PHNO HEADLINE NEWS THIS PAST WEEK
(Mini Reads followed by Full Reports below)

ABIGAIL BINAY: STOP WORD WAR WITH POE[“Senator Poe knows my father [who] loved her father as a true friend. That’s a truth no one can question. If at the end, my father and Senator Poe part ways, there’s nothing we can do. We respect her decision with all our hearts,” she said.]


JUNE 5 ---Makati Representative Abigail Binay. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO/JOAN BONDOC 
Makati Rep. Abigail Binay, a daughter of Vice President Jejomar Binay, on Thursday sued for a truce in the escalating word war between the camps of her father and of Sen. Grace Poe, a fast-emerging presidential candidate in next year’s general elections. “This will accomplish nothing except to inflame the supposed conflict between my father and Senator Poe,” Representative Binay told a news conference at her Makati residence. Reading a prepared statement, Binay said she wished to put a stop to the “heated and emotional” back-and-forth between her father’s allies and Poe that was set off by United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) interim president Toby Tiangco’s questioning on Tuesday the senator’s qualifications to run for higher office. “If Senator Poe so decides to run for President in 2016, my father warmly accepts and respects her decision. It is her right to run for any position,” Binay said in Filipino. “This should not be cause for quarrel or conflict.”  READ MORE...

ALSO: Be strong, Roxas tells Poe on UNA attack


JUNE 5 ---Interior Secretary Mar Roxas and Sen. Grace Poe. FILE PHOTOS
LEGAZPI CITY, Philippines—“Be strong.” That was Interior Secretary Mar Roxas’ advice on Thursday to Sen. Grace Poe following the attack of the opposition United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) on her qualifications and citizenship on Tuesday. Roxas, who calls Poe a “friend,” brushed off the questions raised by UNA against the senator as “technicalities” that had little bearing on her capability to fight corruption and those “enriching themselves by questionable means and deceiving the people”—an apparent dig at the head of UNA, Vice President Jejomar Binay, who is under investigation at the Senate and the Office of the Ombudsman for alleged corruption during his term as mayor of Makati City. He said he regarded Poe a fellow champion of President Aquino’s reform program.

ALSO VP Binay: Like Grace Poe, I was adopted


JUNE 5 ---Vice President Jejomar Binay INQUIRER FILE PHOTO/RAFFY LERMA
“I was also adopted,” said Vice President Jejomar Binay as he washed off his hands on the foundling issue raised by his own ally against Senator Grace Poe. In fact, Binay said Poe was fortunate to have a better life with her adoptive parents—Susan Roces and the later Fernando Poe Jr.— compared to his own experience. “Alam mo na, may bahagi ata ng pananalita ni Mareng Grace tungkol sa pagkakaampon n’ya. Ako, si Jojo Binay, kukutsain ko ‘yong mga ganyan? Hindi si Jojo Binay ‘yan,” the Vice President said in an interview in Biliran Thursday, a copy of the transcript was furnished to reporters by his office this Friday. (Grace made a statement about being adopted. Would I, Jojo Binay, mock that? No, that’s not me.) “E kasi ako, inampon din lang ako ng tiyo ko. Mabuti pa nga si Mareng Grace, gumanda ang buhay n’ya [sa pagkakaampon n’ya]. ‘Yong pagkakaampon sa’kin e ako ang namamalengke, kumukuha ng kaning baboy. [Kaya] hindi si Jojo Binay ang nangdudusta sa mga nang-aapi,” he said. (I was also adopted by my uncle. Grace had it better when she got adopted. Unlike me, I was the one going to the market or collecting hog swill. So I am not the one to degrade those who are oppressed.) Asked if he would raise the issue against Poe should she decide to run for president in 2016, Binay said: “Nandiyan na po ‘yan e. Tingnan na lang [paano mangyayari].” (The issue’s been already raised. We’ll just see.) READ MORE...

ALSO: UNA apologizes, Grace accepts Toby’s apology over residency issue


JUNE 6 ---Sen. Grace Poe
Sen. Grace Poe yesterday welcomed the apology of Navotas Rep. Tobias Tiangco for straining her relationship with Vice President Jejomar Binay and his family by questioning her residency, a requirement in running for higher office. Interviewed in Jaro, Iloilo, where she visited some friends and local government officials, Poe said that she always accepts apologies as long as these are sincere. She also expressed willingness to personally settle the issue with the Binays, saying “they know my number. They can contact me anytime.” Tiangco issued the apology to Poe after the Vice President’s daughter, Makati Rep. Abigail Binay, came out with a statement calling for an end to the word war between Poe and Tiangco, the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) interim president and one of the spokespersons for the Vice President. His statement drew flak and a sharp response from Poe. “I apologize for having caused damage to the friendship of the Poe and Binay families. I will follow Cong. Abby’s advice to stop speaking on the matter as this is an issue for the proper courts to decide,” he said. READ MORE...

