Rappler Newscast | January 21, 2013
Today on Rappler.
- Senate President Enrile offers to quit, but 11 senators vote to keep him in power.
- A Tubbataha park official says the US Navy ship stuck in the reef ignored warnings to avoid the area.
- 6 Filipinos are confirmed dead in the Algeria gas field hostage crisis.
Story 1: ENRILE OFFERS TO QUIT, BUT 11 SENATORS REJECT MOVE
Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile offers to quit his post, but he retains Senate leadership after 11 senators reject the motion.
In a privilege speech, Enrile slams his 4 critics for what he calls a "disinformation campaign" that quote-"successfully poisoned the minds of the public."
He is referring to the controversy over his decision to exclude Senators Miriam Santiago, Pia Cayetano, Alan Peter Cayetano and Antonio Trillanes from receiving additional funds last December.
The controversy fueled talks of a plot to unseat Enrile.
Hours before Enrile's speech, Trillanes tells reporters he only needed 4 more senators to complete the 13 votes needed to oust the senate president.
Enrile says he offered to quit because the Senate is being dragged into the issue.
JUAN PONCE ENRILE, SENATE PRESIDENT: Of threats and coup rumors, we have had enough. I am way too old to be threatened by anyone, least of all by cowards and hypocrites. I therefore move that the position of Senate President be declared vacant.
Of the 16 senators present, 11 voted to reject Enrile's proposal to quit, including Enrile’s key allies, Tito Sotto and Panfilo Lacson.
Only Enrile, Trillanes, and Koko Pimentel vote in favor of the move to declare the position vacant.
But Trillanes says of Enrile’s offer to quit, “He knew most of the senators were absent.”
Senators Ferdinand Marcos Jr and Joker Arroyo abstain.
Enrile says he will repeat his motion when all senators are present.
In his speech, Enrile had harsh words for Santiago, calling her his “most cantankerous critic” and questioning her reactions to criticism from Lacson.
JUAN PONCE ENRILE, SENATE PRESIDENT: When it was her turn to be challenged regarding her own integrity and to be called “a hypocrite par excellence,” it seems that alone was enough to pose a danger to her own health and whatever remains of her equanimity and sanity. The very thought that this position is for sale repulses me truly. But apparently, Senator Santiago thinks everything and everyone here has a price tag.
Story 2: UNA: ELECTIONS A POPULARITY CONTEST
Resigned Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri and the United Nationalist Alliance defend their early start in campaign ads and sorties, saying publicity is key to winning elections.
MIGUEL ZUBIRI, UNA SENATORIAL CANDIDATE: If you ask us does public work, it does. Unfortunately, unless we change our system, running for Senate is a popularity contest.
The opposition coalition says it supports stricter Comelec rules for the campaign period but says raising awareness before the start of the campaign period is necessary.
UNA Secretary-General and Navotas Representative Toby Tiangco reiterates the Supreme Court already ruled there is no prohibition on premature campaigning.
TOBY TIANGCO, UNA SECRETARY-GENERAL: We cannot match the government machinery, We cannot match the government resources. So, anong gagawin namin? We start early, di ba?
Story 3: FRINGE CANDIDATES: ABOLISH PORK BARREL
They are called the fringe candidates -- the candidates with no name recall and little media exposure.
But Natashya Gutierrez reports, that didn’t matter to UP students who were eager to know their candidates.
Candidates who participated in #AngPagsusuri, a senatorial debate at the University of the Philippines are unanimous: they want to abolish pork barrel -- officially known as the Priority Development Assistance Fund.
Baldomero Falcone of the Democratic Party of the Philippines feels strongly about getting rid of cash given to congressmen from government funds to finance local projects.
BALDOMERO FALCONE, DEMOCRATIC PARTY OF THE PHILIPPINES: We will work to eliminate pork barrel because that is the root of political dynasties. There should be no pork barrel at all. No ifs and buts about it.
Most of the candidates who attend #AngPagsusuri are not affiliated with a major political party.
They're the so-called alternatives to better-entrenched politicians, or to cynics, fringe candidates.
They are grilled on issues about electoral reform, foreign affairs and the economy.
But for the candidates, none of whom are re-electionists, funds or gifts given to lawmakers is the hottest topic.
They are also against cash gifts like the P1.6 million the Senate President gave senators over the holidays.
The candidates say the function of a senator is clear and it does not require discretionary funds.
