Malacanang - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Malacanang

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'A man of vision and foresight': PH gov’t mourns passing of Oman leader

Jan 11, 2020 - 7:42 PM

'Sultan Qaboos was a man of vision and foresight who transformed his country into a modern and stable nation it is known today,' the palace writes of the Arab world's longest-serving leader, who died on January 10

SULTAN QABOOS. In this file photo taken on November 3, 2004, Oman's late ultan Qaboos attends the funeral of Emirati president Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan al-Nahayan in Abu Dhabi. - Sultan Qaboos, who ruled Oman for almost half a century, has died at the age of 79, the Omani news agency said January 11, 2020. Photo by Rabih Moghrabi/AFP

Will PH military be China's unwitting accessory to data breach?

Dec 21, 2019 - 3:10 PM

Experts say Dito Telecommunity can allow China to mine data of Filipinos, and the Philippine military would be helping it by letting the telco build cell sites in its camps and bases

Military report confirms spying risks in deal with China-backed telco

Dec 20, 2019 - 2:36 PM

The China-backed telco’s equipment can indeed be used to spy on the military, says the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ own risk analysis of the ‘co-location’ deal

Fear of making decisions

Dec 18, 2019 - 8:00 PM

There are irreparable costs

Bantag tries to slay Bilibid's old monsters, Duterte-style

Dec 16, 2019 - 8:52 PM

Part 3: Gerald Bantag literally bulldozed his way to get rid of shanties inside Bilibid on his first week. Will it work in fixing congestion and criminality? We take an inside look.

DEMOLTION. BuCor chief Gerald Bantag leads the demolition of illegally-built shanties inside the New Bilibid Prison. Photo courtesy of BuCor

Unqualified GCTA returnees lose jobs, are detained for months

Dec 15, 2019 - 9:12 PM

Part 2: Even if many are not heinous crime convicts, former inmates turn themselves in to the Correctional Institution for Women out of fear of the President. Administrative lapses make them worry they won’t be home for Christmas.

Bilibid returnees die in Duterte administration blunders

Dec 14, 2019 - 8:26 PM

Part 1: Massive errors in record-keeping and ill-prepared facilities keep thousands in jail for months, and kill at least 4 convict returnees. They regret heeding the President's call.

[OPINION] The lawless Duterte presidency

Dec 04, 2019 - 10:00 AM

The Philippines has been transformed into a wilderness soaked in blood

Multi-billion SEA Games 2019 fund follows Cayetano where he goes

Nov 29, 2019 - 10:35 PM

The money trail shows SEA Games organizing committee chair Alan Peter Cayetano has control over the budget regardless of which agency the money is lodged under

House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano, chairman of the organizing committee of the 30th SEA Games, delivers his speech before foreign dignitaries, sponsors, and Filipino athletes during their site visit on October 16, 2019 at New Clark City. File photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

[PODCAST] New Clark City: May anomalya ba?

Nov 29, 2019 - 4:38 PM

Paano nga ba nakalusot ang kwestyonableng deal na pinangunahan ng Bases Conversion and Development Authority? Pakinggan sa podcast na ito nila business reporter Ralf Rivas, justice reporter Lian Buan, at researcher-writer Jodesz Gavilan.

The Athletics Stadium at the New Clark City in Capas, Tarlac, on November 28, 2019, gets ready for the 30th Southeast Games. Photo by Josh Albelda/Rappler

How BCDA's multi-billion New Clark deal slipped through

Nov 26, 2019 - 12:29 PM

Conclusion: EXCLUSIVE: The favorable legal opinion of the OGCC being cited by BCDA was issued only in October 2018 – 8 months after the deal was already signed, skirting several rules, including BCDA's own guidelines

NEW CLARK SPORTS. The Aquatic Center in New Clark City in Capas, Tarlac, the site of the swimming competition for the 30th SEA Games. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

PH gov't hits Bette Midler as 'incompetent, gullible' over foreign leaders tweet

Nov 24, 2019 - 5:10 PM

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo tells Hollywood actress and singer Bette Midler to 'learn' from the lyrics of her song 'From A Distance'

US actress Bette Midler attends the WSJ Magazine 2019 Innovator Awards at MOMA on November 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Angela Weiss / AFP)

[PODCAST] Paano naiipit si Robredo sa drug war ni Duterte

Nov 23, 2019 - 11:31 AM

Ano ang gustong mangyari ni Vice President Leni Robredo sa kampanya laban sa droga? Pakinggan sa talakayan nila Rambo Talabong, Mara Cepeda, at Jodesz Gavilan.

