Rappler Newscast | June 26, 2013
Today on Rappler.
- Only 4 winning senators are cleared by the Commission on Elections to assume office.
- Nine United Nationalist Alliance members are set to join the majority bloc in the House of Representatives.
- Russian president Vladimir Putin says Moscow will not extradite US whistleblower Edward Snowden.
Story 1: ONLY 4 WINNING SENATORS CLEARED TO ASSUME OFFICE
Only 4 incoming senators are cleared by the Commission on Elections to assume office on June 30.
As of Tuesday, Alan Peter Cayetano, Chiz Escudero, Grace Poe, and Cynthia Villar are deemed "fully complied" in the submission of their Statement of Election Contributions and Expenditures or SOCE.
All four senators-elect come from the administration slate Team PNoy.
The other 8 senators-elect yet to comply with campaign expense filings can only assume office if the Senate President will allow them.
Senators-elect Bam Aquino of the Liberal Party, Gringo Honasan of the United Nationalist Alliance, and Loren Legarda of the Nationalist People’s Coalition have also fully complied with requirements, but they cannot assume office until their parties submit all copies of receipts to its contributors and for its expenses.
The last day of submission of SOCEs was on June 13.
A penalty of P1,000 is imposed per day of delay.
Comelec Commissioner Christian Robert Lim says they will write to the Senate President about the non-compliant senators-elect.
Comelec will wait until Saturday for the completion of requirements of the remaining 8 candidates.
The 5 senators-elect who have not yet been cleared by Comelec are Sonny Angara, Nancy Binay, JV Ejercito, Koko Pimentel, and Sonny Trillanes.
Story 2: 9 UNA MEMBERS TO JOIN HOUSE MAJORITY
The opposition United Nationalist Alliance says 9 of its members in the House of Representatives are set to join the majority bloc.
Navotas Rep Toby Tiangco's announcement comes 3 weeks before the start of the 16th Congress, as lobbying for committee chairmanships and memberships heat up.
Tiangco will not be joining his coalition mates.
He says another UNA member, Sarangani Representative Manny Pacquiao, has yet to decide.
Tiangco says Pacquiao wanted to head the committee on aquaculture and fisheries resources but the House leadership turned him down.
In a separate interview, Speaker Sonny Belmonte says he could not accommodate all requests for chairmanships.
Story 3: SC: LANDMARK PARTY-LIST RULING IS FINAL
The Supreme Court bars 3 militant groups from opposing a landmark ruling on the party list.
Supreme Court spokesman Ted Te says this means the ruling is now final.
The Court junks the motion filed by Bayan Muna, Anakpawis, and Gabriela.
The 3 groups request permission to intervene in the case involving party-list group Atong Paglaum Inc, among others, and the Commission on Elections.
In the Atong Paglaum case, the Supreme Court ruled the party list is not solely for marginalized sectors, reversing a decade-old interpretation by the high court.
The Comelec used the Court’s 2001 ruling to disqualify an unprecedented number of party-list groups.
Story 4: DOLE SAYS ACCUSED LABOR OFFICIAL HAS CLEAN RECORD
Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz says Assistant Labor Attache Antonio Villafuerte has no prior record of abusing Overseas Filipino Workers or OFWs in his previous posts abroad.
Three OFWs accuse Villafuerte of being connected with a “sex-for-flight” scheme based in the Philippine Overseas Labor Office in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Last week, Akbayan Rep. Walden Bello exposed the sex-for-flight scheme in the Middle East.
He says embassy officials promised victims they will be prioritized in repatriation in exchange for sexual favors.
But Baldoz says this is the first time the scheme is being linked to Villafuerte.
ROSALINDA BALDOZ, LABOR SECRETARY: Very recently lang siya sa Riyadh but he was once assigned for two years sa Kaohsiung in Taiwan. Wala naman siyang problema doon. (Antonio was assigned in Riyadh very recently but he was once assigned for two years in Kaohsiung, Taiwan and he did not have any problems there.)
Villafuerte has been working for the labor department for 28 years.
Baldoz says Villafuerte will arrive in Manila Thursday night.
She says Villafuerte needs to get a copy of the complaints before he can make a written statement on the allegations.
Story 5: DISAPPOINTED AQUINO SCOLDS NIA FOR POOR PERFORMANCE
A day after scolding the National Irrigation Administration for missing their targets, Malacañang Palace wants to know why the agency performed poorly.
Defending his agency, NIA Administrator Antonio Nangel blames typhoon Pablo -- international name Bopha -- for their failure to meet their targets.
Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda says President Benigno Aquino ordered staff to "verify the explanation" of Nangel.
Lacierda says the Palace also wants a report from NIA explaining their subpar performance.
During the agency’s 50th anniversary, Aquino scolds the agency for failing to meet its 2011 and 2012 targets under the Irrigation Services Development Program.
