AQUINO'S INDEPENDENCE DAY SPEECH TURNED TO PARRYING OPPOSITION SENATORS

JUNE 12 --After reflecting on the importance of Thursday’s celebration of Independence Day as the “culmination of all sacrifices, battles and triumphs of the Filipinos’ ancestors,” President Aquino turned to parrying opposition senators’ accusations that politics was behind their being charged with plunder for the P10-billion pork barrel scam. But politics has nothing to do with it, Aquino said. Unlike the martyrs from the Bicol region who were meted out the death penalty by the Spanish colonizers without trial in 1896, all those responsible for the pork barrel scam were accorded due process, Aquino said in a speech at Plaza Quince Martires in Naga City marking the 116th anniversary of Philippine independence. Aquino did not name the senators, referring to them as “prominent personalities.” Entertainers: But it was clear that he was talking about opposition Senators Jinggoy Estrada, Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr. and Juan Ponce Enrile who, together with businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles, were indicted by the Ombudsman in the Sandiganbayan last Friday for the misuse of the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) from 2004 to 2012. The President urged voters to go for candidates “who can fight for the interest of every citizen” in the 2016 elections. “We don’t need good script readers, good at dancing or singing,” Aquino said, taking a swipe at Estrada and Revilla, both of whom were movie actors who were elected to the Senate because of their popularity. “It is important to reflect on our history, especially now that we are treading the path toward reform and justice,” Aquino said. “We are all aware of what is happening at present: Several prominent personalities have been charged with plunder by the Ombudsman for the misuse of the PDAF. Their response to the accusation: ‘We are being singled out for political reasons.’” CONTINUE READING...

ALSO: Entertainers not singled out, Palace says, when President warned against voting for 'good script readers, singers'....

JUNE 13 --The Palace on Friday said President Aquino was not targeting a specific group when he warned voters against electing entertainers into office. The President was merely reminding the electorate to choose leaders on qualities beyond their singing and dancing talent, said presidential deputy spokeswoman Abigail Valte. “What the President was trying to say is that qualification should not be limited to that and that more should be considered when someone puts himself or herself up for election,” Valte said in a Palace press briefing. Valte also said the President cannot be begrudged “for being straightforward and… frank” in his public engagements. “The President… is already known for saying what is on his mind and there have been also a number of occasions that he has been criticized for saying what is on his mind directly to at least people who are present in the audience,” Valte said. In his Independence Day speech Thursday, the President urged voters to choose candidates who will uphold the welfare of the country. Aquino said the nation does not need “those whose words are merely dictated by scripts, nor do we need talented dancers or fantastic singers.”  Asked if the President’s remarks would backfire on his show business sister Kris, Valte declined to comment. “I cannot answer that question. I’m not quite sure about the plans of the presidential sister,” she said. THIS IS THE FULL REPORT.

ALSO: 'Silence is better than BS,' says Kris of Bong's privilege speech

JUNE 13 --Kris Aquino, the younger sister of President Benigno Aquino III, opened up on her sentiments about Senator Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr.'s privilege speech on Monday. “Sinabi ko nga yun e, na silence is really better than BS,” the TV host-actress said on her ABS-CBN late night talk show “Aquino and Abunda Tonight” on Monday, June 9. During his privilege speech, Revilla, who allegedly amassed more than P200 million via the pork barrel scam, called on PNoy to end the political bickering over the said issue. “Tama na po ang awayan. Tigilan na ang politika ng paghihiwalay," the senator said. "Lead this country not with hatred but with love. Lead the country with unity and not partisanship. Push our nation's interest and not political agenda.” Revilla also said: “Hindi tama at hindi maganda na maaalala ka at ang iyong administrasyon sa pagpapakulong lamang ng mga hindi mo kaalyado. Jailing your oppositors should not be the only achievement and legacy you will be leaving behind.” But Kris, in defense of her brother, said the issue is not about Noynoy and his presidency. “This is an issue about the pork barrel na, thank God, wala kinalaman si Noy dun, malinis ang konsensya ng kapatid ko, kaya malakas ang loob niya na isulong, di ba, ang paglilinis ng gobyerno,” she said. ALSO READ: Kris on Herbert: 'There is peace in keeping quiet' The 43-year-old ABS-CBN talent also said: “I want to respect what the family is going through. But I also have to respect my family and my brother.” “And to this day, 72 percent of the Philippines, of the Filipino citizens say that he enjoys the trust and the support of the people.” Senators Jinggoy Estrada, Juan Ponce Enrile, and Revilla are facing plunder cases over the pork barrel scam.