MARWIL LLASOS, ANG KAPATIRAN: Alam ko ang function ng senador, ang function ng legislation, hindi po ako after sa pork barrel. Walang binabanggit na maging kontratista.
Unafraid, candidates voice their opinions.
The students appreciate the effort, expressing disappointment with more popular senators who snubbed their forum.
KIMBERLY ALMEJEDA, STUDENT: Sayang. Sayang yung opportunity, kasi maraming isko at iska na pumunta sana para malaman yung plans nila kaya ayun, sayang yung opportunity.
The candidates are unpopular bets -- ready to make unpopular choices.
They may not win, but with little political experience and no alliances to alienate, they offer refreshing ideas that may well expand the minds of young voters.
Natashya Gutierrez, Rappler, Manila.
Story 4: STRANDED US NAVY SHIP 'IGNORED WARNINGS'
A Tubbataha park official says the US Navy minesweeper stuck inside the reef since last week ignored warnings to avoid the area.
Marine park chief Angelique Songco says rangers radioed the USS Guardian to warn it was nearing the reef Thursday, but the ship captain insisted they raise their complaint with the US embassy.
Songco says shortly after the warning, the 68 meter ship got stuck on part of reef, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
On Sunday, the Philippine military says the ship damages more coral after strong wind and current turned the ship around.
Around 17 meters of the US Navy minesweeper's hull are now aground, 7 meters more than before.
Transportation Secretary Jun Abaya says the government will conduct its own probe and damage assessment.
He says they will verify the US Pacific Fleet's claim that faulty navigational charts caused the ship to veer off course.
The US Navy apologizes Sunday for the incident.
Story 5: DFA: 6 FILIPINOS KILLED IN ALGERIA
Foreign affairs spokesman Raul Hernandez says 6 Filipinos are confirmed dead in the Algeria gas field hostage crisis.
Hernandez says the Filipinos' deaths were --quote 'a direct result of the hostage taking incident in the area and mostly by gunshot wounds and the effects of the explosions.'
The identities of the Filipino fatalities have not yet been released to the public.
Hernandez adds 4 other Filipinos held hostage remain missing.
Some foreign governments criticize Algeria for their initial raid on the facility saying the move was too hasty.
Hernandez says the Philippines did not condemn Algeria's actions
but stresses the Algerian government informed Philippine authorities the military action was taken to prevent further loss of lives after the militants started executing hostages.
Story 6: OBAMA SWORN IN FOR 2ND TERM
US President Barack Obama takes the oath of office to begin his second term at a simple ceremony Sunday.
The US Constitution dictates his first term ends at noon on January 20.
Obama takes the oath with his right hand raised and his left on a family Bible held by his wife Michelle.
In a tweet, Michelle Obama says, "Barack just took the official oath at the @WhiteHouse & used my grandma's bible for the ceremony. I'm so proud of him."
Vice President Joe Biden is also sworn into his second term by Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor.
Obama will repeat the oath in a public ceremony Monday.
His senior aide says the president will deliver a --quote “hopeful” inaugural address to a crowd of 500,000 -- much smaller than in his first address in 2009.
Story 7: THE wRap: YOUR WORLD IN ONE READ
At number 5, More than the double helix in the molecule of life, scientists have seen for the first time a quadruple-stranded DNA at work in human cells.
The finding is significant because it could suggest novel ways to fight cancer.
A Cambridge University professor tells BBC News, targeting cells in a dysfunctional state with --quote “synthetic molecules could be an interesting way of selectively targeting those cells that have this dysfunction.”
The professor adds, Pharmaceutical companies can study this and determine whether quadruplexes are --quote “therapeutically viable targets,”
At number 6, The Swiss foreign ministry says 140 countries agree to adopt a treaty limiting the production and use of the health-hazardous mercury.
These countries will be asked to sign the treaty next October in Minamata, Japan, in honor of its residents who have suffered the consequences of mercury contamination.
Poisoning from mercury affects the body’s immune system and can lead to psychological disorders, loss of teeth, and problems with the digestive, cardiovascular and respiratory tracts. It likewise affects development of the brain and nervous system.
At number 7, Kim Dotcom, the indicted Megaupload founder, launches a new file-sharing website in defiance of US prosecutors who accuse him of facilitating massive online piracy.
