NOY'S CORNER THIS PAST WEEK...
(MINI-READS followed by FULL REPORTS below)

LP COURTING POE AS MAR RUNNING MATE


APRIL 29 ---File photo
 - The ruling Liberal Party is courting Sen. Grace Poe to be the running mate of its presidential standard-bearer, Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas II, LP member and Caloocan City Rep. Edgar Erice said yesterday. “There are no official talks yet, but yes, we are courting her. A Mar Roxas-Grace Poe tandem will be the perfect team and the ticket to beat in May next year,” Erice told a news conference. He said if the daughter of the late movie actor Fernando Poe Jr. agrees to be Roxas’ running mate, she could run for president in 2022 with LP members supporting her. “We could have three consecutive terms of good governance, daang matuwid and economic growth,” he said. He said the vice presidency would prepare Poe for the presidency and running the country. He added that the LP expects to begin formal talks with the senator soon. “If God will bless us, he will give us Mar Roxas and Grace Poe. If he will punish us, he will give us UNA (United Nationalist Alliance led by Vice President Jejomar Binay),” Erice said. The ruling party adopted Poe in its senatorial ticket in the 2013 elections. There are speculations that she is preparing to run for president next year. READ MORE...

ALSO: 11,154 jobseekers found work on Labor Day – DoLE


MAY 4 ---The Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE) reported that 11,154 jobseekers found jobs on Friday, Labor Day, at the 56 job fairs held simultaneously in as many venues all over the country.
“These 11,154 jobseekers were hired on the spot (HOTS) when they visited the job fairs,” Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz said after she received a report on the results of the job fairs from the Bureau of Local Employment (BLE).“This number translates to 20.8 percent HOTS rate, which exceeded our target of 20 percent,” she added. Last year, the DoLE target for HOTS in all its job fairs was only 15 percent.
The hired-on-the-spot rate is arrived at by dividing the number of applicants hired by the number of qualified applicants. The BLE report showed that there were 71,922 job applicants who registered for the 56 job fairs, 32,439 of whom were male and 39,483 were female. READ MORE...

ALSO: And then there were 7: Petilla quits DOE


APRIL 29 --Department of Energy Sec. Jericho Petilla-- file photo.
s–And then there were seven vacancies in the top echelons of government. With national elections barely a year away, President Aquino has found himself with a leaner Cabinet as more officials have offered to quit to prepare for their candidacy. In an interview with reporters at the sidelines of the 26th Association of Southeast Asian Nations Summit in Langkawi, Malaysia, Aquino confirmed that Energy Secretary Jericho Petilla and Bureau of Corrections Director Franklin Bucayu have resigned, but that he had asked them to stay put until replacements for their posts could be found. Petilla had asked to be replaced as early as last year but the President said he had prevailed on him to stay longer. “We’re actually looking at potential candidates to replace him,” Aquino said, adding that Petilla was hesitant at the onset to take on the post vacated by then Energy Secretary Jose Rene Almendras in October 2012. The President said Petilla wanted to spend more time on his business process outsourcing venture in Leyte province and to prepare for next year’s elections. READ MORE...

ALSO: What if Gibo Cojuangco Teodoro, not his cousin Aquino III were president?


MAY 3 ---A 2010 PHOTO OF GIBO: Teodoro graduated from De La Salle University with a degree in Management of Financial Institutions. He also holds a law degree from the University of the Philippines, and a master’s degree from the Harvard Law School in the US. Teodoro topped the bar exams in 1989, becoming one of the youngest bar topnotchers in the country. He also took and passed the New York State Bar exams in 1997.
What if Gilbert Cojuangco Teodoro, not his cousin Benigno Simeon Cojuangco Aquino 3rd, had been elected president in 2010? Many Filipinos increasingly disappointed, if not exasperated with Aquino, wonder how it might have been if “Gibo” Teodoro had won, as he did in most mock elections conducted after presidential forums during the campaign. While frontrunner Aquino avoided those public jousts among rival candidates, former Defense Secretary and Tarlac congressman Teodoro consistently topped the straw polls among audiences who heard several presidentiables debate national issues. Glorianomics to Gibonomics So how might a Gibo presidency have turned out? One big difference between Teodoro and Aquino is their opposite attitudes toward the Gloria Arroyo presidency. Rather than decrying and junking most past policies, Teodoro would have enhanced beneficial ones while revising others.

