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CALIFORNIA junks government’s bid to stop Binay’s TRO hearing

THE Court of Appeals (CA) Sixth Division denied on Mon a motion of the Office of Solicitor General to stop the listening to on the restraining order issued in support of Makati City Mayor Jejomar Binay Jr.

During the hearing, the OSG invoked judicial courtesy of an existing petition at the Supreme Court (SC) filed by the Office of the Ombudsman.

Assistant Lawyer General Hermes Ocampo said the SC petition questions the CA’s temporary restraining order on Binay’s six-month preventive suspension order regarding the a graft case.

The Ombudsman said that continuing with the CA proceedings would render moot and academic its petition at the SC.

Binay’s a lawyer Claro Certeza manifested that there is no basis to suspend the proceedings. He cited Rule 65 from the Rules of Court, stating that the court can proceed with the primary case if no TRO was issued on a petition filed using a higher court.

“Since the petition before Supreme Court merely necessary the respondents to comment without having asking upon the quested TRO, then pursuant to the Rules of Court, no reason for this courtroom not to continue, with the proceedings, ” said Certeza.

Upon hearing the arguments from both sides, the Sixth Division ruled in favor of Binay’s camp.

“It’s cleared that unless a TRO or an injunction is released, then the court is mandated in order to proceed with the principal case, ” said Associated Justice Jose Reyes said.

The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) meanwhile requested to be excused from the case, saying it really is merely a nominal party.

The DILG represented by the OSG said that this merely acted as an agent from the Ombudsman in serving the latter’s preventive suspension order on Binay who is being investigated for graft related to the alleged overpricing from the Makati City Hall Building second .

In its petition at the SC, the Ombudsman mentioned that the suspension purchase had been issued on Binay prior to the CA’s issuance of the TRO.

Binay’s plea for a writ of first injunction has been submitted for resolution while oral arguments on the Makati mayor’s contempt plea will be noticed on Tuesday. (Sunnex)

‘No over financing’ for Bangsamoro authorities — Officials

THE Aquino administration is not “over financing” the Autonomous Region within Muslim Mindanao (Armm) and the suggested Bangsamoro government, a member of the authorities peace panel clarified Monday.

Senen Bacani, one of the government peace negotiators with all the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), said there is a need to differentiate the existing budget for Armm from the incremental financing that will be introduced once the draft Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) is handed down.

“Tungkol sa financing, kailangan i-klaro ebenso kung ano ang existing in saka ano ang incremental. Pag-usapan muna natin ang incremental financing because of the Bangsamoro Basic Law. Nakasaad diyan merong special development account. First year, P7 billion and for the next five years P2 billion each, that is a total associated with P17 billion. Tapos ang incremental fund na Bangsamoro Transition Specialist, P1 billion. Iyan lang talaga ang karagdagang gastos [sa] pagpasa ng Bangsamoro Fundamental Law because the other expenses, nandiyan na ‘yan, ” he said.

The Armm meanwhile has an existing budget of P24. 3 billion, that will get an additional P900 million intended for pensions, for a total of P25. 2 billion, he said, noting that in 2016, a “block grant” of P26. 8 billion will replace the annual subsidy to Armm.

“When you say ‘block grant’, it gives you the impression em bago but it is just a new term. It is to replace the annual subsidy to the Armm, which exists within the General Appropriations Act. Makikita sa General Appropriations Act for 2015, P24. 3 billion, magdagdag ka ng P900 million because of the monthly pension fund, that’s P25. 2 billion. Papalitan ‘yan ng block give in 2016 ng P26. 8 billion, ” he said.

Under the BBL, he said, the block give is four percent of 60 percent of the net internal income collections.

“Ang base year niyan 2013. (In) 2013, the estimated net BIR (Bureau of Internal Revenue) internal revenue collection is about P1. 1 trillion—2. 4 percent of the is P26. 8 billion. Kapalit lang ‘yan ‘nung 24. three or more plus 900, so 25. 2, ” said Bacani. “This is just not additional. Projected na ito. inch

“The current Armm budget today is going to be translated into a block grant. Will not mean an increase. Ito talagang karagdagan: Special Development Fund, P7 billion and then P2 billion a year intended for five years starting in 2017. A one-time transition fund associated with P1 billion in 2016, inch Bacani said, denying what critics refer to as a P75 billion extra funding for the Bangsamoro.