(ALSO) Kris on Herbert: 'There is peace in keeping quiet

JUNE 13 --Kris Aquino chooses to remain mum about Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista as the two face new issues about their aborted romance. On her official Instagram account on Monday, the 43-year-old TV host-actress shared a text exchange with The STAR entertainment editor Ricky Lo, who asked her if she wants to “say your piece” regarding Bautista. On the caption for the text message screencap, Kris explained that “there is peace in keeping quiet.” “It is tempting to defend myself but what for? I've stumbled several times in my public handling of private breakups. And after all those experiences, thank God NATUTO NA KO,” she said. Kris added: “There is peace in keeping quiet kasi nga kagaya ng sinabi ni Boy Abunda, pag mainit pa ang sitwasyon at marami kang nabitawang salita pag kalmado na, pinahirapan mo lang ang sarili mo kasi ang dami mong kailangan walisin at ayusin.” “At 43 years old, finally learning when it's best to just keep my mouth shut.” READ MORE...

(ALSO) Bong to PNoy: End political division

JUNE 9 --Beleaguered Senator Ramon Revilla Jr. on Monday called for unity and an end to political bickering over the pork barrel scam. In his televised privilege speech, Revilla challenged President Benigno Aquino III to unite the country after the political division created by the scam that implicated several government officials. "Tama na po ang awayan. Tigilan na ang politika ng paghihiwalay," the senator said. "Lead this country not with hatred but with love. Lead the country with unity and not partisanship. Push our nation's interest and not political agenda," Revilla told Aquino. READ MORE..


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Aquino's speech on independence day turned to parrying opposition Senators


President Benigno S. Aquino III delivers his speech during the commemoration of the 116th anniversary of the proclamation of Philippine Independence at the Plaza Quince Martires in Naga City, Camarines Sur on Thursday, June 12, 2014. Also in photo are Interior and Local Government Secretary Manuel Roxas II, Camarines Sur 3rd District Representative Ma. Leonor Robredo and National Historical Commission of the Philippines chairperson Maria Serena Diokno. PHOTO BY GIL NARTEA/MALACAÑANG PHOTO BUREAU

NAGA CITY, JUNE 13, 2014 (INQUIRER) By Christian V. Esguerra, Juan Escandor Jr. - After reflecting on the importance of Thursday’s celebration of Independence Day as the “culmination of all sacrifices, battles and triumphs of the Filipinos’ ancestors,”

President Aquino turned to parrying opposition senators’ accusations that politics was behind their being charged with plunder for the P10-billion pork barrel scam.

But politics has nothing to do with it, Aquino said.

Unlike the martyrs from the Bicol region who were meted out the death penalty by the Spanish colonizers without trial in 1896, all those responsible for the pork barrel scam were accorded due process, Aquino said in a speech at Plaza Quince Martires in Naga City marking the 116th anniversary of Philippine independence.|

Aquino did not name the senators, referring to them as “prominent personalities.”

Entertainers

But it was clear that he was talking about opposition Senators Jinggoy Estrada, Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr. and Juan Ponce Enrile who, together with businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles, were indicted by the Ombudsman in the Sandiganbayan last Friday for the misuse of the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) from 2004 to 2012.

The President urged voters to go for candidates “who can fight for the interest of every citizen” in the 2016 elections.

“We don’t need good script readers, good at dancing or singing,” Aquino said, taking a swipe at Estrada and Revilla, both of whom were movie actors who were elected to the Senate because of their popularity.

“It is important to reflect on our history, especially now that we are treading the path toward reform and justice,” Aquino said. “We are all aware of what is happening at present: Several prominent personalities have been charged with plunder by the Ombudsman for the misuse of the PDAF. Their response to the accusation: ‘We are being singled out for political reasons.’”

Revilla and Estrada delivered privilege speeches in the Senate on Monday and Wednesday, respectively, accusing the administration of singling them out in prosecuting those responsible for the pork barrel scam when some political allies of Aquino were involved as well.

Widely criticized speech

In a widely criticized privilege speech, Revilla urged Aquino to govern with “love, not hate.” His speech included an audio-visual presentation showing him greeting supporters with his “original song” playing in the background.

On Wednesday, Estrada accused the Department of Justice and the Commission on Audit of “selective investigation” in looking into the pork barrel scam.