Like Aquino, he would have kept Arroyo’s fiscal reforms, but unlike his cousin, Gibo might have less objection to new taxes, if warranted. Conditional cash transfers would have continued too, but not at P40 billion a year. Teodoro might have found more productive ways to spend that largesse — like infrastructure for investment and jobs — than monthly stipends useful in swaying poor voters. In 2011 Teodoro would not have stanched government spending like Aquino, in a wrong-headed push to quickly balance the budget, make Arroyo seem profligate, and impress credit rating agencies. With state spending unconstrained under Gibo, that year’s GDP growth would have neared the 7.7 percent of 2010, not plunged to 3.7 percent. Teodoro would have pushed public-private partnerships, but like Arroyo, he would not put up with the delays of Aquino’s PPPs. The bulk are for bidding only this year, despite being touted in Aquino’s very first State of the Nation Address in July 2010. Go figure why Aquino wants to contract over half a trillion pesos of PPPs in the year before elections and the end of his term. READ MORE...

ALSO SWS: More Pinoys prefer peace with MILF


MAY 4 ---Mindanao (AsiaNews/Agencies) – “The Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) is sincere and determined to back efforts to further the peace process Months after the infamous Mamasapano incident, many Filipinos still believe that talking peace rather than waging a war is a “more effective” way of dealing with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). A Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey conducted from March 20 to 23 found that 45 percent of Filipinos prefer peace negotiations with the MILF while only 20 percent believe that the government should undertake military action against the group. The remaining 35 percent said military operations and peaceful negotiations are equally effective. “In 12 national surveys since December 1999, peaceful negotiations have consistently been seen as more effective in dealing with the MILF compared to military operations,” the SWS noted. The survey was conducted amid ongoing controversy surrounding the death of the 44 commandos of the Philippine National Police-Special Action Force in Mamasapano, Maguindanao, last January. But the SWS also noted that those who said peaceful negotiations are more effective declined by 17 points from 62 percent during the same period in 2014. On the other hand, those who prefer military operations rose 11 points from 9 percent, while those who said military operations and peaceful negotiations are equally effective rose six points from 29 percent. Despite the recent drop in March 2015, the ratio of those who prefer peaceful negotiations to those who prefer military operations is two to one, SWS pointed out. READ MORE...
 


READ FULL MEDIA NEWS REPORT:

LP courting Poe as Mar running mate MANILA, MAY 4, 2015 (IPHILSTAR)  By Jess Diaz (The Philippine Star) | Updated April 29, 2015 - 12:00am


WIKEPEDIA photo

MANILA, Philippines - The ruling Liberal Party is courting Sen. Grace Poe to be the running mate of its presidential standard-bearer, Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas II, LP member and Caloocan City Rep. Edgar Erice said yesterday.

“There are no official talks yet, but yes, we are courting her. A Mar Roxas-Grace Poe tandem will be the perfect team and the ticket to beat in May next year,” Erice told a news conference.

He said if the daughter of the late movie actor Fernando Poe Jr. agrees to be Roxas’ running mate, she could run for president in 2022 with LP members supporting her.

“We could have three consecutive terms of good governance, daang matuwid and economic growth,” he said.

He said the vice presidency would prepare Poe for the presidency and running the country.

He added that the LP expects to begin formal talks with the senator soon.

“If God will bless us, he will give us Mar Roxas and Grace Poe. If he will punish us, he will give us UNA (United Nationalist Alliance led by Vice President Jejomar Binay),” Erice said.

The ruling party adopted Poe in its senatorial ticket in the 2013 elections.

There are speculations that she is preparing to run for president next year.

READ MORE...
But Erice said he does not believe these “rumors.”

“She is a very reasonable and very intelligent person. She knows that all the daang matuwid forces have to come together in 2016 to continue President Aquino’s good governance campaign. She knows that it would be difficult to win if you do not belong to the administration or opposition,” he said.

He said President Aquino would campaign hard for administration candidates in 2016 “because that would be the last electoral campaign he would be involved in.”


