PHILIPPINE HEADLINE NEWS ONLINE: Since 1997 © Copyright (PHNO) http://newsflash.org



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

AT PUBLISH ASIA 2016: P-NOY SLAMS MEDIA BIAS, SENSATIONALISM
[“Media, and perhaps especially print media, (have) a special role to play before, during and after our elections – as it does at any critical time in even your own countries. We Filipinos will need a just, comprehensive accounting of this historic time, and you are in the best position to do that,” Aquino said.]


MARCH 31 -President Aquino addresses the opening of Publish Asia 2016 at the Manila Hotel yesterday. KRIZJOHN ROSALES
It was President Aquino’s turn to pose questions to the media yesterday to underscore the importance of truthful news reporting, especially with the coming elections and regional developments that help form public opinion. He also delved on the challenges faced by the print media in light of the popularity of social media. Aquino said truth, integrity and responsibility must not be compromised in the face of the apparent need for faster dissemination of information. He criticized sensationalism and biased, speculative and inaccurate reporting as well as the seeming lack of appetite for good news by media enterprises. “Media, and perhaps especially print media, (have) a special role to play before, during and after our elections – as it does at any critical time in even your own countries. We Filipinos will need a just, comprehensive accounting of this historic time, and you are in the best position to do that,” Aquino said during the Publish Asia 2016 opening ceremonies organized by the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA) and attended by local and foreign journalists. Aquino recalled that 16 years ago, his mother, former president Corazon Aquino spoke in one of the major universities’ center for journalism in the country when she was no longer chief executive and referred to a hostage-taking incident in Mindanao. She related how journalists seeking close contact with the hostages and hostage-takers, or seeking a scoop, likewise became captives, with their watches, laptops and shoes taken from them. “After narrating that incident, my mother posed a number of questions which, I believe, remain relevant not only in that particular context, or to Filipino reporters, but to each and every member of the industry today and in the years to come. Allow me to repeat some of those questions now: are the reporters telling what they see or what they think readers will pay to read? Do they understand what they see? Are they talking to the right people, or are they just retailing propaganda?” Aquino noted. READ MORE...

ALSO: Roxas on comic book: I didn’t approve it, but it’s accurate


MARCH 30 -Roxas, said the scenes depicted in the comic book were accurate.
GENERAL NAKAR, Philippines—Liberal Party (LP) standard-bearer Mar Roxas on Tuesday distanced himself from the creators of a comic book that depicted his role in the aftermath of Supertyphoon “Yolanda” in a heroic light. Roxas said he could not remember seeing or approving the release of the comic book, “Sa Gitna ng Unos” (In the Eye of the Storm), which he implied was made by his supporters without his knowledge. “I don’t know. Many materials are coming out,” he said when asked if he had seen or approved it.
“Comics is part of our culture, of regular and conventional campaigns,” he told reporters in a chance interview here after a visit to a livelihood center. “To those who appreciated it, thank you. To those reacting negatively, they are probably supporting our rivals, and perhaps they are reacting negatively because they see how effective it is,” he said. READ MORE...RELATED, Binay describes Roxas’ comics shameful...

ALSO: Duterte vows protection of journalists if elected


MARCH 30 -Presidential aspirant Rodrigo Duterte in Pangasinan. FILE/Jojo Riñoza/Manila Bulletin Presidential aspirant Rodrigo Duterte in Pangasinan. FILE/Jojo Riñoza/Manila Bulletin
PDP-LABAN standard bearer and Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte vowed to extend more protection to the country’s journalists, many of whom work under dangerous and even deadly conditions.
“The state must protect the media,” Duterte said, especially since the media play a vital role in a democracy. Duterte made the statement as the National Press Club on Wednesday challenged presidential candidates to lay down their agenda on media, particularly on solving media killings in the country. “In a democracy, the role of media is very important. In the absence of a credible opposition party, you can rely on the media,” Duterte said. He added it is the media that bring the wrongdoings of the government to the public’s attention. Unfortunately, it is this role that often exposes journalists to danger. According to the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP), 170 journalists have been killed in the country since 1986. Duterte’s spokesperson Peter Laviña said Duterte will put up special courts and prosecution panels to handle cases of media killings. He will also offer rewards and incentives for the immediate arrest, prosecution, and conviction of the killers. Laviña said Duterte will give police investigators and prosecutors quick and limited time to resolve these cases. “If not, they might as well look for another job,” he added. Laviña said Duterte has been a staunch protector of media rights, respecting their role as the “Fourth Estate” and never questioning them when they write or say anything critical of his administration. To date, Duterte has never filed a libel case against a journalist. READ MORE...

