawrence Arroyo and Jesi Howard Lanete have made an assurance that she will endure the land travel from the hospital fo the Commission on Elections office in Lubao and is willing to shoulder all the expenses, including the cost of fuel and meals of her police escorts. Defense lawyers said Arroyo has received a notice from the election officer of Lubao that her name has been deactivated as a registered voter for failing to vote in her province in the past two elections. The camp of Arroyo wanted to avail of the biometrics which is now being required by the Comelec so she can be able to vote in the next elections. READ MORE...

ALSO: ‘P2 rice price hike only temporary’

The P2 increase in rice prices is only temporary, a Palace official assured the public yesterday. Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. of the Presidential Communications Operations Office said prices of rice will stabilize soon. Coloma said the Department of Agriculture and the National Food Authority (NFA) attributed the hike in rice prices to “market forces” or the law of supply and demand. “They believe that once harvest and planting season start, the supply of rice will increase and push down prices,” he said over state-run dzRB. The NFA had earlier said that rice prices would go up by P1 to P2 per kilo during the lean months of July to September. The average retail price of well-milled rice is P42.19 per kilo. Regular milled-rice is priced at P38.93 per kilo. NFA spokesman Rex Estoperez said 800,000 metric tons (MT) of rice imports intended to increase domestic buffer stock will arrive on schedule. He said two Vietnamese state-run firms are shipping to NFA warehouses between May and August well-milled white rice. As of June 9, some 459,400 MT of rice have been delivered to different NFA depositories. Estoperez said the balance of 340,000 MT would be delivered before the end of August. The NFA sells regular-milled rice for P27 per kilo and well-milled rice for P32 per kilo to prevent spikes in domestic prices. The country’s rice stock remains sufficient for 74 days as of May, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority. Stocks in households remain sufficient for 39 days and those held in commercial warehouses for 21 days. Stocks held in NFA depositories would last for 14 days. Of the present rice stock inventory, 52.6 percent is held in households, 28.9 percent in commercial warehouses and 18.5 percent in NFA depositories. THIS IS THE FULL REPORT.

ALSO: Prepare for El Niño, DOST urges agencies, LGUs in Davao

Rice shortage feared as dry spell looms closer. A store helper in a public market in Sampaloc, Manila on Sunday June 15, 2014, seems oblivious to a looming rice supply shortage due to the approaching El Niño phenomenon. The Department of Science and Technology over the weekend exhorted government agencies and local government units in the Davao region to make the proper preparations for El Niño, including a possible post-El Niño event. DOST Davao regional director Anthony Sales said El Niño could be damaging to the productivity of the region's farms and plantations, state-run Philippines News Agency reported. “There should be strategy in place now,” he said, adding local leaders must ensure access to water for areas that will be affected by the drought. He also urged farmers to plant drought-resistant varieties. On the other hand, Sales stressed LGUs should be ready with water resurgence after the El Niño. He said water resurgence could even spread plant diseases, particularly the Fusarium Wilt (Panama disease) that affects bananas. For her part, DOST Undersecretary and PAGASA acting deputy administrator Flaviana Hilario noted the Davao region is highly vulnerable to El Niño, based on events in the last 15 years. “It does not mean that if we have an El Niño, we will have no rain... We still do not know (El Niño's) strength,” Hilario said. She noted Tropical Cyclone Ondoy, which occurred during the El Niño in 2009, dumped rain on the country. Earlier, Science Secretary Mario Montejo said El Niño may be felt as early as June. READ MORE...

(ALSO) FEATURE STORY: Son asked General Ver: Dad, did you kill Ninoy?