TRIBUNE

11,154 jobseekers found work on Labor Day – DoLE Written by Mina Diaz Tuesday, 05 May 2015 00:00

The Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE) reported that 11,154 jobseekers found jobs on Friday, Labor Day, at the 56 job fairs held simultaneously in as many venues all over the country.

“These 11,154 jobseekers were hired on the spot (HOTS) when they visited the job fairs,” Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz said after she received a report on the results of the job fairs from the Bureau of Local Employment (BLE).

“This number translates to 20.8 percent HOTS rate, which exceeded our target of 20 percent,” she added. Last year, the DoLE target for HOTS in all its job fairs was only 15 percent.

The hired-on-the-spot rate is arrived at by dividing the number of applicants hired by the number of qualified applicants.

The BLE report showed that there were 71,922 job applicants who registered for the 56 job fairs, 32,439 of whom were male and 39,483 were female.

READ MORE...
Of the registered applicants, 53,751 were qualified and referred for outright interview. Also, 1,405 applicants were referred to the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (Tesda) for further skills training, while 226 were referred to the appropriate DoLE region or bureau for livelihood assistance.

Region 3 has the most number of HOTS, with 2,475, followed by Region 4-A, which registered HOTS of 2,460; and Region 12, which tallied HOTS of 1,434.

In terms of percentages, however, Region 12 registered the highest HOTS with an astounding 52 percent.

Other regions achieved the 20 percent HOTS target in the May 1 labor Day job fairs. These regions are Region 11 (36.7 percent); Caraga 34.3 percent); Region 10 (32.1 percent); CAR (24.2 percent); Region 9 (24.1 percent); Region 3 (23.5 percent); and Region 1 (21 percent).

She also expressed satisfaction that nine out of ten HOTS were for local employment. “Based on the results, applicants were more easily accepted by local employers than by foreign employers,” Baldoz said.

The labor chief emphasized that since the job fairs results were still preliminary, she expects that more applicants will be reported to have been hired this week.

“This optimism is borne out by the number of near-hires, which was a huge 45,225. Near-hires are job applicants who were almost instantly hired, but were not because they may have not brought with them a required document, or were told to come back for further interview or some tests, but basically after complying with the requirements, they will be hired,” she explained.

The BLE report showed that of the 45,225 near-hires, 40,189, or 89 percent, were for local positions, while 5,036, or 11 percent, were for overseas jobs.


INQUIRER

And then there were 7: Petilla quits DOE Gil C. Cabacungan @inquirerdotnet Philippine Daily Inquirer 2:34 AM | Wednesday, April 29th, 2015


Department of Energy Sec. Jericho Petilla.--file photo.

MANILA, Philippines–And then there were seven vacancies in the top echelons of government.

With national elections barely a year away, President Aquino has found himself with a leaner Cabinet as more officials have offered to quit to prepare for their candidacy.

In an interview with reporters at the sidelines of the 26th Association of Southeast Asian Nations Summit in Langkawi, Malaysia, Aquino confirmed that Energy Secretary Jericho Petilla and Bureau of Corrections Director Franklin Bucayu have resigned, but that he had asked them to stay put until replacements for their posts could be found.

Petilla had asked to be replaced as early as last year but the President said he had prevailed on him to stay longer.

“We’re actually looking at potential candidates to replace him,” Aquino said, adding that Petilla was hesitant at the onset to take on the post vacated by then Energy Secretary Jose Rene Almendras in October 2012.

The President said Petilla wanted to spend more time on his business process outsourcing venture in Leyte province and to prepare for next year’s elections.

READ MORE...
“I can promise you that Secretary Petilla will not leave the job if he is not sure it’s in capable hands… But I do recognize that he and other members of the Cabinet also have a right… to advance their own personal plans,” Aquino said.

Senatorial lineup

In a report, Petilla, a former Leyte governor said to be short-listed in the Liberal Party’s senatorial lineup, admitted he was considering next year’s elections. “I can’t stay in this position forever. Eventually, I have to go,” he said.

“If I am serious about (running), it would be difficult to still be here and make preparations (for my campaign). It would be unfair to use my current position, so I can’t have two (posts) at the same time. The moment you declare (your candidacy), you are already a candidate,” Petilla added.