He says the NIA only irrigated 32,824 hectares in 2011, or 87% of their 37,759 target, while in 2012, it only managed to irrigate 52,372 hectares or 65% of their 81,170 hectare target.
BENIGNO AQUINO III, PHILIPPINE PRESIDENT: Tatapatin ko po kayo: dismayado po pa rin ako, dahil hanggang ngayon, lumalabas na kakarampot pa rin ang pagbabagong nangyayari sa National Irrigation Administration. (I will be honest. I'm dismayed because even today, it's appearing as if the improvements in the National Irrigation Administration are dismal.)
Aquino urges the agency to improve their efforts and help farmers.
BENIGNO AQUINO III, PHILIPPINE PRESIDENT: Hindi pa po huli ang lahat. Sa inyong anibersaryo, nawa’y sumibol ang panibagong pagkakataon upang sama-sama nating mapalago ang kultura ng pagbabagong ating isinusulong sa tuwid na daan. (There is still time. Let your anniversary be the start of another chance to get together and nurture the culture of change we are pushing for in the straight and narrow path.)
The NIA is responsible for irrigation development and management and is mandated to provide farmers a sustainable, irrigation service.
Story 6: PALACE: P18,000 FOR INFORMAL SETTLERS NOT FOR 2016 POLLS
Malacanang says the P18,000 to be given to families who will be relocated from Metro Manila waterways are not part of the Liberal Party's plans for the 2016 presidential elections.
Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte defends Interior Secretary Mar Roxas from concerns the 20,000 families who will receive money for relocation would view it as dole outs.
Roxas is largely expected to be the ruling Liberal Party's presidential bet in 2016.
The Interior Department is tasked to implement the relocation program to move families from danger zones.
It is part of a flood control master plan to solve the country's yearly massive flooding problem brought by typhoons.
Valte says the distribution of money is meant as incentive to illegal settlers to relocate more quickly and use it as startup in their new homes.
She adds, the program will be audited by the Department of Social Welfare and Development.
Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda also slams critics, saying, “Those who feel this is a pain, I pity them. The 'negastars' think everything the government does is wrong.”
Story 7: PUTIN: SNOWDEN STILL AT MOSCOW AIRPORT
Russian President Vladimir Putin rejects calls for the extradition of US intelligence leaker Edward Snowden to the United States and confirms he is still in a Moscow airport transit zone.
The former National Security Agency contractor arrived in Moscow from Hong Kong.
His whereabouts were previously unknown, after he did not board an expected flight for Cuba, where he sought asylum.
On Tuesday, Putin says Snowden is a “free man” and can go “wherever he pleases.”
He adds, “The sooner he selects his final destination point, the better for us and for himself.”
The US urges Russia to expel Snowden, but Putin says Russia only extradites foreign nationals to countries with which it has a formal extradition treaty.
Snowden is wanted by Washington for leaking details of a secret US surveillance program to the press.
The leftist Latin American state of Ecuador says it is considering Snowden’s request for asylum.
Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro also says he would consider an asylum request from Snowden.
Story 8: OFFICIAL: RUDD BEATS AUSTRALIAN PM GILLARD IN LEADERSHIP BALLOT
Former Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd returns to office after defeating Julia Gillard in a do-or-die Labor Party leadership ballot.
He wins 57 votes to Gillard’s 45 votes.
Gillard, the country’s first female leader, earlier challenged Rudd to a leadership ballot on the condition the loser retires from politics.
Australian media say Gillard lost the support of her colleagues after Bill Shorten - who delivered Gillard the prime ministership in 2010 - switched allegiance.
Story 9: THE wRap: YOUR WORLD IN ONE READ
At number 4, US President Barack Obama lays out a broad new plan to fight climate change.
Obama calls for new restrictions on power plants to curb carbon emissions.
He also pledges to push new generation clean energy sources and to lead a fresh global effort to stem global warming.
Officials say the plan will allow the United States to meet a goal of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020.
At number 6, Amnesty International reports homophobia in sub-Saharan Africa reaches "dangerous levels," with more countries passing laws criminalizing same-sex relations.
The rights group says homophobic attitudes and attacks on gays are --quote-- “fueled by key politicians and religious leaders who should be using their position...
to fight discrimination and promote equality."
The report says Africa's strict penal codes were initially imposed by colonial rulers, based on Christian moral values.
Homosexuality is illegal in 38 countries in the region, with South Africa the only country that recognizes gay rights and allows same-sex marriage.
And at number 10, Researchers from the University of Oxford add to the growing body of evidence the color, size, weight and shape of eating utensils influence what people taste.
Their findings tally with previous research for crockery colors, including the discovery that red tends to limit food intake.
In a series of experiments, the team used utensils of different colors, shapes and weight to assess the impact on the perceived taste of the same food among volunteers.
Alternative energy source image from Shutterstock
Steam turbine power plant image from Shutterstock
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|