Estrada, Revilla and Enrile are facing arrest and detention. Plunder is a nonbailable offense punishable by life imprisonment.

Due process

In his speech, Aquino countered that his administration observed due process in investigating and bringing charges in the pork barrel scam case.

The President said news of pork barrel allocations being channeled to fake foundations first came out during the 2013 elections.

He said he instructed Justice Secretary Leila de Lima “not to make any accusations until there is sufficient evidence.”

“We could have done this in haste without any strong basis just to destroy the names of those linked to the controversy, but we went through the right process in ferreting out the truth,” he said.

“We followed the correct process. We opened an investigation, gathered, and are still gathering, evidence, and ultimately filed charges,” the President said.

“But now, we’re the ones accused of politicking. It’s up to you to decide who you will side with in this issue,” he said.

Lessons from Ninoy

Aquino said he would be the last person to accuse others unjustly, recalling lessons from his father, the late Sen. Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr., who, according to him, taught him that “in a democracy every citizen is required not only to protect the right of those they agree with but also to defend the rights of those they disagree with.”

“If you disregard the rights of others, the time will come that your own rights will be disregarded,” the President said.

“My family’s legacy taught me the importance of fighting for equality to break the vicious cycle of injustice. Now that I am in a position to apply these principles, I will continue to do all in my power to offer justice not to a select few but to the entire nation,” Aquino said.

“Ending corruption and the abuse of the system anywhere in the Philippines, whether in the local or the national level, will create stronger institutions that will better serve every Filipino. Each of us has something to contribute so that the sacrifices our forefathers made for us will not be in vain,” he said.

Projects for Bicol

The President said his administration has been more preoccupied with pushing for projects and initiatives for Bicol, including an international airport in Daraga City in Albay province that, he said, would stimulate tourism and help develop trade and communication in the region.

Aquino also mentioned a one-stop migrants resource center in Naga City that he described as part of his administration’s program for bolstering the qualifications of overseas Filipino workers.

The President also spoke about the extension of the Philippine National Railways charter, which, he said, would lead to new economic possibilities not only for the provinces on the path of the tracks but also for all Filipinos who stand to benefit from a vibrant economy. Originally posted at 12:48 am | Friday, June 13, 2014

FROM THE MANILA BULLETIN

Entertainers not singled out, Palace says by Genalyn Kabiling
June 13, 2014

The Palace on Friday said President Aquino was not targeting a specific group when he warned voters against electing entertainers into office.

The President was merely reminding the electorate to choose leaders on qualities beyond their singing and dancing talent, said presidential deputy spokeswoman Abigail Valte.

“What the President was trying to say is that qualification should not be limited to that and that more should be considered when someone puts himself or herself up for election,” Valte said in a Palace press briefing.

Valte also said the President cannot be begrudged “for being straightforward and… frank” in his public engagements.

“The President… is already known for saying what is on his mind and there have been also a number of occasions that he has been criticized for saying what is on his mind directly to at least people who are present in the audience,” Valte said.

In his Independence Day speech Thursday, the President urged voters to choose candidates who will uphold the welfare of the country. Aquino said the nation does not need “those whose words are merely dictated by scripts, nor do we need talented dancers or fantastic singers.”

Asked if the President’s remarks would backfire on his show business sister Kris, Valte declined to comment.

“I cannot answer that question. I’m not quite sure about the plans of the presidential sister,” she said.

FROM PHILSTAR

'Silence is better than BS,' says Kris of Bong's privilege speech By Chuck Smith (philstar.com) | Updated June 10, 2014 - 3:48pm 13 1001 googleplus0 0


Kris Aquino (Photo from Kris Aquino's Instagram account)

MANILA, Philippines – Kris Aquino, the younger sister of President Benigno Aquino III, opened up on her sentiments about Senator Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr.'s privilege speech on Monday.

“Sinabi ko nga yun e, na silence is really better than BS,” the TV host-actress said on her ABS-CBN late night talk show “Aquino and Abunda Tonight” on Monday, June 9.

During his privilege speech, Revilla, who allegedly amassed more than P200 million via the pork barrel scam, called on PNoy to end the political bickering over the said issue.

“Tama na po ang awayan. Tigilan na ang politika ng paghihiwalay," the senator said. "Lead this country not with hatred but with love. Lead the country with unity and not partisanship. Push our nation's interest and not political agenda.”

Revilla also said: “Hindi tama at hindi maganda na maaalala ka at ang iyong administrasyon sa pagpapakulong lamang ng mga hindi mo kaalyado. Jailing your oppositors should not be the only achievement and legacy you will be leaving behind.”