ALSO Grace Poe:  I’m not salivating over presidency


JUNE 6 ---GRACE UNDER PRESSURE. Sen. Grace Poe answers questions about her citizenship and eligibility for the presidency a day after the opposition questioned her qualifications for the office. GRIG C. MONTEGRANDE 
Amid growing speculations on her possible role in the 2016 elections, Sen. Grace Poe on Saturday said she was not rushing to announce her political plans as she was still considering a lot of factors, including family life. Asked when she would disclose her candidacy, Poe, who had been figuring strong in presidential polls, said seeking higher office would need a lot of long-term thinking. “Para sa akin hindi po ako talaga, pasensya na po sa gagamitin kong term, pero hindi po kasi ako naglalaway sa pwesto na ’yan, na parang bang kailangan nang mangyari ’yun (Pardon me for the term that I am going to use, but I am not salivating over that position, as if it needs to happen soon),” she said in an interview with radio station dzMM. “All of your energy, your mindset, and even your emotions—everything would be about the campaign and your plans in the next six years,” she added, noting that the presidency was a “privilege” that required huge responsibility. READ MORE...

ALSO: Escudero not part of Liberal Party plan
[If Malacañang will have its way, the ruling LP should be at the helm of Philippine government for 18 years until the reforms Aquino initiated will start bearing fruit.]


JUNE 7 ---The Liberal Party (LP) has begun talking about 18 years of progress and development, beginning with the administration of President Benigno Aquino III and continuing with the potential administrations of now Interior Secretary Mar Roxas and Sen. Grace Poe. Somebody is not being mentioned: Sen. Francis “Chiz” Escudero.
According to Budget Secretary Florencio Abad, an LP stalwart, party members are reluctant to put Escudero in the picture because of his playing the spoiler in the 2010 run of Mr. Aquino and Roxas. Then with a sizable voter backing, Escudero, a supporter of Mr. Aquino, junked Roxas and endorsed Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay in the vice-presidential race. His influence is widely believed to be one of the factors that cost Roxas the election. It is also widely believed that Escudero junked Roxas in 2010 to eliminate him from the 2016 race for Malacañang, which he planned to contest. But now that potential Presidents are positioning for the 2016 race, Escudero is not ready to run. He says it is not yet his time and if he will run it will be only for Vice President. Whose Vice? After 2010, certainly not Roxas’. Abad told the Inquirer in a recent interview that he was “almost certain” that there had been no discussions between the LP’s presumptive presidential standard-bearer, Roxas, and Escudero. READ MORE...

ALSO BULLETIN OPINION:  Is Grace Poe a Filipino?
[Gore Vidal’s diagnosis of the American electoral system of which ours is a copy, seems to explain Hume’s predicament: “Our system of electing politicians to office is rotten and corrupted to its core, because organized money has long since replaced organized and enlightened public opinion.]


JUNE 6 ---by Fr. Rolando V. De La Rosa, OP 
When I read about the wise guys questioning Grace Poe’s citizenship, I involuntarily gave out a colossal yawn. These demolition attempts are becoming boring and tedious. People who are ferociously howling for Poe’s disqualification for the coming election are unwittingly giving her free publicity and forging her image as the underdog. The past elections should teach Poe’s critics a lesson: the bleeding underdog almost always wins. The sympathy vote is not a myth. Making Poe the underdog elevates her in the voters’ eyes and discredits all her political enemies as ruthless, self-righteous, and unforgiving. Today, it is unrealistic to equate ancestry or ethnicity with citizenship. Filipinos are a mixture of varied ethnic groups. Proof of citizenship is a legal requirement for candidacy in an election because of the assumption that only bona fide citizens can manifest patriotism and loyalty to the country. However, there are many politicians and government leaders who are unquestionably Filipinos in ancestry and citizenship but who are neither patriotic nor loyal to the country. In fact, their greed and lust for power make the Philippines a basket case in Asia. On the other hand, there are foreigners who, even if they are not ethnically identified as Filipinos, serve the nation in various ways simply because they have learned to love the country and its people. In fact, many of them voluntarily gave up their foreign citizenship to become naturalized Filipinos. READ MORE...