IT WAS a question everybody had long wanted to ask of Gen. Fabian Ver, former chief
of staff of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos, but was afraid to do so. In an interview with ABS-CBN News, Jun Camcam, eldest son of banker Edna Camcam, the common-law wife of the general, recalled when he threw this question one afternoon to his father, who was then living in exile in Mannheim, Germany. The family fled the country at the height of the four-day People Power Revolution in February 1986. Jun, then a fresh graduate of New York University, boldly confronted his father of the question that had been nagging him sometime in 1988. “Dad, everybody is saying you killed Ninoy,” Jun told his father over merienda. “Did you kill him?” He was looking straight into his father's eyes, he said. Ninoy was former Sen. Benigno Aquino Jr, whose assassination on August 21, 1983 triggered massive demonstrations against the Marcos administration, culminating in his ouster via the February 1986 revolution. Jun got an answer just as quick as he asked for it, he said. “How could you even say that?” Ver shot back. “He was my brother at the University of the Philippines. And we were friends.” Jun recalled their years in exile near Mannheim Germany on the eve of the EDSA's 28th year celebration. He spent many Christmases & birthdays reuniting with his exiled parents in Germany, commuting between New York & Frankfurt, he said. Ver was said to have told his son that Ninoy was in fact given special treatment while in military detention. "I gave him almost everything he asked for--special food, special visits by family & friends. We even allowed him to get out from time to time,” the son quoted the father as telling him. “We allowed him to attend the birthday party of [Ramon] Monching Mitra at a Makati condominium on condition that he would be given military escorts and be brought back by midnight.” And when Ninoy's health deteriorated, Ver reportedly said: "I pleaded his case to President Marcos while Ninoy was at the Heart Center: 'Sir, Ninoy needs immediate medical attention, and we need to send him to Boston for his doctors. Mr President, if anything happens to Ninoy in our jail the people will blame us, if he dies on our watch, the people will point the finger at us." Marcos agreed, and he and former First Lady Imelda Marcos raced against time sending Ninoy to the United States. “And they quickly sent Ninoy packing for Boston. He left in such a hurry that the general borrowed some US dollars from my mother to use for Ninoy's plane ticket and allowance,” Jun said. Ver asked his son: "So why would I protect Ninoy and, in effect, protect the President & myself, but only to later endanger it, by ordering his death, in broad daylight?" CONTINUE READING...


Read Full Stories here:

Summer-like heat back in PH for a few days—Pagasa

MANILA, JUNE 16, 2014 (INQUIRER)  By Jeannette I. Andrade Philippine Daily Inquirer 7:28 pm | Sunday, June 15th, 2014


Filipino men take a bath along a street in Manila, Philippines. AP

MANILA, Philippines — Expect a “summer-like” weather for the next few days as the tropical storm with the international name “Hagibis” moves farther away from the country, making its way to China.

But even as it barely grazed the Philippine area of responsibility, the tropical storm’s enhancement of the southwest monsoon, locally known as “habagat,” is still anticipated to bring rains over parts of Northern Luzon, according to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa).

Weather forecaster Buddy Javier said that as of Sunday, Pagasa has not monitored the development of a possible low pressure area.

“We will experience a monsoon break when the storm loses its effect on the ‘habagat’,” Javier told the Philippine Daily Inquirer, adding that the break could last at least two days or for as long as there is no weather disturbance that will enhance the southwest monsoon.

The tropical storm is anticipated to lose its effect once it dissipates or makes landfall.

In a monsoon break, skies are generally clear and warm temperatures are experienced with isolated rainshowers, according to Javier.

“It could feel like it’s summer again, but not as hot. This could be felt for a few days,” Javier said.

Metro Manila felt a taste of the monsoon break on Sunday, with the highest temperature of 33.5 degrees Celsius recorded at 1:50 p.m. at the Science Garden.

As of 2 p.m. on Sunday, Tuguegarao City recorded a temperature of 38 degrees; Cabanatuan City, 33.6 degrees; and Cavite, 33.5 degrees.

According to the Pagasa’s forecast for Monday (June 16), the cyclone-enhanced “habagat” is expected to spawn occasional rains in the Batanes group of Islands, the Calayan and Babuyan groups of Islands as well as in the regions of the Ilocos and the Cordillera.

Mindanao will have cloudy skies with light to moderate rainshowers and thunderstorms as an effect of the intertropical convergence zone while Metro Manila and the rest of the country will be cloudy to partly cloudy with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms.

With a gale warning still in effect, the weather bureau also cautioned fishing boats and other small sea craft against venturing into the northern and western seaboards of Northern Luzon.

Sea conditions in the areas will be rough to very rough and waves that could reach up to 4.5 meters are expected because of strong to gale force winds associated with the surge of the enhanced “habagat.”