He noted which the incremental funding will be “subject to proper accountability and normal bank checks and balances and safeguards”.

Budget Admin Florencio Abad, for his part, said the three components of the Armm budget: the salary of authorities employees (42 percent), maintenance and operating expenses (12 percent), and capital outlay (46 percent).

“Tatlong pinupuntahan at hindi kalakihan ‘yan. Without or with the BBL ay ibibigay ‘yan. Now, it is called the Armm authorities but in the future, if the bill goes by, then it becomes the Bangsamoro authorities. Just to stress those two factors, ” said Abad. (SDR/Sunnex)

PSEi breaks 8, 000 mark

PHILIPPINE shares breached the key 8, 000 level as it climbed to a new all-time intraday high of 8, 007. 98 on Monday, surging by as much as 130. 02 points or 1 . 7 %.

The previous intraday record was seven, 889. 25 on March twenty-seven.

As the Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) did not close above the 8, 500 mark, it still ended in a all-time record of 7, 899. 41, up by 21. 45 points or 0. 3 %. This level eclipsed the record finish posted on March twenty-seven of 7, 877. 96.

“Despite the particular pullback at the end of the session, damaging the 8, 000 mark is an indicator of the confidence level that investors have on the market, ” said PSE president and CEO Hans Sicat.

“This conviction is supported by the existing positive sentiment in local developments as well as in the region as seen by gains in most Asian bourses, inch he added.

The PSEi has broken through new record highs 22 times since the start of the year whilst its year-to-date gain now appears at 9. 3 percent. (SDR/Sunnex)

Aquino’s Lenten message: ‘Be true not only in words, but also in what you do’

LEADER Benigno Aquino III has challenged the Filipinos to be true not only to their words but also in what they do.

It was the President’s Lenten message launched by Malacanang on Monday.

“Ang hamon nga sa atin bilang mga tagasunod ni Hesukristo: Tumotoo tayo hindi lang sa salita, kung hindi sa gawa. Sa patuloy nating ambagan at pagkakaisa, social fear gabay at pagmamahal ng Panginoon, tiyak na pagpapalain tayo ng kinabukasang tunay na makabuluhan social fear bawat isa, ” he mentioned.

Aquino said the public can expect that his administration will continue to follow the straight path.

“Makakaasa po kayo: Sa tuwid na daan, maigting nating sinusulong ang pagtatakwil sa anumang anyo ng katiwalian upang ihatid ang agarang benepisyo sa ating mga kababayan, ” he said.

“Tinatawag tayong gawin ang lahat ng ating makakaya, upang maipamana ang isang lipunan na inuuna ang interes ng nakakarami bago ang sarili. ”

He hoped for a peaceful plus meaningful Holy Week for everyone. (SDR/Sunnex)

Uniformed personnel to get higher allowance

PRESIDENT Benigno Aquino III has signed a joint resolution with Congress, increasing the particular daily subsistence allowance of uniformed personnel from P90 to P150 per day, effective January 1 this season, a Palace official said Monday.

In the press briefing, Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said that the current allowance will be “no longer adequate to meet the basic needs of Filipino military troops and uniformed personnel… in view of the increasing prices of commodities”.

The larger allowance is for all officers, enrolled personnel, candidate soldiers, probationary second lieutenants, cadets and civilian active auxiliaries of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, commissioned and non-commissioned personnel of the Philippine National Police, Bureau associated with Fire Protection, Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, cadets of the Philippine National Police Academy, Filipino Coast Guard, including candidate coastline guard men, and National Umschlüsselung and Resource Information Authority (NAMRIA).

“The amount necessary to implement the provisions of the resolution shall be charged contrary to the savings of the DND (Department associated with National Defense), DOTC (Department associated with Transportation and Communications), DILG (Department of Interior and Local Government), and DENR-NAMRIA (Department of Environment and Natural Resources) for the present year and/or the Miscellaneous Staff Benefits Fund, ” Lacierda said.

Within the succeeding years, the amount shall be included in the annual General Appropriations Act, he or she added. (SDR/Sunnex)

Sandigan upholds freeze order on Estrada’s assets

Drilon: LP not in panic mode

8 hours 46 min ago By vblopez

THE ruling Liberal Party (LP) is just not panicking over the possibility that Chief executive Benigno Aquino III may title an outsider as standard bearer for the 2016 polls, Senate Chief executive Franklin Drilon said Tuesday.

