1st-Apluma!: Worse than Marcos PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 14 November 2011 15:07

First order, let’s take a look on the headlines last week:
On RH Bill — Senators opposed to the controversial Reproductive Health (RH) bill are likely to come up with their own version of the measure, Sen. Edgardo Angara disclosed yesterday. “I heard, that they are formulating an alternative bill so that a policy statement can be made by our country,” Angara said to reporters when he appeared as guest in the weekly news forum at the upper chamber. (Tribune-p3)
P-Noy Impeachment — The first impeachment complaint against President Benigno Aquino III has been “returned to sender.” The House of Representatives sent the complaint back to lawyer Oliver Lozano as it failed to meet the constitutional requisite of a verified complaint duly endorsed by a House member. In a letter to Lozano dated Oct. 27, and released to the media on Thursday, House Secretary General Marilyn Babarua-Yap cited the complaint’s noncompliance with relevant provisions of the Constitution and the House rules of procedure in impeachment proceedings. (PDI-p9 )
On Presidency — Former Human Rights lawyer Sen. Joker Arroyo expressed alarm over what he said is an “unhealthy trend” the Aquino administration has been adopting in treating issues concerning former president, Rep. Gloria Arroyo. Senator Arroyo described the Aquino administration as worse than the Marcos regime, citing President Aquino’s father, the late Sen. Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino, as an example in pointing out the human rights issues when the latter’s health became a primordial concern of the then government. (Tribune-p1)
On CGMA — Jose Miguel “Mike” Arroyo has challenged President Aquino to go with him and his wife, former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, so they could prove that they had no intention of eluding justice by seeking medical treatment abroad for the latter’s degenerative bone disease.  In an exclusive interview with the Inquirer on Wednesday night, Arroyo said the Aquino administration was “persecuting, harassing and oppressing” members of his family. “If he wants, the President can just come with us. Then, after [my wife’s medical procedure abroad], we can all return home,” he said in a mild voice. (PDI-p1)
On Arroyo — President Aquino has exempted the mining industry from the total log ban in exchange for obligating the industry to take part in the National Greening Program launched early this year. Leo Jasareno, Mines and Geociences Bureau (MGB) national director, said  yesterday that making decisions like this was the Aquino administration’s way of making industry regulations more efficient and mining more acceptable to the public. The Chamber of Mines of the Philippines requested the government to ease legal obstructions to its members’ operations. (PDI-p1)
APEC Summit — President Benigno Aquino 3rd will leave this afternoon for Honolulu, Hawaii, to attend the 19th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders’ Week scheduled from November 8 to 13. President Aquino will be joined by a lean delegation led by Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario, Transportation and Communications Secretary Manuel Roxas 2nd, Trade and Industry Secretary Gregory Domingo, Energy Secretary Jose Rene Almendras and Palace spokesman Edwin Lacierda. Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima, who will also join Mr. Aquino in Hawaii, is currently abroad, Lacierda said during a press briefing in Malacañang on Thursday. (Mla Times-p2)
CCP scores P-Noy — The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) has scored the administration of President Aquino for not filing a single case against former President, Pampanga Rep. Gloria Arroyo despite so much noise and after more than 500 days in office. In a statement, the CPP noted that the Department of Justice’s (DoJ) denial of Arroyo’s request to travel abroad to seek medical treatment only opened the possibility that the former President could leave the country for good and evade criminal proceedings following the filing for a temporary restraining order before the Supreme Court. (Tribune-p2)
On The Arroyos — Justice Secretary Leila de Lima  said she had asked the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) to look into “unverified information” that the government of the Dominican Republic had provided “passports” to former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and her family. Speaking with reporters, De Lima raised the possibility that Arroyo and her husband, Jose Miguel “Mike” Arroyo, might seek political asylum if the Supreme Court allowed them to leave for abroad. “Anything is possible. They can always do that,” she said. (PDI-Banner)
National interest — Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda yesterday said it is of “national interest” to ensure the health of former president and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Arroyo, and reiterated the Palace’s offer to fly in foreign medical experts for her. (Malaya-Banner)
Crass gossip — Claiming to be “concerned” over reports stemming from text messages that probably are spread by the Malacanang communications text brigade team, that the embattled former president, Rep. Gloria Arroyo, has already been granted asylum by the Dominican Republic, Justice Chief Leila de Lima raised the level of crass gossip to front page media reports by saying that she will be verifying these reports as these cannot be ignored. (Tribune-Banner)
Mental asylum — A “mental asylum” is the place for rumor-mongers, especially those who spread the “canard” of Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo seeking asylum in the Dominican Republic, a lawyer for the Arroyos said yesterday. Ferdinand Topacio, legal counsel of former first gentleman Jose Miguel Arroyo, described the reports of the Arroyos seeking asylum as a “canard being circulated by lackeys of the present administration.” He called the reports “the latest in a long line of lies being peddled in order to muddle the issue regarding the violation of civil and political rights of the Arroyo family.”  (Philstar-p1)
On The Armed Forces — President Aquino’s appointment of Maj. Gen. Emmanuel Bautista as commanding general of the 86,000-strong Philippine Army has drawn some questions on how he would lead officers in the field who are mostly his upperclassmen in the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) where seniority is “sacred.” As Army chief, Bautista has supervision of the 10 Infantry Division (ID) commanders throughout the country and all major support units of the Army such as the Army Support Command (Ascom), Light Armor Division (LAD) and the Special Operations Command (Socom), among other units. At present, all division commanders except one, 6th ID commander Brig. Gen. Rey Ardo, are senior than Bautista, a member of the PMA Class of 1981 where Ardo also belongs. (Tribune-p1)