READ FULL MEDIA REPORTS HERE:

Abigail Binay: Stop word war with Poe


Makati Representative Abigail Binay. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO/JOAN BONDOC

MANILA, JUNE 8, 2015 (INQUIRER) DJ Yap and Leila B. Salaverria @inquirerdotnet June 5th, 2015 - Makati Rep. Abigail Binay, a daughter of Vice President Jejomar Binay, on Thursday sued for a truce in the escalating word war between the camps of her father and of Sen. Grace Poe, a fast-emerging presidential candidate in next year’s general elections.

“This will accomplish nothing except to inflame the supposed conflict between my father and Senator Poe,” Representative Binay told a news conference at her Makati residence.

Reading a prepared statement, Binay said she wished to put a stop to the “heated and emotional” back-and-forth between her father’s allies and Poe that was set off by United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) interim president Toby Tiangco’s questioning on Tuesday the senator’s qualifications to run for higher office.

“If Senator Poe so decides to run for President in 2016, my father warmly accepts and respects her decision. It is her right to run for any position,” Binay said in Filipino. “This should not be cause for quarrel or conflict.”

READ MORE...
Tiangco dug up Poe’s 2012 certificate of candidacy for senator and, showing it to reporters on Tuesday, said she would not satisfy the 10-year residency rule for presidential and vice presidential candidates if she would run for either office next year.

‘I’m qualified’

Hurt by the challenge to her qualifications and the insinuation that she had been dishonest about her residency, Poe fired back on Wednesday, insisting that she was qualified to run, though not saying for what higher office, and that she had been a resident of the Philippines for more than 10 years when she ran for the Senate in 2013.

“Why are they so afraid of me?” said Poe, who topped the 2013 senatorial elections and is now running second to Vice President Binay in presidential polls.

Poe also said she did not believe that Tiangco’s actions had not been approved by Binay, the head of the opposition UNA.

She also questioned the timing of Tiangco’s attack, coming soon after she signed a Senate blue ribbon subcommittee report recommending graft and plunder charges against Vice President Binay over allegations of corruption in Makati during his tenure as the city’s mayor.

Representative Binay noted that the exchange had become personal, as past wounds between the two camps, including the Vice President’s association with Poe’s adoptive father, the late movie actor Ferdinand Poe Jr. (FPJ), had been raised by the parties.

Questions about Poe’s dual citizenship and her background as a foundling, which could complicate her possible candidacy, had also been raised.

The Constitution states that only natural-born Filipinos may rise to the presidency.

Heated and emotional

“This discussion has become truly heated and emotional, which is why it’s not surprising that deep and convoluted versions have come out about what truly happened,” Representative Binay said, referring to her father’s loyalty to Poe’s father. The Vice President served as FPJ’s campaign manager when the actor ran for President in 2004.

“Senator Poe knows my father [who] loved her father as a true friend. That’s a truth no one can question. If at the end, my father and Senator Poe part ways, there’s nothing we can do. We respect her decision with all our hearts,” she said.

But she also suggested that Tiangco’s questions about Poe’s qualifications be raised to the courts.

“A lot of legal matters have surfaced as a result of the statements of (Navotas) Rep. Toby Tiangco. We are convinced that all these issues can only be resolved in one way—through the courts,” she said.

“This should not be a venue for personal arguments between lawmakers and lawyers with varied opinions,” she said.

Binay said it was not her father’s habit to quarrel with anyone through the media over issues that ought to be taken up by the appropriate court or agency.

“It has long been his conviction, and whatever issues have been thrown at him this past year, he has one answer: Let the court, through its clean and fair determination, decide,” she said.

Stand by that report

She also challenged members of the Senate blue ribbon subcommittee, including Poe, to stand by the panel’s partial report.

“If the senators signed this report because they believed every word of it, there’s nothing I can do. But it’s my right to question what’s in the committee report and its basis,” she said.

“As a lawmaker, I have one challenge: I hope they can stand by each and every word of that committee report. Because otherwise, their signatures mean nothing,” she said.

“Like Senator Poe, I’m also my father’s child, and I stand here to say it’s not easy for me to hear every day the accusations against my father. Their motives are as clear as day—for politics and 2016,” she said.