Read More

Kalibo airport opens new sections to accommodate more passengers

IN TIME for the summer rush, the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) has opened new sections of the Kalibo International Airport (KIA) that will accommodate additional 800 passengers at a given time, an official said Mon.

“As always, we expect a high volume of visitors to Boracay in the next couple of months, so the new section will help meet this peak period demand, ” stated Transportation and Communications Secretary Paul Emilio Abaya.

The arrival area of the new wing opened on March twenty six, while the departure area will start working on Tuesday. Ten new check-in counters have been added to the latter area.

The government has spent P44. 3 million in nearly 4, 000-square meter airport expansion.

All domestic flights is going to be transferred to the new wing of the terminal, while international flights will remain in the original portion of the airport.

Abaya also announced the start of regular night flight operations at the gateway airport in order to Northern Mindanao.

“Another piece of good news is that regular evening flights to and from Laguindingan airport started last night, Mar 29. This boosts accessibility for the residents of Cagayan de Oro and neighboring areas, as well as for visitors to the region, ” he said.

After becoming fully equipped for night landing last October, the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) gave airlines the option to schedule their night time flights at the airport. Evening flights formally opened on March twelve when Cebu Pacific Air operated round-trips from Cagayan de Oro to Cebu and Davao. It is going to now offer regular night outings to and from Manila.

An Enhanced operating plus maintenance (O& M) contract – which will require the eventual concessionaire to construct a terminal expansion in addition to operate and maintain the airport – is currently being bid out with the DOTC along with the Davao, Bacolod, Iloilo, and New Bohol Airports.

The New Bohol airport – the first greenfield airport project of the Aquino administration – is another project of the DOTC, which recently awarded the P three or more. 36-billion construction contract to the Japan joint venture of Chiyoda Corporation plus Mitsubishi Corporation.

“Another world-class airport can soon rise on the island associated with Panglao, to cater to the steadily-increasing number of tourists in Bohol. It can be developed as an ‘eco-airport’ or one which features environmentally-sustainable technologies, in line with the province’s eco-tourism branding, ” Abaya stated.

Structure is set to begin before the end associated with summer, and is scheduled to be completed in 2017. It is designed to accommodate a single million passengers annually. (SDR/Sunnex)

Mahathir Mohamad is last of Southeast Asia’s old guards

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — Two of Asia’s best-known strongmen, Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew plus Malaysia’s Mahathir Mohamad, had much in common — a streak associated with authoritarianism, little tolerance for refuse and vision that changed the face of their countries.

But friends they were not, and the two rarely saw eyes to eye. In fact , one of their own only agreements was to move their own countries’ time — which was 7 ½ hours ahead of GMT — forward by half an hour to be in collection with world time zones.

“I am afraid on most other issues we’re able to not agree…. I cannot say I had been a close friend of Kuan Yew, but still I feel sad at their demise, ” Mahathir wrote on his blog on Friday.

With Lee’s dying at age 91, Mahathir remains the final of a generation of old protects left in Southeast Asia, which boomed economically under their authoritarian leadership and came to be known as the “tiger economies. ” Indonesia’s Suharto, spoken in the same breath as these two, died in 2008.

Both Lee plus Mahathir were English-educated leaders, that successfully delivered economic prosperity — to varying degrees — plus gave international prominence to their countries. They were well respected, but dominated with iron fists, curbing municipal liberties and using harsh laws towards political opponents.

Yet Lee and Mahathir leave starkly different legacies using their time in power.

During his 31 many years as prime minister, Lee transformed Singapore, a marshy island investing post with no natural resources, straight into Asia’s richest nation as assessed by GDP per capita, 5 times higher than Malaysia. He smashed corruption at all levels, built the top-notch, efficient bureaucracy, set up a great education system and focused on producing world-class service industries that would be competitive in a global market.

Mahathir, meanwhile, fostered a patronage system by giving away contracts to his cronies, great policies increased bureaucratic red tape. Despite having far more resources and a much bigger workforce, he promoted plus protected inefficient industries such as metal and cars with tariff safety.

“Both men are equally Machiavellian in their strategies. They are both alike in the type of politics they employ but Shelter Kuan Yew achieved much, much more than Mahathir despite having a great deal less resources and capital, ” said Malaysian political analyst Ibrahim Suffian.