‘Habagat’ to bolster rains in Northern Luzon By Bong Lozada INQUIRER.net
3:23 pm | Sunday, June 15th, 2014


INQUIRER FILE PHOTO


MANILA, Philippines—With the rainy season underway, the southwest monsoon is expected to bolster the rains in Northern Luzon, the weather bureau said.

In its weather advisory, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration said that the southwest monsoon, known locally as “Habagat,” would bring light to moderate rains over Batanes, Calayan and Babuyan group of islands.

Pagasa added that the regions of Ilocos and Cordillera and the provinces of Bataan and Zambales would also experience the same precipitation.

FROM THE TRIBUNE

Government lawyers block Arroyo’s bid to personally register as Pampanga voter Written by Alvin Murcia Monday, 16 June 2014 00:00


FORMER PRESIDENT GLORIA ARROYO

The motion of former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to leave from detention so she can be able to register as a voter in her hometown is being opposed by prosecutors.

Arroyo who is a native of Lubao, Pampanga has been confined at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center (VMMC) as she was in hospital arrest due to a plunder case filed against her by the government.

Plunder, which is a non-bailable offense, was filed against the former President due to allegations that she along with former top officials of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) conspired in the anomalous use of the P366-million corporate funds.

The allegation was that the former President and her cohorts allegedly converted the funds into an intelligence funds and was spent dubiously.

The questions of security and physical safety of Arroyo was the contention of Prosecutors Gidget Rose Duque and Julieta Niduaza since she has to be regularly checked by her doctors at the hospital due to her spine and weight loss problem.

The counsels of Arroyo in the persons of Jose Flaminiano, Lawrence Arroyo and Jesi Howard Lanete have made an assurance that she will endure the land travel from the hospital fo the Commission on Elections office in Lubao and is willing to shoulder all the expenses, including the cost of fuel and meals of her police escorts.

Defense lawyers said Arroyo has received a notice from the election officer of Lubao that her name has been deactivated as a registered voter for failing to vote in her province in the past two elections.

The camp of Arroyo wanted to avail of the biometrics which is now being required by the Comelec so she can be able to vote in the next elections.

In the event that Arroyo failed to comply with the submission of her biometrics date she can’t vote or seek elective position or seek a second term in the next elections.

But the government lawyers said that although it is the right of the former President to exercise her right of suffrage they suggested the accused to instead request the Comelec to send a poll officer to conduct her voter’s reactivation and biometrics procedure than motoring for several hours to Pampanga Comelec.

In a note written and signed before the Sandiganbayan clerk of court after the hearing on Arroyo’s motion, defense lawyers signified: “We agree to the above proposed arrangement of the prosecutors.”

The camp of Arroyo has also been seeking the granting of bail for the former President but it was always being denied by the anti-graft court although her co-accused in the PCSO fund mess have been allowed to post bail.

Earlier, Arroyo was cleared by Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales of her involvement in the P728-million fertilizer fund scam.

On a May 2, 2014 resolution signed by Morales it said that there is no factual or legal basis to pin down Arroyo in the alleged multi-million scam.

It also cited the fact the lack of evidence that would clearly show the former President has a hand in the release of the fund.

The resolution recommending the dismissal of the case against Arroyo was submitted to Morales on May 8, 2013 but Morales approved the recommendation only on May 2, 2014.

As early as 2011, a year after Arroyo stepped down as President of the Republic, the Ombudsman has recommended the dismissal of the case against her but it hit a snag after a reinvestigation was conducted due to another plunder complaint lodged before the Ombudsman.

The decision to clear Arroyo of involvement in the fertilizer scam was the fourth such case that has been junked by the anti-graft body against the former president.

The Ombudsman earlier also dismissed the complaint against Arroyo and her sone, Camarines Sur Rep. Diosdado Ignacio “Dato” Arroyo, for plunder and violations of Republic Act 3019 (Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act), in connection with the Libmanan-Cabusao Dam and Skybridge 1 and 2 projects in Camarines Sur.

FROM PHILSTAR

‘P2 rice price hike only temporary’ By Delon Porcalla (The Philippine Star) | Updated June 16, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The P2 increase in rice prices is only temporary, a Palace official assured the public yesterday.

Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. of the Presidential Communications Operations Office said prices of rice will stabilize soon.