Vice President Binay, who was traveling to Tacloban City on Thursday, declined to comment when asked by reporters about the exchange between his followers and Poe.

When asked what he thought about Poe’s statement that the accusations being hurled against her were not as big as the corruption allegations against him, he said, “It’s OK.”

Asked about Poe’s statement that she was qualified to run, presumably for the presidency, he replied, “Well, we’ll see.”

Asked about Tiangco’s residency attack on Poe, Binay said he had known about that question for some time.

“But I told him not to touch that because I had a good relationship with FPJ. I value our friendship,” the Vice President said.

‘We have no quarrel’

Responding to Representative Binay’s call for peace, Poe said there was no personal quarrel between her and the Binays.

“I just responded to the accusations of their spokespersons since our people have the right to know what kind of person I am, because I hide nothing from them,” Poe said in a text message.

She said she had not forgotten the ties between her family and the Binays, but she had to do what she must.

“I am just being true to my duty,” she said.

An ally of the Vice President, Sen. JV Ejercito, stepped forward Thursday to defend Poe against the attack of another UNA official, JV Bautista, on the senator’s citizenship.

Poe is an adopted daughter of FPJ and actress Susan Roces. She was a foundling whose real parents had never been determined.

Ejercito said he believes Poe is qualified to run for President. “She was born and raised here. She was able to run in 2013,” he said in a telephone interview.

He said as a colleague, he felt compelled to speak up for Poe. He said he disagreed with the use of the foundling issue against her, regardless of who had raised it.

“Even if Senator Poe and I belong to different parties, I feel that the attack has gone overboard. It’s really foul,” he said.

“Whoever is behind this below-the-belt attack against Senator Poe, stating that she is not the real daughter of FPJ, is inhuman,” he said.–With a report from Christine O. Avendaño


INQUIRER

Be strong, Roxas tells Poe on UNA attack Mar Arguelles @inquirerdotnet Inquirer Southern Luzon 3:22 AM | Friday, June 5th, 2015


Interior Secretary Mar Roxas and Sen. Grace Poe. FILE PHOTOS

LEGAZPI CITY, Philippines—“Be strong.”

That was Interior Secretary Mar Roxas’ advice on Thursday to Sen. Grace Poe following the attack of the opposition United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) on her qualifications and citizenship on Tuesday.

Roxas, who calls Poe a “friend,” brushed off the questions raised by UNA against the senator as “technicalities” that had little bearing on her capability to fight corruption and those “enriching themselves by questionable means and deceiving the people”—an apparent dig at the head of UNA, Vice President Jejomar Binay, who is under investigation at the Senate and the Office of the Ombudsman for alleged corruption during his term as mayor of Makati City.

He said he regarded Poe a fellow champion of President Aquino’s reform program.

READ MORE...
Roxas is the presumptive presidential candidate of the ruling Liberal Party next year, but he has not announced his candidacy. He has hinted, however, that he wants Poe as his vice presidential running mate if he will run for President.

Roxas was here for the turnover of 29 patrol jeeps to police units in Albay province.

He merely smiled when Gov. Joey Salceda referred to him as “President” during the turnover ceremony.

Salceda said he was courting the support of the residents of Albay for Roxas because the interior secretary was “clean, smart, hardworking and has a heart and conscience.”


INQUIRER

VP Binay: Like Grace Poe, I was adopted Maila Ager @MAgerINQ INQUIRER.net 9:56 AM | Friday, June 5th, 2015


Vice President Jejomar Binay INQUIRER FILE PHOTO/RAFFY LERMA

“I was also adopted,” said Vice President Jejomar Binay as he washed off his hands on the foundling issue raised by his own ally against Senator Grace Poe.

In fact, Binay said Poe was fortunate to have a better life with her adoptive parents—Susan Roces and the later Fernando Poe Jr.— compared to his own experience.

“Alam mo na, may bahagi ata ng pananalita ni Mareng Grace tungkol sa pagkakaampon n’ya. Ako, si Jojo Binay, kukutsain ko ‘yong mga ganyan? Hindi si Jojo Binay ‘yan,” the Vice President said in an interview in Biliran Thursday, a copy of the transcript was furnished to reporters by his office this Friday.

(Grace made a statement about being adopted. Would I, Jojo Binay, mock that? No, that’s not me.)