Vice President Leni Robredo attended a Mass held at the Parish of the Holy Sacrifice in UP Diliman, Quezon City, on Wednesday, May 8, 2019. The Mass, held for fair and peaceful elections, was attended by some of the Otso Diretso senatorial candidates and their supporters. (Photo by OVP)

OGCC flagged non-bidding of BCDA's New Clark sports facilities

Nov 22, 2019 - 5:31 PM

Part 2: EXCLUSIVE: The OGCC raises red flags during a contract review. The BCDA, however, says it has an OGCC opinion that affirms the legality of the agreement.

NEW CLARK. The Athletic Stadium at the New Clark City, the venue for the 30th SEA Games. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

BCDA, Malaysian firm ink questionable P11-billion SEA Games deal

Nov 22, 2019 - 10:45 AM

Part 1: (UPDATED) EXCLUSIVE: The OGCC flags the return-of-investment and profit-sharing schemes of the BCDA-MTD Capital Berhad deal, but the BCDA insists it's 'very advantageous to the government’

The “starting block” at the oval of the Athletic Stadium at the New Clark City, the venue for the 30th SEA Games.

Vaping arrest order is latest legal conundrum in Duterte admin

Nov 21, 2019 - 6:45 PM

Is vaping allowed in designated smoking areas? The President's foot soldiers are piecing policy puzzles as they go.

LEGAL CONUNDRUM. President Rodrigo Roa Duterte orders ban on vape import, and orders arrest of vapers even without a law. Malacañang photo

Robredo lost Cabinet post due to request for drug war docs, intel – Panelo

Nov 19, 2019 - 3:40 PM

(UPDATED) After initially saying Vice President Leni Robredo would be given access to drug war documents, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo now claims this could 'imperil' national security

LIMITED ACCESS? Vice President Leni Robredo leads the meeting of the government's Inter-agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs held at the Quezon City Reception House on Friday, November 8, 2019. Photo by OVP

Malacañang says gov't can collect taxes from POGOs

Nov 19, 2019 - 2:00 PM

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo says 'technicalities' will not stop the Duterte administration from collecting what is owed the Philippine government

TAXING POGOs. Malacañang says the Philippine government will not be stopped from taxing Philippine offshore gaming operations. Photo by Rappler

3 years on, Bong Go still wrongly thinks CHR 'protects' only criminals

Nov 18, 2019 - 9:24 PM

Commission on Human Rights Chairperson Chito Gascon says they are mandated to remind the government to punish criminals 'in accordance with the rule of law'

BONG GO. Senator Bong Go interpellates the 2020 budget of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) and directly questions CHR chairman Chito Gascon on November 18, 2019. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Malacañang hits U.S. senator Sanders for calling out PH human rights abuses

Nov 17, 2019 - 7:20 PM

Malacañang once again says foreign officials have no right to meddle in the Philippines' internal affairs

HUMAN RIGHTS. Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders draws the ire of Malacañang for calling out human rights abuses in the Philippines. Photo by Mandel Ngan/AFP

Malacañang mourns death of Elizabeth Yu Gokongwei

Nov 17, 2019 - 8:53 AM

'A gentle, loving, kind, caring, and selfless human being Mrs Elizabeth was. She will be dearly missed,' says Malacañang in a statement

ELIZABETH YU GOKONGWEI. The wife of the late John Gokongwei Jr dies on November 16, 2019. Photo from Elizabeth Yu Gokongwei's Facebook page

Malacañang says emergency powers for Build, Build, Build too late, not priority

Nov 16, 2019 - 7:04 PM

'We only have less than 3 years left in office,' says Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo

Robredo on the right track in anti-drug campaign, says Malacañang

Nov 14, 2019 - 4:07 PM

(UPDATED) Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo says Vice President Leni Robredo has been taking steps in the right direction in her first week as co-chair of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs

PALACE SPOKESMAN. Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo fields questions from reporters in a news briefing at the New Executive Building

Duterte's golden age of infrastructure will have to be completed by next president

Nov 13, 2019 - 2:36 PM

Duterte's new list of infrastructure projects features about 100, but he won't finish almost half of them during his term. Most construction activities are also expected to start by 2022, his last year in office.