Although the two were contemporaries — Mahathir is only two years younger — Lee shot to prominence much earlier. He was already the prime ressortchef (umgangssprachlich) of Singapore when it became indie of colonial ruler Britain within 1963. The same year, the small tropical isle nation joined neighboring Malaya to create the Federation of Malaysia, thinking it needed to be part of a bigger country to survive. Mahathir became a Parliament member in 1964, and that was the first time the two met.

“We crossed swords many time during the debates. Yet there was no enmity, only variations in our views of what was good for the newborn nation, ” Mahathir wrote.

But the federation was a marriage that was doomed to fail. For one, the leaders of Malaysia, who were cultural Malays, were suspicious of Shelter, an ethnic Chinese. Soon ideological and political differences surfaced, plus Singapore was expelled from the federation in 1965, leaving Lee to put his own course and vision that until today defines Singapore.

He ensured that the country ran on meritocracy. He demanded the best prices and many efficient companies handle government projects. Government-linked companies compete for projects with private companies. Ethnic Chinese are a majority in Singapore while Malays and Indians form big minorities, but nobody gets specific preference.

“Despite his autocracy, Lee Kuan Yew was driven with building meritocracy that saw Singapore grew by leaps and bounds, but Malaysia is hobbled by the racial politics and insecurities, ” Ibrahim said.

Mahathir, who became leading minister in 1981, championed an affirmative action program for the nation’s Malay majority, which to this day will be the root of deep disenchantment among the group Chinese and Indians. Mahathir noticed the Malays — with good reason — as downtrodden and offered them privileges in business, education plus housing. He promoted race-based national politics to ensure that his Malay party focused politics. That legacy continues.

Lee experienced criticism for the strict limits upon free speech and public protest he insisted was necessary to keep stability and order in a multiethnic, multi-religious country and promote financial growth in the fledgling country. Although his electoral politics were questionable, his People’s Action Party, or PAP, has members from many races.

“Lee was an unshakeable bulwark against majoritarian tendencies that could have got easily overwhelmed Singapore, ” mentioned Cherian George, a Singapore writer, academic and commentator. “Lee visited the extent of amending the republic’s Constitution to stop any celebration from sweeping into power with no minority support, ” he had written on his blog on Sunday.

Mahathir, the doctor-turned-politician and Malaysia’s fourth leading minister, helped turn the country through an agricultural backwater into a crucial trading nation during his 22-year rule before stepping down in 2003. With the help of massive petroleum and palm oil revenues, he oversaw grand facilities projects such as the Petronas Twin Towers, which at one point had been the world’s tallest; he furthermore built a technology hub, a new capital city and an F1 race track.

He also used a security regulation allowing indefinite detention without trial against political opponents and critics. And unlike Lee, he lost no opportunity to criticize the West.

Singapore’s higher wages, standard of living and merit-based system have drawn tens of thousands of Malaysians, mainly ethnic Chinese, to the city-state. A 2011 World Bank report said more than 1 million Malaysians live abroad that warned the outflow of skilled workers could hurt Malaysia’s economy.

Lee stepped down as prime minister in 1990, but remained a commanding presence in Singapore politics and the region for decades. He also successfully groomed his son Lee Hsien Loong, who became Singapore’s prime ressortchef (umgangssprachlich) in 2004.

Mahathir, however , failed to preserve much clout after he resigned.

These days he is seen by many as a former leader who rails against their successors and bemoans in his blogs the weak governance of a country he once dominated.

A recent blog opinion captured his ever-critical outlook: There may be “something rotten in the state associated with Malaysia. ” (AP)

BOI report: Aquino ‘bypassed’ PNP chain of command

MANILA (Updated) — President Benigno Aquino III committed lapses within judgment during the planning and performance of Oplan Exodus and “bypassed” the Philippine National Police (PNP) chain of command, according to the professional summary of the PNP Board associated with Inquiry report on the Mamasapano incident.

The BOI statement said Aquino gave the go signal to proceed with the “defective” Oplan Exodus, a law enforcement operation to arrest terrorists Zulkifli Rubbish bin Hir, alias Marwan, and Abdul Basit Usman.

The operation was carried out by the PNP Special Action Force (SAF) commandos last January 25 but forty-four troopers were killed in action.

Aquino allowed the involvement of then suspended PNP main Alan Purisima in the planning and execution of the high-stakes operation and kept PNP officer-in-charge Leonardo Espina out of the loop.