Bucayu cited his failing health and death threats for quitting the administration, Aquino said.

He had already interviewed Bucayu’s replacement, the President said. “He was actually willing to accept the assignment, but I said, think about it [some] more. He should not think he’d have many allies coming in,” he added.

More Cabinet officials are expected to resign in the next few months, as the period for the filing of candidacy for the 2016 elections starts.

The President has yet to fill up the vacancies in the Commission on Elections (Comelec), the Civil Service Commission, and the Philippine National Police.

Hardest to fill

Aquino said he himself wanted the vacancies filled up immediately, but that he could not settle for just anybody. He added that the energy department and the Department of Agrarian Reform were the hardest posts to fill.

The President explained that it was taking him a long time to appoint a permanent PNP director general because he did not want the appointee to come in amid the mudslinging and investigations that preceded the resignation of PNP chief Alan Purisima.

“I want to know if these [allegations] have any basis or are just demolition jobs,” Aquino said.

“I want to be sure [about] the person I would appoint to a sensitive position especially [with] the coming elections. I believe we should use as much time to pick the right [candidate] rather than rush and regret my choice,” he added.

The President said he has also chosen a candidate to fill up the position of Comelec chair, but that his first choice had begged off. His second choice—a young lawyer—was eager to take on the job, but Aquino said he wanted to be doubly sure that the next Comelec head could withstand the intense pressure of a presidential election.

“I hope I’ll be able to fill [these posts] with competent people who will be there to oversee the remaining months prior to the turnover [after the 2016 elections],” he added.

The President refused to name the possible appointees to the vacancies, but described them as “young and full of vim and vigor.”

Newfound relatives

“These people want to know who they will try to influence at the earliest possible time,” he said. “And perhaps some of these people will also be tidying up their affairs before they embark on [their] new assignments,” he added.

Based on the experience shared by a recent appointee, the President said the biggest concern of new hires was suddenly being deluged with newfound relatives and friends.

The President said all Cabinet officials wanted to leave public service, but that others were reluctant to take time off even if they had to for health reasons, like Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario.

“He [needs] some medical [procedures] done, but keeps postponing these despite the pain he has to go through because of his commitment to the job. But I am also a friend and I asked him to take care of his health,” said the President.

While a number of his Cabinet officials and executives were leaving him, Aquino said in jest that he himself had no plans of resigning as he was looking forward to finishing the last 433 days of his term.

First night home on Times St.

“I’m [already] imagining what it would be like to stay on Times [Street]. On my very first night [at home], what would I do? I am already planning it,” the President said.

Aquino said he was “saddened” by the recent resignation of Customs Chief John Phillip “Sunny” Sevilla, although the latter was quoted as blaming political pressures from some officials who had wanted to appoint someone endorsed by the influential Iglesia ni Cristo. Sevilla also mentioned attempts to use the agency as a “milking cow” for the elections as another reason for leaving the post.

Aquino described Sevilla as a “competent” and “not a politician” who made significant contributions during his 16-month stay at the Bureau of Customs.


MANILA TIMES COLUMN

What if Gibo were president? May 4, 2015 9:53 pm Ricardo Saludo by RICARDO SALUDO


A 2010 PHOTO OF GIBO: Teodoro graduated from De La Salle University with a degree in Management of Financial Institutions. He also holds a law degree from the University of the Philippines, and a master’s degree from the Harvard Law School in the US. Teodoro topped the bar exams in 1989, becoming one of the youngest bar topnotchers in the country. He also took and passed the New York State Bar exams in 1997.

What if Gilbert Cojuangco Teodoro, not his cousin Benigno Simeon Cojuangco Aquino 3rd, had been elected president in 2010?

Many Filipinos increasingly disappointed, if not exasperated with Aquino, wonder how it might have been if “Gibo” Teodoro had won, as he did in most mock elections conducted after presidential forums during the campaign.

While frontrunner Aquino avoided those public jousts among rival candidates, former Defense Secretary and Tarlac congressman Teodoro consistently topped the straw polls among audiences who heard several presidentiables debate national issues.

Glorianomics to Gibonomics So how might a Gibo presidency have turned out?