But Kris, in defense of her brother, said the issue is not about Noynoy and his presidency.

“This is an issue about the pork barrel na, thank God, wala kinalaman si Noy dun, malinis ang konsensya ng kapatid ko, kaya malakas ang loob niya na isulong, di ba, ang paglilinis ng gobyerno,” she said.

The 43-year-old ABS-CBN talent also said: “I want to respect what the family is going through. But I also have to respect my family and my brother.”

“And to this day, 72 percent of the Philippines, of the Filipino citizens say that he enjoys the trust and the support of the people.”

Senators Jinggoy Estrada, Juan Ponce Enrile, and Revilla are facing plunder cases over the pork barrel scam.

Kris on Herbert: 'There is peace in keeping quiet' By Chuck Smith (philstar.com) | Updated June 9, 2014 - 4:16pm 33 1024 googleplus0 0


Kris Aquino & Herbert Bautista

MANILA, Philippines – Kris Aquino chooses to remain mum about Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista as the two face new issues about their aborted romance.

On her official Instagram account on Monday, the 43-year-old TV host-actress shared a text exchange with The STAR entertainment editor Ricky Lo, who asked her if she wants to “say your piece” regarding Bautista.

On the caption for the text message screencap, Kris explained that “there is peace in keeping quiet.”

“It is tempting to defend myself but what for? I've stumbled several times in my public handling of private breakups. And after all those experiences, thank God NATUTO NA KO,” she said.

Kris added: “There is peace in keeping quiet kasi nga kagaya ng sinabi ni Boy Abunda, pag mainit pa ang sitwasyon at marami kang nabitawang salita pag kalmado na, pinahirapan mo lang ang sarili mo kasi ang dami mong kailangan walisin at ayusin.”

“At 43 years old, finally learning when it's best to just keep my mouth shut.”

The “Aquino and Abunda Tonight” co-host did not specify what the issue was with Bautista.

During the Friday, June 6 episode of ABS-CBN late news program “Bandila,” Bautista was asked by Karen Davila during the program's Yes or No segment, “Nagkarelasyon ba kayo ni Kris Aquino?”

The Quezon City mayor said, “Yes, pero naputol.”

Asked if he loves Kris, Bautista said: “Well, oo.”

“Gusto mo ba kayo pa rin ni Kris Aquino,” Davila asked. “Wala na akong magagawa, e. Hindi na pwede. Hindi na nga pwede,” Bautista said.

“Hindi mo ba liligawan ulit,” Davila asked Bautista. “Hindi na,” he said.

Asked for the reason why their relationship didn't work out, he said: “E, yung mga anak ko, syempre. I love my children.”

The actor-politician also said “yes” when asked if he wants to get married in the future and “no” when asked if he's in favor of Aquino joining politics.

Kris admitted dating Bautista last April, but revealed days later that they are not a couple but are best of friends.

Bong to PNoy: End political division By Louis Bacani (philstar.com) | Updated June 9, 2014 - 4:51pm


Senator Ramon Revilla Jr. ALBERT CALVELO/PRIB /SENATE POOL

MANILA, Philippines — Beleaguered Senator Ramon Revilla Jr. on Monday called for unity and an end to political bickering over the pork barrel scam.

In his televised privilege speech, Revilla challenged President Benigno Aquino III to unite the country after the political division created by the scam that implicated several government officials.

"Tama na po ang awayan. Tigilan na ang politika ng paghihiwalay," the senator said.

"Lead this country not with hatred but with love. Lead the country with unity and not partisanship. Push our nation's interest and not political agenda," Revilla told Aquino.

Revilla said the pork barrel scam has already affected many people and the President should instead focus on solving the country's problems in his remaining years in office.

"Napakarami na pong mga tao ang nabanggit sa usaping PDAF. Napakarami na pong nasasaktan. napakarami nang nasira ang buong pagkatao dahil sa pagbato ng putik," Revilla said.

"Jailing your oppositors should not be the only achievement and legacy you will be leaving behind," he told the President

Revilla allegedly amassed P224 million in kickbacks through the diversion of his pork barrel funds to bogus foundations of businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles.

On Friday, the Office of the Ombudsman filed plunder charges against him and Senators Juan Ponce Enrile and Jinggoy Estrada.

Maintaining his innocence, Revilla said he is ready to defend himself in court.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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