“E kasi ako, inampon din lang ako ng tiyo ko. Mabuti pa nga si Mareng Grace, gumanda ang buhay n’ya [sa pagkakaampon n’ya]. ‘Yong pagkakaampon sa’kin e ako ang namamalengke, kumukuha ng kaning baboy. [Kaya] hindi si Jojo Binay ang nangdudusta sa mga nang-aapi,” he said.

(I was also adopted by my uncle. Grace had it better when she got adopted. Unlike me, I was the one going to the market or collecting hog swill. So I am not the one to degrade those who are oppressed.)

Asked if he would raise the issue against Poe should she decide to run for president in 2016, Binay said: “Nandiyan na po ‘yan e. Tingnan na lang [paano mangyayari].”

(The issue’s been already raised. We’ll just see.)

READ MORE...
It was lawyer JV Bautista, interim secretary-general of Binay’s United Nationalist Alliance (UNA), who raised the questions on Poe’s citizenship, saying a foundling’s citizenship is hard to determine.

“A foundling by definition is stateless,” Bautista was reportedly quoted as saying.

READ: A ‘foundling’: UNA claims new dope on Poe

Before this, UNA’s interim president and Navotas Representative Toby Tiangco said Poe was not qualified to run for a higher post in 2016 because she did not meet the 10-year residency requirement of the law.

But Poe, who has yet to decide whether or not to run for a higher post next year, immediately denied Tiangco’s allegation, saying she has been residing in the Philippines since 2005 or for 10 years by now. IDL

READ: Grace Poe to critics: I am qualified to run for higher post


BULLETIN OPINION

Is Grace Poe a Filipino? by Fr. Rolando V. De La Rosa, OP June 6, 2015 Share0 Tweet0 Share0 Email0 Share3


by Fr. Rolando V. De La Rosa, OP

When I read about the wise guys questioning Grace Poe’s citizenship, I involuntarily gave out a colossal yawn. These demolition attempts are becoming boring and tedious. People who are ferociously howling for Poe’s disqualification for the coming election are unwittingly giving her free publicity and forging her image as the underdog.

The past elections should teach Poe’s critics a lesson: the bleeding underdog almost always wins. The sympathy vote is not a myth. Making Poe the underdog elevates her in the voters’ eyes and discredits all her political enemies as ruthless, self-righteous, and unforgiving.

Today, it is unrealistic to equate ancestry or ethnicity with citizenship. Filipinos are a mixture of varied ethnic groups. Proof of citizenship is a legal requirement for candidacy in an election because of the assumption that only bona fide citizens can manifest patriotism and loyalty to the country.

However, there are many politicians and government leaders who are unquestionably Filipinos in ancestry and citizenship but who are neither patriotic nor loyal to the country. In fact, their greed and lust for power make the Philippines a basket case in Asia. On the other hand, there are foreigners who, even if they are not ethnically identified as Filipinos, serve the nation in various ways simply because they have learned to love the country and its people. In fact, many of them voluntarily gave up their foreign citizenship to become naturalized Filipinos.

READ MORE...
Rather than distracting the electorate with questions of nationality or citizenship, Poe’s potential rivals must re-focus the voters’ attention to the unresolved issues confronting us and which should be the subject of debates in the coming election.

Rather than asking Poe to prove her citizenship, they should ask Poe, if ever she runs, what her platform of government would be, and how she would respond to the PDAF and DAP scams, the Mamasapano massacre, the Maguindanao massacre, the teleserye-like investigations in the Senate, the basic-education problems compounded by the introduction of the K-12 curriculum, the undistributed billions of donations to Yolanda victims, etc.

Our brand of politics and our electoral system have brought the bar so low with Peter’s Principle that goes: “An ounce of image is worth a pound of performance.” In a world where the mass media has a stranglehold, entertaining rumor and sensationalized image-making myths about politicians too often become the basis of our decisions during elections.

In 1758, David Hume wrote: “Nothing appears more surprising to those who consider human affairs than the ease with which the many are governed by the few, and the way people resign their fate to those whom they elect to public office.”

Gore Vidal’s diagnosis of the American electoral system of which ours is a copy, seems to explain Hume’s predicament: “Our system of electing politicians to office is rotten and corrupted to its core, because organized money has long since replaced organized and enlightened public opinion.

And most of the money comes from rich people and corporations, who now own our political process—lock, stock, and (pork) barrel.”


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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