ALSO: Binay vows to finish houses for ‘Yolanda’ victims, protect journalists from violence
[Meanwhile, Binay, along with his running mate Senator Senator Gregorio “Gringo” Honasan II, also seconded the National Press Club’s (NPC) call for candidates running for national posts to disclose their stand on media killings. Binay said that as his administration’s anti-crime czar, Honasan would ensure that members of the media no longer have to fear for their lives in carrying out their duties and that the murders of journalists are prioritized by the authorities.]


APRIL 1 -VP BINAY
Tacloban City – United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) presidential bet Vice President Jejomar C. Binay yesterday vowed to complete the construction of almost 190,000 houses for victims of super-typhoon “Yolanda” under his presidency. “I will ensure the completion of the housing projects para sa (for) Yolanda victims in the first year of my administration,” Binay said. Likewise, he pledged to protect journalists from violence, saying his administration would prioritize the resolution of the cases of media killings and work toward protecting the members of the local media. “Violence against the media has no place in a Binay presidency. Press freedom must be respected and prioritized by the government and only a decisive leadership can end this culture of impunity in our country,” Binay said. “A leadership that shies away from these issues and downplays the murder of our journalists as not work-related is unacceptable. Likewise, a leadership that supports such atrocities is no leadership at all,” the 73-year-old human rights lawyer added. It was Binay, together with fellow MABINI lawyers Rene Saguisag, former senator Lorenzo Tañada, and the late senator Joker Arroyo who defended Joe Burgos and WE Forum editors and columnists from sedition charges during martial law. SACRIFICE OF JOURNALISTS The Vice President underscored the ultimate sacrifice from countless journalists over the years who died in the line of duty. “Many journalists have sacrificed their lives so that the next generation could benefit from their work,” he said. READ MORE...

ALSO: Poe mum on possibility of a GMA endorsement
[“I don’t want to preempt potential endorsers. They might change their mind and we might end up humiliated,” Poe said.]


APRIL 1 -COMPOSITE PHOTOS OF POE, ARROYO
Senator Grace Poe yesterday was tightlipped when she was asked if she’s prepared to accept former President and now detained Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo’s endorsement of her presidential bid. Poe, who campaigned for the second time in Pampanga yesterday, did not categorically say yes or no when asked if she is open to accepting the endorsement of her father’s rival in the 2004 presidential elections. It was recalled that Poe’s adoptive father the late actor Fernando “FPJ” Poe Jr. lost to then incumbent President Arroyo amid allegations of massive electoral fraud. “I don’t want to preempt potential endorsers. They might change their mind and we might end up humiliated,” Poe said. “Besides, an endorsement should be voluntarily given. I’d like to thank my endorsers but for me, I maintain my platform that whether you are a friend or a foe, you deserve equal treatment under the laws of this country,” she said at the sidelines of her campaign in Arroyo’s home province. Nevertheless, with only 38 days to go before the elections, Poe said she and her slate will double their efforts to visit more places in the country. Poe said she and her running mate Sen. Francis “Chiz” Escudero, along with the senatorial bets of their Partido Galing at Puso coalition, would be visiting a number of provinces in the coming weeks. READ MORE...RELATED,
Poe grateful for ‘Ninong’ Erap’s endorsement...


READ FULL MEDIA REPORTS HERE:

P-Noy slams media bias, sensationalism


President Aquino addresses the opening of Publish Asia 2016 at the Manila Hotel yesterday. KRIZJOHN ROSALES

MANILA, APRIL 4, 2016 (PHILSTAR)  By Aurea Calica -March 31, 2016 - It was President Aquino’s turn to pose questions to the media yesterday to underscore the importance of truthful news reporting, especially with the coming elections and regional developments that help form public opinion.

He also delved on the challenges faced by the print media in light of the popularity of social media.

Aquino said truth, integrity and responsibility must not be compromised in the face of the apparent need for faster dissemination of information.

He criticized sensationalism and biased, speculative and inaccurate reporting as well as the seeming lack of appetite for good news by media enterprises.

“Media, and perhaps especially print media, (have) a special role to play before, during and after our elections – as it does at any critical time in even your own countries. We Filipinos will need a just, comprehensive accounting of this historic time, and you are in the best position to do that,” Aquino said during the Publish Asia 2016 opening ceremonies organized by the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA) and attended by local and foreign journalists.