Coloma said the Department of Agriculture and the National Food Authority (NFA) attributed the hike in rice prices to “market forces” or the law of supply and demand.

“They believe that once harvest and planting season start, the supply of rice will increase and push down prices,” he said over state-run dzRB.

The NFA had earlier said that rice prices would go up by P1 to P2 per kilo during the lean months of July to September.

The average retail price of well-milled rice is P42.19 per kilo. Regular milled-rice is priced at P38.93 per kilo.

NFA spokesman Rex Estoperez said 800,000 metric tons (MT) of rice imports intended to increase domestic buffer stock will arrive on schedule.

He said two Vietnamese state-run firms are shipping to NFA warehouses between May and August well-milled white rice.

As of June 9, some 459,400 MT of rice have been delivered to different NFA depositories.

Estoperez said the balance of 340,000 MT would be delivered before the end of August.

The NFA sells regular-milled rice for P27 per kilo and well-milled rice for P32 per kilo to prevent spikes in domestic prices.

The country’s rice stock remains sufficient for 74 days as of May, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority.

Stocks in households remain sufficient for 39 days and those held in commercial warehouses for 21 days. Stocks held in NFA depositories would last for 14 days.

Of the present rice stock inventory, 52.6 percent is held in households, 28.9 percent in commercial warehouses and 18.5 percent in NFA depositories. –With Czeriza Valencia

FROM GMANEWS NETWORK

Prepare for El Niño, DOST urges agencies, LGUs in Davao May 17, 2014 7:26am


Rice shortage feared as dry spell looms closer Uploaded on 11:59AM Jun 15
A store helper in a public market in Sampaloc, Manila on Sunday June 15, 2014, seems oblivious to a looming rice supply shortage due to the approaching El Niño phenomenon. Danny Pata

The Department of Science and Technology over the weekend exhorted government agencies and local government units in the Davao region to make the proper preparations for El Niño, including a possible post-El Niño event.

DOST Davao regional director Anthony Sales said El Niño could be damaging to the productivity of the region's farms and plantations, state-run Philippines News Agency reported.

“There should be strategy in place now,” he said, adding local leaders must ensure access to water for areas that will be affected by the drought.

He also urged farmers to plant drought-resistant varieties.

On the other hand, Sales stressed LGUs should be ready with water resurgence after the El Niño.

He said water resurgence could even spread plant diseases, particularly the Fusarium Wilt (Panama disease) that affects bananas.

For her part, DOST Undersecretary and PAGASA acting deputy administrator Flaviana Hilario noted the Davao region is highly vulnerable to El Niño, based on events in the last 15 years.

“It does not mean that if we have an El Niño, we will have no rain... We still do not know (El Niño's) strength,” Hilario said.

She noted Tropical Cyclone Ondoy, which occurred during the El Niño in 2009, dumped rain on the country.

Earlier, Science Secretary Mario Montejo said El Niño may be felt as early as June.

Intervention programs

The Department of Agriculture (DA) in Davao region is re-surfacing its intervention programs in areas previously affected by El Niño.

Jovita Astilla of the DA regional office, said they are preparing for possible cloud seeding if El Niño occurs.

Astilla said the DA has allocated P2.3 million or equivalent to 50 hours of cloud seeding for Davao City and Davao Oriental, which may be moderately vulnerable to El Niño.

DA is also validating existing crops; providing alternate wetting and drying technology for rice farms and making available provisions of crops resistant to drought. — Joel Locsin /LBG, GMA News

FROM ABS-CBN

Son asked General Ver: Dad, did you kill Ninoy? By Gerry Lirio, ABS-CBN News Posted at 02/25/2014 4:27 AM | Updated as of 02/25/2014 6:28 PM


Jun Camcam (left, in dark blue shirt) with younger brother Jonathan

IT WAS a question everybody had long wanted to ask of Gen. Fabian Ver, former chief of staff of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos, but was afraid to do so.

In an interview with ABS-CBN News, Jun Camcam, eldest son of banker Edna Camcam, the common-law wife of the general, recalled when he threw this question one afternoon to his father, who was then living in exile in Mannheim, Germany. The family fled the country at the height of the four-day People Power Revolution in February 1986.

Jun, then a fresh graduate of New York University, boldly confronted his father of the question that had been nagging him sometime in 1988.