Conclusion: Experts warn of spying risk in AFP deal with China-backed telco

Nov 11, 2019 - 12:35 AM

The military's co-location deals with Smart Communications, Globe Telecom, and Dito Telecommunity are prone to spying, experts say, but Dito's link to the Chinese government means the third telco poses a greater threat

Experts warn of spying risk in AFP deal with China-backed telco

Nov 10, 2019 - 9:10 PM

Part 1: Rappler obtains copies of the military’s co-location agreements with Dito Telecommunity, Globe Telecom, and Smart Communications. Security analysts say the arrangements leave military communications open to intercepts.

'Exceptional and ideal Filipino': Tributes pour in for John Gokongwei

Nov 10, 2019 - 3:04 PM

'Mr John Gokongwei Jr left a legacy to the Filipino nation and the coming generation worth emulating,' says Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo

'IDEAL FILIPINO.' John Gokongwei Jr named MAP's Management Man of the Year 2017. File Photo by Alecs Ongcal/Rappler

Panelo: Harassment of Filipino-crewed ship 'not our concern'

Nov 03, 2019 - 10:20 PM

'It's not a Philippine vessel,' says Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo, when asked about the incident involving a Filipino-crewed commercial ship and a 'Chinese warship'

FILIPINO CREW. Ship captain Manolo Ebora (left) speaks to the crew of a 'Chinese warship' on the radio as his crew of fellow Filipinos steer the international oil tanker Green Aura near Scarborough Shoal in the West Philippine Sea on September 30, 2019. Photo courtesy of Captain Manolo Ebora

Agony continues for families shut out from Bilibid

Oct 28, 2019 - 7:45 PM

'Anong mangyayari sa loob? Hindi natin nakikita, kasi nandito tayo sa labas. Maawa naman si General Bantag. Iyong rasyon, parang pagkain ng aso,' says a convict's wife, whose last visit was October 4

Inmates queue for water rations inside the New Bilibid Prison Maximum Security COmpound on Monday.

Malacañang condemns Misamis Occidental mayor's ambush

Oct 27, 2019 - 3:03 PM

Whether or not Mayor David Navarro was involved in illegal drugs, he should have been afforded due process and not killed, says Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo

AMBUSHED. Clarin mayor David Navarro from Misamis Occidental was shot dead by still unidentified persons while he is being transported to the Cebu City prosecutor's office for inquest proceedings in M. Velez Street on October 25, 2019. Photo by Gelo Litonjua

One year of Panelo, the showbiz spokesman

Oct 22, 2019 - 7:45 PM

Count on Salvador Panelo to whip out every trick up his sleeve to defend the President. But who defends Panelo when he faces the specter of delicadeza?

FAST FACTS: State of Metro Manila’s public transport system

Oct 10, 2019 - 10:07 PM

(3rd UPDATE) Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo draws flak for denying the existence of a mass transportation crisis. Let’s take a look at the state of public mass transit systems in Metro Manila.

CHOKEPOINT. Bumper to bumper traffic is seen along EDSA near Cubao, Quezon City. Photo by Darren Langit/Rappler

Malacañang 'will not be intimidated' by September 30 transport strike

Sep 29, 2019 - 10:50 PM

Transport groups will again protest the government's public utility vehicle modernization program, but Malacañang says the program is 'long overdue'

TRANSPORT STRIKE. A protester at a previous transport strike in July 2019. Photo by Maria Tan

Newsbreak Chats: How gov't is handling the GCTA, BuCor mess

Sep 26, 2019 - 4:18 PM

On Thursday, September 26, the Newsbreak team sits down to discuss whether government is on the right track and what else it can do to full-proof the implementation of the GCTA law

LIST: Duterte's skipped events, long absences

Sep 25, 2019 - 11:03 AM

Here is Rappler's running list of official engagements President Rodrigo Duterte has skipped and periods when he made no public appearances

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte delivers his speech during the oath-taking ceremony of the officers of the Malacañang Press Corps, Presidential Photojournalists Association, and Malacañang Cameramen Association at the Malacañan Palace on September 10, 2019. KING RODRIGUEZ/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

Locsin says loans, grants from countries hitting PH drug war 'small time'

Sep 21, 2019 - 1:21 PM

(3rd UPDATE) 'We don't need the money,' says Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr, following the Palace decision to suspend talks on loans and grants from 18 countries that backed the Iceland resolution

INVESTIGATE. Families of victims of extrajudicial killings hold a protest against killings in the government's campaign against illegal drugs. File photo by Maria Tan/Rappler

Malacañang suspends talks on loans, grants from countries backing U.N. probe into drug war

Sep 21, 2019 - 9:37 AM

(3rd UPDATE) Yet Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo categorically denies President Rodrigo Duterte issued such an order