Aquino recalled that 16 years ago, his mother, former president Corazon Aquino spoke in one of the major universities’ center for journalism in the country when she was no longer chief executive and referred to a hostage-taking incident in Mindanao. She related how journalists seeking close contact with the hostages and hostage-takers, or seeking a scoop, likewise became captives, with their watches, laptops and shoes taken from them.

“After narrating that incident, my mother posed a number of questions which, I believe, remain relevant not only in that particular context, or to Filipino reporters, but to each and every member of the industry today and in the years to come.

Allow me to repeat some of those questions now: are the reporters telling what they see or what they think readers will pay to read? Do they understand what they see? Are they talking to the right people, or are they just retailing propaganda?” Aquino noted.

READ MORE...

The President said his mother was simply questioning the journalists’ dedication to the two most important values of the profession, namely integrity and truth.

“Your dedication to these two values is especially important in light of your expansion to new media technologies, which are the crux of your discussion today,” Aquino said.

“We all know that there has been a great shift away from the primacy of print to a 24/7 news cycle, where it only takes a single Tweet to break news — where anyone can report on anything, at any time, and have it reach anywhere in the world. These new forms of media challenge what print, at its best, is supposed to represent: depth and breadth, context and a clear delineation between opinion and news,” he said.

Aquino said the job of the media had become more complicated because of the need to expand to new media forms, which have their own limitations in terms of dissemination.

“At the same time, dissemination does not matter so much as the most basic responsibility, which is to deliver information — information that the people can trust, can lead to fruitful discussions on issues of national and global importance, that can even lead to positive transformation. This is the value and the service that you must provide,” Aquino said.

He said when the distinction between opinion and straightforward news gets blurred, the journalism profession is endangered.

“This is not only a matter of principle, it is also about practicality. Sensational headlines and articles composed of controversial rumors, for example, might increase your circulation… What happens, however, when the people notice your tendency towards such, when they realize that your articles are entertaining, perhaps, but cannot be verified and consequently trusted?”

Trust and truth telling

“In the long run, will they not seek alternative sources of information — sources that they know will tell them the truth?” the President said.

Aquino said this coming elections, candidates vying for the highest posts were trying to win the people’s trust in a variety of ways: from promises, to attempts to smear mud on the names of their rivals; from presentations of their records of service, to curses and strong language.

“All of this appears in your pages — some more sensational candidates featured more prominently than others, I have to point out. Everything you publish is indeed devoured by millions. In a very real way, you are luckier than these candidates,” he said.

“By far and large, you — the press — already have our people’s trust. This alone reflects the magnitude of your responsibility to wider society: to disseminate information, instead of speculation; to foster higher levels of discourse, instead of becoming a rumor mill; to empower citizenries and nations, instead of tearing them down. It is my deepest hope that you will never forget this — that, whether in the Philippines or elsewhere in the world, you live and work accordingly with the greater good of the public in mind,” Aquino said.

These past years, Aquino said he witnessed and had even been at the center of some attempts to balance traditional print and new media, citing as example a forum that was live-streamed on the Internet, documented through social media and with articles to chronicle the event the following day.

“On the other hand, I am also told that the majority of, if not all, outlets have demonstrated a tendency to sensationalize titles, or post only provocative portions of articles online purportedly to encourage people to go through the whole piece — a tactic which I understand the generation younger than mine calls ‘click bait.’ Never mind if the reader chooses only to view that particular snippet and assume that they have been presented with the complete story,” he said.

The President said the entire situation was complicated further by the fact that these stories published also in print did not seem to adhere to any set standard and more often than not, the art of crafting headlines seemed to favor embellishment and innuendo, as opposed to the facts.

“Some articles seem to be written with blatant bias, while others fail to adequately represent the situation accurately. Over the years I’ve increasingly wondered about this trend in light of the fact that print’s greatest advantage is that it can tell the complete story, whether in one article or in a series, and have that read by a still-strong readership,” Aquino said.

For instance, Aquino said those from the local media were increasingly read by citizens from around the world, perhaps due to the fact that more nations were turning to the region and viewing it as wellsprings of opportunity for collective growth.

“They seek information about us, which – and I believe you will be among the first to admit – you would likewise benefit from painting a complete picture,” the President said.