“Dad, everybody is saying you killed Ninoy,” Jun told his father over merienda. “Did you kill him?” He was looking straight into his father's eyes, he said.

Ninoy was former Sen. Benigno Aquino Jr, whose assassination on August 21, 1983 triggered massive demonstrations against the Marcos administration, culminating in his ouster via the February 1986 revolution.

Jun got an answer just as quick as he asked for it, he said.

“How could you even say that?” Ver shot back. “He was my brother at the University of the Philippines. And we were friends.”

Jun recalled their years in exile near Mannheim Germany on the eve of the EDSA's 28th year celebration. He spent many Christmases & birthdays reuniting with his exiled parents in Germany, commuting between New York & Frankfurt, he said.

Ver was said to have told his son that Ninoy was in fact given special treatment while in military detention. "I gave him almost everything he asked for--special food, special visits by family & friends. We even allowed him to get out from time to time,” the son quoted the father as telling him.

“We allowed him to attend the birthday party of [Ramon] Monching Mitra at a Makati condominium on condition that he would be given military escorts and be brought back by midnight.”

And when Ninoy's health deteriorated, Ver reportedly said: "I pleaded his case to President Marcos while Ninoy was at the Heart Center: 'Sir, Ninoy needs immediate medical attention, and we need to send him to Boston for his doctors. Mr President, if anything happens to Ninoy in our jail the people will blame us, if he dies on our watch, the people will point the finger at us."

Marcos agreed, and he and former First Lady Imelda Marcos raced against time sending Ninoy to the United States. “And they quickly sent Ninoy packing for Boston. He left in such a hurry that the general borrowed some US dollars from my mother to use for Ninoy's plane ticket and allowance,” Jun said.

Ver asked his son: "So why would I protect Ninoy and, in effect, protect the President & myself, but only to later endanger it, by ordering his death, in broad daylight?"

Ver was said to have told his son that he might not have been a saint, but neither was he dumb. "I had nothing to gain and everything to lose by Ninoy's death on Philippine soil," he quoted the father as telling him.

“I know, whatever happens to Ninoy, it would be blamed on us'... and he diverted the conversation: 'Tignan mo yang Plaza Miranda, kami ang pinagbitangan noon.' Of course, I was too young to remember Plaza Miranda, but I listened to him and directed our conversation back to Ninoy,” he said.

“Dad has a habit of answering a simple question with a long lesson in history. You have to be patient. He will eventually get to the answer and in the end, you will have a comprehensive picture of history,” he added.

Consequently, when a news report reached Germany saying that Army Col. Victor Corpuz, a soldier-turned-communist rebel-turned-soldier, had admitted in a letter to a prominent newsman that the communists were behind the Plaza Miranda bombings in 1971, which was also blamed on the Marcos military, Ver felt vindicated. “Look at it, son. The truth will set us free.'"

WHO KILLED NINOY?

So who killed Ninoy? The son had no idea.

After a bible study in 2006 at Edna's house in North Forbes, Aquino's sister, former Sen. Tessie Oreta, asked Marcos's widow and Jun's mother Edna if they knew who killed Ninoy.

The three traded information that ended up in a dead end. Edna asked Tessie: “Why don't you ask your sister in-law? With all the power she had, surely she could wrap up this investigation." The three women are now friends.

Ver died in Bangkok in November 1998 and was later buried in Sarrat, Ilocos Norte, ending years of life on the run since the 1986 revolution.

Marcos died in September 1989; his body has yet to be buried. Aquino's widow died in August 2009, widely regarded as democratic icon.

Now in his 40s and active in Victory church as a lay leader, Jun said he remembered this story only because of the EDSA celebration, hoping that it might trigger a reconciliation among those the revolution has left behind.

"It's time to forgive and bury the hatchet for the sake of our nation and the people,” he said.

“Too much pain has been inflicted on both camps, needlessly. And the recent 'Yolanda' aftermath showing that the wounds of Ninoy are still not healed in the minds of [DILG Secretary] Mar Roxas and the President and [Tacloban City] Mayor Alfred Romualdez. The people are suffering for it,” he said.

“It is my prayer that, in search of truth and justice, that God would bind up these wounds and bring healing and peace and unity to our nation,” he added.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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