On Sunday night at his New Zealand mansion, the German-born Dotcom unveils the “Mega” site, which he describes as unstoppable and huge.
He says half a million users registered for Mega in its first 14 hours, suggesting it could be the fastest growing start-up in history.
Prosecutors say Dotcom made tens of millions of dollars compared to the $500 million in copyright revenue that filmmakers and songwriters lost.
And at number 10, The Batmobile used by Adam West in the original TV series of Batman was sold for $4.2 million to a logistics company owner from Phoenix, Arizona Rick Champagne.
He says -quote “It’s dream come true.” He was only 10 years old when the TV series began in 1966.
The car’s design is based on a 1955 Lincoln Futura built in Italy by Ford Motor Company.
It is the first time the Batmobile was auctioned since it was first purchased in 1965 by car customizer George Barris.
Story 8: CEOs SHARE SECRETS TO SUCCESS AT APEC SME SUMMIT
Ever wonder what's the secret to success?
World-famous CEOs who started small and made it big… share their tips with hundreds at the APEC SME Summit in Manila.
Katherine Visconti reports.
Everyone start small, even giants in business.
Tony Tan Caktiong began with two ice cream parlors.
He introduced hamburgers into the menu and now runs the largest fast food empire in the Philippines - Jollibee.
He says success is rooted in a positive mindset.
TONY TAN CAKTIONG, JOLLIBEE FOUNDER AND CEO: If we place no restrictions on ourselves then we are capable of doing anything. If we give more to our customers than they expect then they will keep coming back over and over again.
People told Tony he was crazy but he refused to sell his business when the biggest burger chain in the world entered the local market.
Now Jollibee outsells Mc Donalds in the Philippines.
TONY TAN CAKTIONG, CEO AND JOLLIBEE FOUNDER: If I had no hope I would have sold out the business right then and I wouldn't be standing here in front of you today, instead I would be flipping burgers for you know who, maybe I was naive during those moments but I believed.
He and other world-famous CEOs who started small and made it big share their tips with hundreds at the APEC SME Summit in Manila.
For Filipino Sheila Lirio Marcelo the secret comes from her life experiences.
She and her husband had a baby before they were ready. She was putting herself through school in the United States.
If the day care was closed, she had to bring her baby to class in a backpack.
SHEILA LIRIO MARCELO, FOUNDER CARE.COM: I would be juggling him like this in school. And that pain point I felt. It was real.
She now runs Care-dot-com, the world's largest online care destination where people can find professional caregivers on the net.
She jokes she's in the pain business and it's lucrative since Americans spend 240 billion dollars annually on care.
Doctor Jaime Aristotle Alip runs a leading micro finance firm he started with 20 pesos.
He has a shockingly high 99 point 35 percent repayment rate.
He says his secret is giving loans to women.
Dado Banatao's chip sets are part of almost every personal computer in the world.
He says he is successful thanks to his quality education.
He studied engineering at Stanford.
And then there’s Forbes most powerful woman in wireless--Cher Wang.
Although she was born the daughter of a billionaire, she struck out on her own.
She started a company after designing computer chips in her living room.
She heads HTC one of the fastest growing mobile phone companies and even has a success checklist.
CHER WANG, CHAIRMAN HTC CORPORATION: First follow your inner passion, We must really believe in what we are doing and be happy doing it.
Second is innovation always look for new opportunities.
The CEOs offer tips anyone can apply -- from following your passion, being innovative, offering bang for the buck, and targeting the right audience.
Business people in the audience, like beauty entrepreneur Vicki Belo, say it's advice they will use.
VICKI BELO, BEAUTY ENTREPRENEUR: He said as long as you give the customer more than you can expect, I try to do that but is it more than they actually expect, I think i can improve in that aspect.
The simple messages even resonate with college students.
LEXIE FLORES, DE LA SALLE STUDENT: I think it's about passion really.
Perhaps the biggest message of the forum is that everyone has to start somewhere.
Katherine Visconti, Rappler Manila.
Newscast production staff
|EXECUTIVE PRODUCER / WRITER||Lilibeth Frondoso|
|ASSOCIATE PRODUCER / PUBLISHER||Rodneil Quiteles|
|HEAD WRITER / PROMPTER||Katerina Francisco|
|MASTER EDITOR / PLAYBACK||Vicente Roxas|
|TECHNICAL DIRECTOR / CAMERAMAN||Charlie Salazar|