Espina was appointed to the PNP’s top post after the Ombudsman ordered the particular preventive suspension of Purisima upon December 5, 2014 over their alleged involvement in the anomalous courier service contract between the PNP and the Werfast documentary agency in 2011.

The BOI statement said Aquino dealt directly along with relieved SAF chief Getulio Napeñas, who presented to him the idea of operation.

“The President exercised his prerogative to deal directly with Napeñas instead of PNP officer-in-charge Leonardo Espina and while (he) has the prerogative to deal directly with any of his subordinates, the act of dealing with Napeñas instead of OIC PNP Espina bypassed the established PNP chain associated with command, ” the BOI statement read.

The statement said Purisima should not have been portion of the operation because of his suspension.

“With respect to the Oplan Exodus, the chain associated with command in the PNP should have already been OIC, CPNP police Deputy Director General Espina (as senior commander) to Napeñas (as immediate commander of SAF), ” the statement said.

Read the full report.

The report said Purisima violated their suspension order and the Special Purchase No . 9851 dated December sixteen, 2014 issued by Espina directing Purisima and other suspended PNP officers to “cease and desist through performing the duties and functions of their respective offices during the pendency of the case until its termination. ”

The BOI noted that Napeñas followed the instructions of the suspended PNP chief not to inform Espina and Interior and Local Government Secretary Manuel Roxas II about Oplan Exodus.

“Napeñas did not effectively supervise, control and immediate personnel, which resulted in heavy casualties of the SAF commandos, ” the particular report said, stressing that the SAF commander is responsible for what his device does or fails to do.

The report added that Napeñas followed the “time-on-target (TOT)” coordination concept of Purisima inspite of the directive of the President to organize with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief of staff Gregorio Pio Catapang prior to the operation.

“The TOT coordination concept adopted by the SAF does not adapt with the established and acceptable functional concept and protocols of the PNP, ” said the report.

During a meeting for that operation, Aquino instructed Napeñas and Purisima to coordinate with AFP but the resigned PNP chief was quoted as saying, “Ako em ang bahala kay Catapang. ”

“The statement associated with Purisima may be construed as an assurance of providing the coordination advised by the President, ” the BOI report said.

The report also noted which the protocols of the established mechanisms, through the Coordinating Committee on the Cessation associated with Hostilities (CCCH) and Ad Hoc Combined Action Group (AHJAG), were not noticed during the planning and execution associated with Oplan Exodus.

The report said that the objective planning of the Oplan Exodus was defective due to the following reasons: (a) poor analysis of the area of operation; (b) unrealistic assumptions; (c) poor intelligence estimate; (d) absence of cease criteria; (e) lack of flexibility in the concept of planning; (f) inappropriate application of time on target; and (g) absence of prior coordination with the Military of the Philippines and AHJAG.

The report said Purisima provided inaccurate information to Aquino about the actual situation on a lawn when he sent text messages to the Commander in Chief stating that will SAF commandos were pulling out and that they were supported by mechanized and artillery support.

The BOI report said the particular artillery support was not delivered since the AFP considered the ongoing serenity process and protocols in the utilization of artillery.

Lack of situational awareness, limited cover and concealment were among the factors that will prevented the backup troops through reinforcing the beleaguered SAF commandos from the 55th Special Action Firm, where the 44 fatalities belong.

The report furthermore noted that operating troops used “defective” radios, which were not created for military-type tactical operations.

“The batteries had poor power-retention due to wear-and-tear. Furthermore, SAF radios were not compatible with AFP radios for interoperability, ” it said.

The BOI report attributed the breakdown associated with command and control at all levels to ineffective and unreliable communication among operating units.

Aside from defective communication products, the BOI found out that a few of the SAF’s M203 grenade launchers were defective. (Sunnex)

22 injured as bus falls directly into Benguet ravine

MANILA — Twenty-two people were hurt after a Victory Liner bus bound for Baguio City fell into a 10-meter ravine in Tuba, Benguet early Tuesday, a police officer said.

Victory Liner said on Twitter those who suffered “minor injuries” were rushed towards the Baguio General Hospital and released on the same day after receiving treatment.

The bus company said the driving force of the bus with body amount 7044, carrying a total of 44 passengers, went out of control around 3: 45 a. m. after avoiding a truck on the other side of the street while plying the Marcos Highway in Sitio Umesbeg, Barangay Taloy Sur.

Police are now investigating the particular incident. (Sunnex)

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