“Another example: Myanmar right now is undergoing a very significant transition. Print and indeed all forms of media can impair that transition by highlighting fears and unfounded speculation. The opposite path, what we are glad to be seeing, is that they have lent their support to this transition by highlighting the good news, by telling the truth about people’s sentiments, their dreams and their efforts to realize that through democratic means,” Aquino said.

For his part, Aquino said he promised Filipinos in 2010 that, when he steps down from office, he would leave behind a country in a far better situation. But in the coming elections, he said he was cognizant that his vote would be just like anyone else’s.

“When I have voted, I will wait for the results with the rest of the country,” he said.

“We believe the successes and reforms of our administration are enough to help our countrymen make the right decision in the upcoming elections; even now, I continue to do my part,” he said.

“We face a fork in the road: Will we choose to continue treading the straight path of the past few years? Or will we choose the opposite?”


INQUIRER

Roxas on comic book: I didn’t approve it, but it’s accurate SHARES: 2181 VIEW COMMENTS By: DJ Yap @inquirerdotnet Philippine Daily Inquirer 05:12 AM March 30th, 2016


Roxas, said the scenes depicted in the comic book were accurate.

GENERAL NAKAR, Philippines—Liberal Party (LP) standard-bearer Mar Roxas on Tuesday distanced himself from the creators of a comic book that depicted his role in the aftermath of Supertyphoon “Yolanda” in a heroic light.

Roxas said he could not remember seeing or approving the release of the comic book, “Sa Gitna ng Unos” (In the Eye of the Storm), which he implied was made by his supporters without his knowledge.

“I don’t know. Many materials are coming out,” he said when asked if he had seen or approved it.

“Comics is part of our culture, of regular and conventional campaigns,” he told reporters in a chance interview here after a visit to a livelihood center.

“To those who appreciated it, thank you. To those reacting negatively, they are probably supporting our rivals, and perhaps they are reacting negatively because they see how effective it is,” he said.

READ MORE...

The former interior secretary became the object of online ridicule after portions of the comic book circulated on social media, with many netizens making fun of or commenting scathingly on its contents.

The comic provided details of Roxas’ life story and record in public service, culminating in a sensational scene that dramatized where he was and what he did when Tacloban City was inundated by storm surges in November 2013.

Heroic portrayal

Some observers were irked at the heroic portrayal of Roxas, who had come under heavy fire in the aftermath of the Yolanda devastation for the slow government response to the calamity.

Roxas, however, suggested that the scenes depicted in the comic book were accurate.

“I thank our supporters for making [this comic book] and explaining what really happened [during Yolanda],” he said.

Asked if he saw nothing wrong, Roxas said: “What do I tell them (supporters)—to stop?”

He seemed piqued by the persistent questioning, at one point asking one reporter, “Is this the biggest issue?”

At the end of the interview, he said the day’s real issue was the money-laundering case involving $81 million stolen from the Bangladesh central bank that was funneled into the Philippine banking system.

Controversial propaganda

Militant lawmakers are demanding that Roxas pull out all copies of the controversial propaganda comic book.

Bayan Muna party-list member Neri Colmenares, a senatorial candidate, said the LP’s full-color, 28-page comic book was a “glaring insult” to the victims of Yolanda because it used “lies not only to prop up his candidacy but also to revise history.”

Anakpawis party-list Fernando Hicap described the comic book as “the most disturbing political ad” of Roxas.


Hicap claimed that Roxas’ mishandling of the goverment’s preparations and rescue efforts in the Eastern Visayas, particularly Tacloban City, has been widely documented. With Gil Cabacungan

RELATED
Duterte camp calls Roxas comic book ‘comical, pure fantasy’


INQUIRER

Binay describes Roxas’ comics shameful SHARES: 3 VIEW COMMENTS By: Marc Jayson Cayabyab @MJcayabyabINQ INQUIRER.net 10:33 PM March 30th, 2016


Liberal party presidential candidate Mar Roxas and “Sa Gitna ng Unos” comic book. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

TACLOBAN CITY, Philippines—After refusing to comment on the issue, Vice President Jejomar Binay described as “shameful” the comics portraying his political nemesis Mar Roxas as the hero in the aftermath of super typhoon Yolanda.

READ: Binay refuses to comment on Roxas comic book

During his public rally at Tacloban Astrodome Wednesday night, a visibly angry Binay blasted at Roxas for being a “master of propaganda,” again likening him to Joseph Goebbels, the chief propagandist of the dictator Adolf Hitler during the Nazi rule in Germany.