On The Peacemakers — Secretary Teresita Deles, apparently smarting from being found that her office had given huge doleouts to past and present armed enemies of the state, on Thursday vowed transparency in spending millions more in funds for the peace process. The alms—P5 million to separatists from the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and P31 million to former urban assassins from the supposedly now-defunct Alex Boncayao Brigade under the New People’s Army—had been criticized by lawmakers for making it a breeze for these rebels to turn the gun on their benefactors at present. (Mla Times-p1)

Amateur peace negotiators — Sen. Francis Escudero yesterday branded government chief peace negotiator Marvic Leonen and Peace Process Adviser Teresita Deles as amateurs and weak in presenting the stand of the government in peace talks with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). “They seem to be amateurs in dealing with the peace negotiation as what they’ve done in previous months,” Escudero said over RMN radio here. He described the strategies of Deles and Leonen as a failure, which caused the deadly incident in Al-Barka, Basilan last month. (Philstar-p4)

On Ghost Borrowers — Ghosts of the world united but only one was spirited enough to successfully get billions in loan from the Development Bank of the Philippines [DBP] of old. Nearly three years ago, the immediate past management of the DBP granted a $90-million (P3.8-billion) loan that no one had applied for and later released the money to a firm controlled by businessman Roberto Ongpin, a lawmaker revealed on Thursday. (Mla Times-p1)

On Mining — Former Foreign Secretary Delia Albert said she used to market the potentials of Philippine mining in her trips as presidential envoy on mining, never realizing that her “hardest job would be convincing Filipinos that mining can be good [for them].” So  yesterday, the veteran diplomat said she made sure five ambassadors of countries enriched by mining were around at the ongoing 58th Annual National Mine Safety and Environment Conference at Camp John Hay here. (PDI-p8)

On Tax Collection — The local gold trade may just prove to be a gold mine for government revenue collectors. The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) yesterday charged a Bulacan-based gold trader with failing to pay over P804 million in income taxes for four years. Charged before the Department of Justice (DOJ) with multiple counts of violation of the National Internal Revenue Code was Virgilio Ipapo Ocampo, of Meycauayan, Bulacan. (PDI-p2)