One big difference between Teodoro and Aquino is their opposite attitudes toward the Gloria Arroyo presidency. Rather than decrying and junking most past policies, Teodoro would have enhanced beneficial ones while revising others.

Like Aquino, he would have kept Arroyo’s fiscal reforms, but unlike his cousin, Gibo might have less objection to new taxes, if warranted. Conditional cash transfers would have continued too, but not at P40 billion a year. Teodoro might have found more productive ways to spend that largesse — like infrastructure for investment and jobs — than monthly stipends useful in swaying poor voters.

In 2011 Teodoro would not have stanched government spending like Aquino, in a wrong-headed push to quickly balance the budget, make Arroyo seem profligate, and impress credit rating agencies. With state spending unconstrained under Gibo, that year’s GDP growth would have neared the 7.7 percent of 2010, not plunged to 3.7 percent.

Teodoro would have pushed public-private partnerships, but like Arroyo, he would not put up with the delays of Aquino’s PPPs. The bulk are for bidding only this year, despite being touted in Aquino’s very first State of the Nation Address in July 2010. Go figure why Aquino wants to contract over half a trillion pesos of PPPs in the year before elections and the end of his term.

READ MORE...
Teodoro would not have stopped major public works with no sound basis in law or evidence. The Belgian project to dredge Laguna Lake, the French program to build more roll-on roll-off ports, and the Japanese-funded repair of Luzon flood control facilities damaged by the 2009 Ondoy and Pepeng storms — these projects would have gone ahead, having passed rigid economic and legal vetting.

Thus, when typhoons hit Luzon in 2011, there would have been far less flooding. And Laguna Lake would have absorbed more rain runoff starting mid-2012, when dredging would have been completed. Plus: taxpayers would not face a looming P6-billion bill due to legal action over the arbitrary stopping of the project.

Teodoro, who has a University of the Philippines law degree and a Master of Laws from Harvard, would never put the government in such an expensive, legally dubious hole. That’s another big difference between the Cojuangco cousins: One learned in leading institutions to know and follow the law. The other not only lacks legal training, but also enjoys video games in which there are countless “cheats” to win.

Respecting law and institutions Thus, Gibo’s first Executive Order would not be the creation of a so-called “Truth Commission” targeting the past government, in violation of equal protection under the law. If pressured to probe his predecessor, he would still see no need to create a new body. If the Ombudsman was taking too long, the Presidential Commission on Good Government could be tasked to investigate, as Aquino’s own legal adviser had urged.

Nor would Teodoro have meddled in the Oakwood Mutiny case already in court for six years, so Senator Antonio Trillanes 4th could join the administration camp. And Gibo would not have held back the Justice Department from pursuing the Dacer-Corbito murder case against fugitive Panfilo Lacson, just to have another senator in his pocket.

Respect for the justice system would also keep Teodoro from publicly commenting on court cases, especially constitutional issues before the Supreme Court. And if there were adverse rulings, he would never have openly debated with the magistrates or let Congress squeeze them with impeachment threats and judicial fund inquiries.

Gibo, of course, would not brook even greater illegalities than meddling with due process. He would not have concocted the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) diverting funds from budgeted expenditures to unbudgeted ones, or allowed a suspended Philippine National Police chief to violate the Ombudsman’s order by overseeing a hugely perilous commando assault into rebel territory.

Steeped in the democratic principles underpinning the Constitution, Teodoro would find it utterly repugnant to bribe lawmakers into passing pet legislation or signing articles of impeachment without reading them. Nor would he offer pork barrel and DAP to senators in order to convict the Chief Justice.

Building true peace and security Legal scruples would also make it extremely unlikely for Teodoro to get into constitutionally infirm agreements. Negotiations with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front would have made sure to avoid all failings of the 2008 Memorandum of Agreement on Ancestral Domain, and not to add more illegal provisions.

Gibo would have consulted senators about any possible pact to ramp up US military deployment and give it access to Philippine bases. Moreover, he might have continued the past policy of joint undertakings with rival claimants in the South China Sea, which could have avoided territorial frictions cited by Aquino in letting in more American forces.