“Ang yabang-yabang nito, sabagay e ngayon ho nagpagawa pa ng comics. My God! How shameful it is,” Binay said, rousing an applause from the audience.

“Sa bagay, ito ang isang gobyerno na lagi kong sinasabi mula ho diyan kay Mar Roxas, ikaw e disipulo ni Goebbels,” he added.

Binay then chided Roxas for calling himself as the hero in the onslaught of Yolanda.

“Nakow! Bayani siya, he was a hero in Yolanda, oh my God!” he said.

“I think he was an outstanding in his incompetence in trying…to rehabilitate … the people of Tacloban,” Binay added.

In the comics titled “Sa Gitna ng Unos,” Roxas, who was then an Interior Secretary, was portrayed as a hero when he was in Leyte in the onslaught of Yolanda, the monster typhoon that killed more than 6,000 people, mostly in Tacloban, when it struck Central Philippines in November 2013.

READ MORE...

Tacloban is the most severely-hit in Leyte, after storm surges flattened houses and drowned everyone in its wake.
Roxas has fended off the attacks due to the comics, even saying the scenes portraying him as a hero were accurate.

The comics became an online ridicule on Roxas, who was criticized for the slow government response at the onslaught of Yolanda.

Binay vowed that under his presidency, he would manage a crisis and not repeat the same mistake of slow government response during a major calamity.

“Ilang taon na. Sa akin pong pangangasiwa, when I become President I assure you, I will handle, I will manage any cause of calamity or any cost of crisis. Why? Because I am a decisive leader,” Binay said.

A chairman of the National Housing Authority (NHA), Binay defended himself from the backlog of shelters for Yolanda victims and instead blamed the government’s failure for the timely release of the budget that could have benefited the storm victims, many of them still living in tent villages.

“Chairman ako ng NHA, ang dami kong nagawa na mga bahay. Ito ang nakakalungkot. Bakit hindi namin mabuo yung mga bahay na dapat gawin dito sa Yolanda victims? Kasi hindi kami binibigyan ng pera. Nandun, nakabudget na, hindi naman nirerelease!” Binay said.

Binay chided Roxas for being incompetent in handling a major calamity such as Yolanda.

“Paano po kami tumulong, sa abot ng aming makakaya. Hindi katulad ng iba, nagmamaang-maangan, nagsisinungaling, na wala naman talagang ginagawa. Ito ay pagpapakita lamang ng kakulangan sa tamang pamamahala. Maari siguro may karanasan pero competence? Zero, if I may say so,” Binay said. TVJ

RELATED STORIES
Comic book showing ‘hero’ Roxas during ‘Yolanda’ draws flak


MANILA BULLETIN

Duterte vows protection of journalists if elected by Philippine News Agency March 31, 2016 Share5 Tweet2 Share0 Email0 Share46


Presidential aspirant Rodrigo Duterte in Pangasinan. FILE/Jojo Riñoza/Manila Bulletin Presidential aspirant Rodrigo Duterte in Pangasinan. FILE/Jojo Riñoza/Manila Bulletin

PDP-LABAN standard bearer and Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte vowed to extend more protection to the country’s journalists, many of whom work under dangerous and even deadly conditions.

“The state must protect the media,” Duterte said, especially since the media play a vital role in a democracy.

Duterte made the statement as the National Press Club on Wednesday challenged presidential candidates to lay down their agenda on media, particularly on solving media killings in the country.

“In a democracy, the role of media is very important. In the absence of a credible opposition party, you can rely on the media,” Duterte said.

He added it is the media that bring the wrongdoings of the government to the public’s attention.

Unfortunately, it is this role that often exposes journalists to danger.

According to the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP), 170 journalists have been killed in the country since 1986.

Duterte’s spokesperson Peter Laviña said Duterte will put up special courts and prosecution panels to handle cases of media killings.

He will also offer rewards and incentives for the immediate arrest, prosecution, and conviction of the killers.

Laviña said Duterte will give police investigators and prosecutors quick and limited time to resolve these cases.

“If not, they might as well look for another job,” he added.

Laviña said Duterte has been a staunch protector of media rights, respecting their role as the “Fourth Estate” and never questioning them when they write or say anything critical of his administration.

To date, Duterte has never filed a libel case against a journalist.

READ MORE...