On Pacman — Manny Pacquiao is looking at life beyond boxing, pondering the day when his fights in the ring are done and his political battles intensify. The 32-year-old southpaw defends his WBO welterweight title on Saturday (Sunday in Manila) against Mexico’s Juan Manuel Marquez, completing the 17th year of a pro boxing career that launched his rise into an Asian sport icon. “I’m starting to think of my future life outside boxing,” Pacquiao said. “(I will fight) a couple more years. I’m still going to fight. I have a number in mind (when I will retire) but I won’t tell you.” (PDI-p10)

On The Marcoses — The Commission on Audit (COA) on Wednesday called on the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) to account for some $50.481 million in forfeited Marcos wealth funds supposedly deposited in an escrow account at the Philippine National Bank (PNP). COA is concerned that the money may have been misused during the Arroyo administration. While state auditors are not really asking if the money is still there, the audit team expressed worries over information that part of the same has been used for questionable travels since 2004. (Philstar-p3)

On The Revillas — “No one can touch us.” This was the declaration of Engin Tuna Bulbuloglu, the Turkish husband of Ma. Ramona “Mara” Bautista, who fled to Turkey after she was implicated in the murder of her brother Ramgen. “Nothing will come out of this incident. Everything is merely made up of allegations,” Bulbuloglu told Turkish daily, Vatan. An English translation was carried on the Hurriyet Daily News website on Tuesday. (PDI-p1)

On Foreign Affairs — US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will visit Manila from Nov. 15 to 16 for the 60th anniversary of the US-Philippines Mutual Defense Treaty, the State Department announced yesterday. “Her visit there will underscore the administration’s ongoing broader efforts to reaffirm and broaden our alliances,” said State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland. (Philstar-p6)

UK to invigorate toes with PH — The United Kingdom seeks to “reinvigorate” ties with the Philippines, reinforcing economic interaction, political partnership and people-to-people linkages, with particular emphasis on democracy and human rights. This was conveyed by Britain’s Minister of State Jeremy Brown at a meeting with Philippine officials in London last week where he reaffirmed his government’s continuing efforts to bolster ties with Manila. (Tribune-p1)

BY Ismael Amigo, Sr.

On Business — First Metro Investment Corp. (FMIC) registered a consolidated net income of P1.8 billion in the nine months to September this year, 28.5 percent higher than the P1.4 billion reported in the same period in 2010. FMIC, the investment bank arm of the Metrobank Group, is one of the country’s leading non-bank financial institutions. (Philstar-pB3)

IMI reports profit decline — Ayala-led chip maker Integrated Micro-Electronics Inc. (IMI) reported a 67 percent profit decline in the nine months ending September this year to $1.6 million as higher material and labor costs squeezed margins. (Philstar-pB3)

Except perhaps of a Manny Pacquiao win yesterday, all of the above news items offer nothing but of gloom. And we are not sure yet, of this writing yesterday if indeed Mannny Pac pulled off the rug anew from under the feet of Juan Miguel Marquez. Otherwise, it will be a day of national mourning.

We are wondering why the Administration of President Noy just cannot let go of or allow CGMA to seek medical attention abroad. Or, could it be that P-Noy’s advisers are the only ones who are hell-bent on crucifying CGMA?

CGMA’s son Mikey Arroyo, whom people in the government are not so happy about his way of winning a seat in Congress, even offered P-Noy or any of his lackeys to come with them as his mom seeks medical treatment abroad.

So why just can’t they allow CGMA vis-à-vis that personal offer?

We all have an inherent right to travel whether for fun, pleasure or for medical treatment abroad but DOJ Sec. Leila de Lima is simply playing blind to all this.
Now she’s on the hot trail of digging up the veracity of CGMA’s purported Dominican Republic political asylum yarn.

A simple delaying tactic you would say and that is not helping a bit for the Aquino Administration to sway the public sentimentality.

The thing here is, each passing day is proving for P-Noy to be worse than Ferdinand Marcos.

At least, FM allowed his father, the late Ninoy Aquino, to seek medical attention abroad.

For all intents and purposes, Ninoy Aquino was considered a friend of FM and an arch nemesis in the field of politics. 1st-APLUMA (1st-Alliance of Provincial Newspaper Publishers) Email esns03@yahoo.com Mobile 0915-5517486