As for fighting corruption, both Teodoro and Aquino had clean reputations. Assuming he would not bribe Congress, Gibo would have no reason to treble pork barrel to P20 billion a year, and mobilize P150 billion in DAP on top of that.

And with his high-level security knowledge, Teodoro would know better than to let political friends boost smuggling five-fold to $19 billion a year — and let in a flood of guns and drugs, which fueled the doubling of crime under Aquino.

Having seen how media’s darling Aquino has misruled the country, Filipinos should look beyond the headlines to solid credentials and performance in choosing the next leader.

But we won’t.


MANILA TIMES

SWS: More Pinoys prefer peace with MILF May 4, 2015 10:18 pm by CATHERINE S. VALENTE REPORTER


Mindanao (AsiaNews/Agencies)
– “The Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) is sincere and determined to back efforts to further the peace process

Months after the infamous Mamasapano incident, many Filipinos still believe that talking peace rather than waging a war is a “more effective” way of dealing with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

A Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey conducted from March 20 to 23 found that 45 percent of Filipinos prefer peace negotiations with the MILF while only 20 percent believe that the government should undertake military action against the group.

The remaining 35 percent said military operations and peaceful negotiations are equally effective.

“In 12 national surveys since December 1999, peaceful negotiations have consistently been seen as more effective in dealing with the MILF compared to military operations,” the SWS noted.

The survey was conducted amid ongoing controversy surrounding the death of the 44 commandos of the Philippine National Police-Special Action Force in Mamasapano, Maguindanao, last January.

But the SWS also noted that those who said peaceful negotiations are more effective declined by 17 points from 62 percent during the same period in 2014.

On the other hand, those who prefer military operations rose 11 points from 9 percent, while those who said military operations and peaceful negotiations are equally effective rose six points from 29 percent.

Despite the recent drop in March 2015, the ratio of those who prefer peaceful negotiations to those who prefer military operations is two to one, SWS pointed out.

READ MORE...
On issues about peace efforts compared to December 2014, the administration’s net rating is down by 18 points from +40 on defending the country’s territorial rights; down by 18 points from +15 on reconciliation with Muslim rebels; and down by 20 points from +17 on reconciliation with communist rebels.

The SWS also noted 48 percent of Filipinos were satisfied, 23 percent neither satisfied nor dissatisfied and 29 percent dissatisfied with the national government’s performance in general.

This resulted in a net satisfaction rating of +19 (percent satisfied minus percent dissatisfied), which the SWS considers “moderate.”

It was a 15-point fall and a one-grade downgrade from the “good” +34 (58 percent satisfied, 29 percent dissatisfied) in December 2014.

The SWS considers scores of +70 and above as “excellent”; +50 to +69 “very good”; +30 to +49 “good”; +10 to +29 “moderate”; +9 to -9 “neutral”; -10 to -29 “poor”; -30 to -49 “bad”; -50 to -69 “very bad”; and -70 and below “execrable.”

The question on effective means in dealing with the MILF is part of a module on the Mamasapano incident and the Bangsamoro Basic Law, which were included in the survey by the SWS in partnership with The Asia Foundation.

Months after the infamous Mamasapano incident, many Filipinos still believe that talking peace rather than waging a war is a “more effective” way of dealing with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

A Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey conducted from March 20 to 23 found that 45 percent of Filipinos prefer peace negotiations with the MILF while only 20 percent believe that the government should undertake military action against the group.

The remaining 35 percent said military operations and peaceful negotiations are equally effective.

“In 12 national surveys since December 1999, peaceful negotiations have consistently been seen as more effective in dealing with the MILF compared to military operations,” the SWS noted.

The survey was conducted amid ongoing controversy surrounding the death of the 44 commandos of the Philippine National Police-Special Action Force in Mamasapano, Maguindanao, last January.

But the SWS also noted that those who said peaceful negotiations are more effective declined by 17 points from 62 percent during the same period in 2014.

On the other hand, those who prefer military operations rose 11 points from 9 percent, while those who said military operations and peaceful negotiations are equally effective rose six points from 29 percent.

Despite the recent drop in March 2015, the ratio of those who prefer peaceful negotiations to those who prefer military operations is two to one, SWS pointed out.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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