Laviña also said it was Duterte who stood behind the provincial media’s right to equal access to Presidential debates, even threatening to snub the first round in Cagayan De Oro City last Feb. 21 if the organizers limit the coverage for local media.

“If you limit the press coverage, I will not attend… That is the reason I am running for President. I want people from the provinces to be given equal treatment,” Duterte said in an interview prior to the debate.

The organizers subsequently increased local media’s coverage of the debate.

Duterte has also consistently defended journalists’ rights, even to the point of standing up to then-President Gloria Arroyo when the latter imposed Proclamation No. 1017 on Feb. 24, 2006 placing the entire country under a state of emergency following an alleged coup attempt.

The proclamation, among others, revoked on all licenses and permits to hold demonstrations and protests. It also allowed government to control public utilities, including the media.

Duterte refused to implement the proclamation and did not stop journalists in Davao City from holding a protest rally and march on March 3, 2006.

For journalists who have found themselves in trouble for doing their work, the PDP-LABAN standard bearer has always offered a helping hand.

Duterte extended legal and livelihood assistance to radio broadcaster Alex Adonis who was convicted for libel filed by former Davao Rep. Prospero Nograles.

While he was incarcerated at the Davao Prison and Penal Farm, the broadcaster’s family received monthly financial assistance from Duterte.

After his release from prison two years after, Adonis also received livelihood assistance from Duterte until he was hired by RMN Davao.

Duterte even expanded his offer, saying he was willing to help “all those who will be released from jail and would want to start anew.”


MANILA BULLETIN

Binay vows to finish houses for ‘Yolanda’ victims, protect journalists from violence by Ellson A. Quismorio and Anna Liza Villas Alvaren April 1, 2016 Share0 Tweet0 Share0 Email0 Share5


VP BINAY

Tacloban City – United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) presidential bet Vice President Jejomar C. Binay yesterday vowed to complete the construction of almost 190,000 houses for victims of super-typhoon “Yolanda” under his presidency.

“I will ensure the completion of the housing projects para sa (for) Yolanda victims in the first year of my administration,” Binay said.

Likewise, he pledged to protect journalists from violence, saying his administration would prioritize the resolution of the cases of media killings and work toward protecting the members of the local media.

“Violence against the media has no place in a Binay presidency. Press freedom must be respected and prioritized by the government and only a decisive leadership can end this culture of impunity in our country,” Binay said.

“A leadership that shies away from these issues and downplays the murder of our journalists as not work-related is unacceptable. Likewise, a leadership that supports such atrocities is no leadership at all,” the 73-year-old human rights lawyer added.

It was Binay, together with fellow MABINI lawyers Rene Saguisag, former senator Lorenzo Tañada, and the late senator Joker Arroyo who defended Joe Burgos and WE Forum editors and columnists from sedition charges during martial law.

SACRIFICE OF JOURNALISTS

The Vice President underscored the ultimate sacrifice from countless journalists over the years who died in the line of duty.

“Many journalists have sacrificed their lives so that the next generation could benefit from their work,” he said.

READ MORE...

During his public rally at Tacloban Astrodome, Binay said he would manage crisis effectively to avoid a repeat of slow government response in times of disaster.

“It’s been how many years? Under my leadership, when I become president, I will assure you that I will manage any cause of calamity,” Binay told the rally attendees.

In his speech, Binay hit the present administration for its failure to expedite the release of funds.

“We were not given enough money. It was already in the budget but was not released,” said Binay.

The UNA standard-bearer also chided administration presidential bet Mar Roxas for what he called “incompetence in managing a calamity such as Yolanda.”

“Binigyan niyo kami ng pagkakataon nung Yolanda. Paano po kami tumulong, sa abot ng aming makakaya. Hindi katulad ng iba, nagmamaang-maangan, nagsisinungaling, na wala naman talagang ginagawa. Ito ay pagpapakita lamang ng kakulangan sa tamang pamamahala. Maari siguro may karanasan pero competence? Zero, if I may say so,” said Binay, referring to political opponent Roxas.

As present, the housing need for 14 provinces in the Visayas reached 205,128 housing units, government data showed.

Of these, 17,641 units have been built by October, 2015. Government expects to build another 92,554 units by December, 2016.

“I will direct all government agencies involved in the housing program to address the problem and expedite the construction of the houses,” he added.

SWIFT CALAMITY FUND RELEASE

Binay also vowed that there will be no delays in the release of calamity funds to aid calamity victims.

He issued the statement after the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) announced the release of P2.25 billion for Bottom-Up Budgeting (BUB) projects in the Eastern Visayas only a month before the 2016 national elections.

“We will release calamity funds and rehabilitation funds for the speedy recovery and rehabilitation of affected areas,” Binay said.

The opposition presidential bet also added that poverty can easily worsen in a calamity hit area if the government will not move fast to aid affected people.

Binay noted that the poverty incidence in Eastern Visayas worsened to 54.9 percent during the first half of 2014 following the devastation of Yolanda. It was 45.2 percent in 2012.

Binay, a former longtime Makati City mayor, had earlier promised to issue an executive order to implement the People’s Ownership of Government Information (POGI) bill during the first 100 days of his administration.

POGI is Binay’s version of the Freedom of Information (FOI) bill, which unfortunately won’t get passed by the end of President Aquino’s tenure this June.

It was recalled that Aquino made it a campaign promise to pass the pro-transparency measure.

The POGI Bill will provide ordinary citizens with access to information on matters of public concern. It also seeks to address the legal loopholes that have allowed government agencies to openly disregard the people’s right to information.

NPC DARE

Meanwhile, Binay, along with his running mate Senator Senator Gregorio “Gringo” Honasan II, also seconded the National Press Club’s (NPC) call for candidates running for national posts to disclose their stand on media killings.

Binay said that as his administration’s anti-crime czar, Honasan would ensure that members of the media no longer have to fear for their lives in carrying out their duties and that the murders of journalists are prioritized by the authorities.

UNA spokesman Mon Ilagan, a former broadcast journalist, said that the Vice President is serious in putting a stop to the culture of impunity and the rising cases of media killings.


MANILA BULLETIN

Poe mum on possibility of a GMA endorsement by Hannah Torregoza April 1, 2016 Share0 Tweet0 Share0 Email0 Share10


COMPOSITE PHOTOS OF POE, ARROYO

Senator Grace Poe yesterday was tightlipped when she was asked if she’s prepared to accept former President and now detained Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo’s endorsement of her presidential bid.

Poe, who campaigned for the second time in Pampanga yesterday, did not categorically say yes or no when asked if she is open to accepting the endorsement of her father’s rival in the 2004 presidential elections.

It was recalled that Poe’s adoptive father the late actor Fernando “FPJ” Poe Jr. lost to then incumbent President Arroyo amid allegations of massive electoral fraud.

“I don’t want to preempt potential endorsers. They might change their mind and we might end up humiliated,” Poe said.

“Besides, an endorsement should be voluntarily given. I’d like to thank my endorsers but for me, I maintain my platform that whether you are a friend or a foe, you deserve equal treatment under the laws of this country,” she said at the sidelines of her campaign in Arroyo’s home province.

Nevertheless, with only 38 days to go before the elections, Poe said she and her slate will double their efforts to visit more places in the country.

Poe said she and her running mate Sen. Francis “Chiz” Escudero, along with the senatorial bets of their Partido Galing at Puso coalition, would be visiting a number of provinces in the coming weeks.

READ MORE...

She said part of their itinerary include Cebu, Samar, Batangas, Catanduanes, Laguna, Sorsogon, Camarines Sur, Masbate, Marinduque and Rizal. They would also be going around Metro Manila.

‘MALACAÑANG’ IN PANGASINAN

Meanwhile, Poe has vowed to establish a regional office of Malacañang in Pangasinan should she win in the May 9, 2016 national elections.

She announced this during a campaign sortie in San Nicolas, Pangasinan, Tuesday while acknowledging the huge support of Pangasinenses gave her when she ran for senator in 2013 and her father when he ran for president in 2004.

“Noong tumakbo si FPJ ‘nung 2004, ang Pangasinan ang kauna-unahang nagdeklara na siya ay Pilipino, na siya ay isang mabuting tao, na siya ay isang taga-Pangasinan. At ‘nung ako naman ay tumakbo ‘nung 2013, bagama’t isang ampon, itong Pangasinan ang unang umako sa akin at nagsabing ‘anak ng Pangasinan’ kaya number one din ako dito noong 2013,” Poe told a crowd of over 5,000 people.

“Kapag ako ay naging pinuno ninyo, hindi ako magbibingi-bingihan o magbubulag-bulagan sa kailangan ninyo. Ang Malacañang ay hindi dapat sa Maynila lamang. Sa bawat rehiyon magkakaroon ako ng opisina para mas madali ninyo akong mapuntahan. At, siyempre, ang isa sa unang opisina ay dito sa Pangasinan,” Poe said.

She also made sure that the promised access to education for indigent students and free irrigation for farmers will benefit the people of the province.

During their campaign sorties in Batangas and Pangasinan, Poe also vowed to work for a free irrigation system in all parts of the country.

“If we will be given the chance, there will be free irrigation for our farmers. It is so unfortunate that the government is collecting irrigation service fees even if the farmers are affected by typhoons and El Niño and failure to pay such fees would mean filing cases against our farmers,” Poe said.

“We, in the Government with a Heart, prioritize the needs of our poor compatriots,” she said.

Poe also vowed to provide free lunch for all elementary school students and free tuition fees for all students of state colleges and universities in the country.

Poe has also wants to have regular salaries for all barangay health workers (BHWs), instead of providing them with honorarium or allowances. She said BHWs deserve to be given regular pay, citing the nature of their work.

Aside from regular salaries, BHWs should also be given sufficient equipment for their health centers to better care for patients in their respective areas.

“We will equip our barangay health centers and we will give regular salaries to BHWs, not just allowance,” Poe said, lamenting that the BHWs are only currently receiving honorarium.

Poe sympathizes with the BHWs and other appointed barangay officials who just rely on allowances or honorarium and are not entitled to receive retirement benefits.

“Senator Chiz Escudero had earlier pointed out, even if you served for 20 years, you are not entitled to receive retirement benefits. You must have a regular salary because it will be the basis on how much you are going to receive when you retire,” she said. (With reports from Freddie G. Lazaro, Charissa M. Luci, and Liezle Basa Iñigo)

-------------------------------------------

RELATED FROM MANILA BULLETIN

Poe grateful for ‘Ninong’ Erap’s endorsement by Hannah Torregoza March 29, 2016 Share446 Tweet0 Share0 Email0 Share486


Senator Grace Poe (MB File Photo/ Camille Ante)

Presidential candidate Senator Grace Poe expressed her gratitude with the endorsement of former President and now Manila City Mayor Joseph Ejercito “Erap” Estrada, saying it was an honor and a privilege to get the former leader’s support.

After months of speculations, Poe finally got the endorsement of her adoptive father’s bestfriend and long-time ally.

Senator Grace Poe (MB file photo/ Camille Ante) Poe, a foundling, was adopted by the late actor Fernando “FPJ” Poe, Jr. and his wife Susan Roces. FPJ ran during the 2004 presidential elections against then-president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo but lost.

Estrada made the announcement before his supporters at the Liwasang Bonifacio in Manila. He also endorsed the vice presidential bid of Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr.

“Gusto lang kita tanungin, Ninong. Kaya mo ba ako inendorso ay dahil natatakot kang multuhin ka? (I just want to ask you, ninong. Did you endorse me because you’re afraid my father might appear to you as a ghost?)” Poe told Estrada in jest, eliciting laughter from the audience.

“Kasi ‘yan ang palagi niyang sinasabi sa akin eh: ‘Baka ‘pag hindi kita inendorso ay multuhin ako ng bestfriend ko.’ Pero, Ninong, sinabi ko na kay Papa na huwag ka namang multuhin kung sakaling iba ang maging desisyon mo. (Is that why you always say that if ‘I don’t endorse you, my bestfriend might appear to me?’ But I told Dad not to do so if ever you change your decision,” she said.

“Ang para sa akin, isang karangalan ang magkaroon ng pagsuporta ng isang mahal ng masa at nagmamahal sa ating mga kababayan (For me, it’s an honor to get the support of somebody who is loved by the masses and who loves our people just as well),” Poe said.

Valenzuela City Mayor Rex Gatchalian said the Poe-Escudero camp is grateful for Estrada’s endorsement.

“Mayor Erap’s endorsement speaks of the characters ingrained in Sen. Grace Poe: trustworthy, honest and upright. These very traits, are the same virtues our voters see in Sen. Poe,” Gatchalian said in a text message.

“This endorsement brings to full circle the relationship between the Estradas and Poes that spans decades,” Gatchalian said.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

© Copyright, 2016 by PHILIPPINE HEADLINE NEWS ONLINE
All rights reserved


PHILIPPINE HEADLINE NEWS ONLINE [PHNO] WEBSITE