Condemning the killings under President Rodrigo Duterte's admininstration, relatives of victims of extra judicial killings along with human rights groups picketed the DND headquarters in Camp Aguinaldo and the Philippine National Police headquarters at Camp Crame in Quezon City. Demanding justice for their slain kin amidst the recent adoption of the Iceland resolution at the UNHRC to investigate the human rights violations and drug war related killings in the Philippines. July 17, 2019. Photo by Jire Carreon/Rappler

FAST FACTS: What is inside the revised 2019 IRR of the GCTA Law

Sep 17, 2019 - 5:04 PM

The new IRR says heinous crime convicts after the law became effective in 2013 shall not be entitled to any type of good conduct time allowance

Inside the New Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa City on October 28, 2016.

Nicanor Faeldon's gov't posts and the controversies that trailed him

Sep 06, 2019 - 1:33 PM

Occupying 3 key government positions since July 2016, Nicanor Faeldon has had more than his usual share of troubles

Second day of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee hearing on Good Conduct Time Allowance on September 3, 2019. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

[PODCAST] Inciting to sedition sa ilalim ni Duterte

Sep 05, 2019 - 9:17 PM

Ano ang implikasyon ng inciting to sedition complaint sa demokrasya sa Pilipinas? Alamin sa talakayan nina police reporter Rambo Talabong, justice reporter Lian Buan, at researcher-writer Jodesz Gavilan.

'Obviously lying': Senators don't believe Faeldon

Sep 04, 2019 - 1:21 PM

Will Faeldon survive this controversy unscathed?

GCTA CONTROVERSY. Bureau of Corrections chief Nicanor Faeldon was put on the hot seat at the second day of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee hearing on Good Conduct Time Allowance on September 3, 2019. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Gaps by both Aquino, Duterte administrations led to GCTA mess

Sep 02, 2019 - 7:50 PM

This demonstrates the pitfalls of bureaucracy and the impactful consequences of seemingly imperfect legislation

Photos inside the Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa during the visit of Pres. Benigno Aquino III on January 27, 2012. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Newsbreak Chats: The GCTA law, Cardema, Bikoy, and how laws can be twisted

Aug 29, 2019 - 4:16 PM

On Thursday, August 29, the Newsbreak team sits down to discuss and analyze how some political personalities have tried to trifle with the law

Duterte's office has highest confidential, intel funds in proposed 2020 budget

Aug 28, 2019 - 8:48 AM

The allocation is even higher than what is to be given to the police and the military

TIMELINE: The GCTA law and the controversy it has stirred

Aug 27, 2019 - 5:55 PM

The debate now focuses on whether or not people convicted of heinous crimes should benefit from the Good Conduct Time Allowance law. What are the arguments for amendment now?

Beyond Sanchez: How to improve the Good Conduct Time Allowance law

Aug 26, 2019 - 5:00 PM

The law should clarify unclear provisions on heinous crimes and spell out disqualifying acts to encourage sustained good behavior

Inside the National Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa City on October 28, 2016.

Early release of Antonio Sanchez? Here's what the GCTA law says

Aug 23, 2019 - 5:09 PM

The GCTA law allows deductions from sentences of persons deprived of liberty on the basis of good behavior. But how is it calculated and what are the nuances of the law?

Inside the National Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa City on October 28, 2016.

Malacañang's 'inevitable conclusion': Sanchez disqualified from early release

Aug 23, 2019 - 3:10 PM

Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo says a review of the law 'reveals that it is categorical in excluding recidivists, habitual delinquents, escapees, and persons charged with heinous crimes from the benefit of its coverage'

WILL HE STAY IN JAIL? Rapist and murderer Antonio Sanchez is seen inside the Maximum Security Compound of the New Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa City on August 22, 2019. Photo by Lito Borras/Rappler

Remember? Salvador Panelo was Antonio Sanchez's lawyer in UPLB rape-slay case

Aug 22, 2019 - 3:17 PM

Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo counts convicted murderer-rapist Antonio Sanchez as among his former clients

Duterte gov't wants to almost double Malacañang confidential, intel funds for 2020

Aug 22, 2019 - 2:44 PM

(UPDATED) The Duterte administration seeks P4.5 billion for the Office of the President's confidential and intelligence funds, a P2-billion hike from the previously requested P2.5 billion

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte shares a light moment with some members of the cabinet on the sidelines of the Joint Armed Forces of the Philippines-Philippine National Police Command Conference at the Malacañan Palace on August 8, 2019. RICHARD MADELO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO