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Senate approves bill lifting rice import limits

Nov 14, 2018 - 10:30 PM

If the rice tariffication bill is passed into law, a Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund would be created to protect the rice industry from sudden or extreme price fluctuations

APPROVED. Rice tariffication is one of the means identified that would help address soaring inflation. File photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Senate puts 2019 budget hearings on hold

Aug 13, 2018 - 6:08 PM

This is amid the clash over the proposed cash-based budgeting system between the House of Representatives and the Department of Budget and Management

Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Senators question 'core functions' of PLDT, NutriAsia amid labor dispute

Aug 09, 2018 - 7:04 PM

Workers hired by contractors of NutriAsia and PLDT argue that they perform functions that are 'core' to the company

STATUS. Senate labor committee chairperson Joel Villanueva asks workers under PLDT and NutriAsia contractors about their status of employment. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Senate probe sought into NutriAsia, PLDT labor violations

Jul 31, 2018 - 2:59 PM

'We need to investigate because these cases highlight the weaknesses of our current regulatory framework,' says Senate labor committee chair Joel Villanueva

GUARDED. Police (not in photo) and security personnel man the entrance of NutriAsia factory in Marilao.

Heart Evangelista, Iza Calzado, Divine Lee rally support for SOGIE bill

Jul 24, 2018 - 10:48 AM

Celebrities call on Senate President Tito Sotto and Senators Manny Pacquiao and Joel Villanueva to support a bill that would make discrimination based on gender identity or expression illegal

'Nothing is impossible': Senators congratulate colleague Pacquiao

Jul 15, 2018 - 3:35 PM

Senator Manny Pacquiao is hailed as the nation's 'pride and joy' as he emerges victorious in the ring against Argentine fighter Lucas Matthysse

Philippines' Manny Pacquiao (R) fights Argentina's Lucas Matthysse during their world welterweight boxing championship bout at Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur on July 15, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Mohd RASFAN

Bicam OKs freedom of religion in proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law

Jul 10, 2018 - 5:37 PM

'We need to be mindful of the fact that people are harassed or subjected to violence because of their choice of beliefs in certain areas of the country,' says Senator Joel Villanueva, proponent of the clause promoting religious freedom in the region

Members of both the Senate and the House continue on the second day the Bicameral Conference Committee hearing on the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law at Crowne Plaza in Pasig City on July 10, 2018. Photo by Maria Tan/Rappler

Senators stand by Gilas Pilipinas amid brawl with Australia

Jul 03, 2018 - 1:53 PM

Senators Juan Edgardo Angara, Joseph Victor Ejercito, and Joel Villanueva say Gilas Pilipinas could not be entirely blamed for the brawl with Australia

FIBA PH vs AUS July 2 Brawl. Photo by Josh Albelda/Rappler

Senators oppose final SC decision on Sereno ouster

Jun 19, 2018 - 2:12 PM

Senators are torn on whether the Senate can still adopt the resolution expressing its sentiment against the quo warranto petition

Senate: Plenary Session. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

On Eid'l Fitr, senators hope BBL will become law

Jun 15, 2018 - 4:40 PM

The lawmakers believe the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law, which is pending at the bicameral conference committee level in Congress, will bring peace in Mindanao

EID'L FITR. Muslims of Pikit town in North Cotabato welcome the end of the Holy Month of Ramadan with a big congregational prayer at their town plaza on June 15, 2018. Photo by Manman Dejeto/Rappler

Independence Day, Father Nilo, Trump and Kim | Midday wRap

Jun 12, 2018 - 3:14 PM

Watch Rappler's midday newscast with Bea Cupin

With China in West PH Sea, lawmakers say Independence Day 'devoid of spirit'

Jun 12, 2018 - 8:56 AM

(3rd UPDATE) Opposition lawmakers say the country is not truly given the government's failure to assert the country's rights against China in the West Philippine Sea

FREEDOM. Boy Scouts of the Philippines wave Philippine flaglets with full of gladness in celebration of Independence Day in 2017.  File photo by SM City Tarlac

'Senate must pick up fight vs contractualization' – Hontiveros

Apr 21, 2018 - 3:41 PM

(UPDATED) Vice President Leni Robredo meanwhile calls on workers and employers to find a middle ground on the issue of contractualization

NO EO. Labor groups stage a rally in Welcome Rotonda, Quezon City to protest President Rodrigo Duterte's non-issuance of Executive order on contractualization. Photo by Inoue Jaena/Rappler

Villanueva urges DENR to declare Boracay as 'critical' area

Mar 03, 2018 - 2:52 PM

(2nd UPDATE) A business establishment in an environmentally-critical area is required to apply for an environmental compliance certificate before operating

HIGH-TIME. Senator Joel Villanueva says that the DENR should consider declaring Boracay Island an "environmentally-critical area." File Photo by Camille Elemia/Rappler

Senate to probe death of OFW in Kuwait

Feb 13, 2018 - 8:07 PM

The hearing is set February 21 says Senate labor committee chair Joel Villanueva

PROBE. Senator Manny Pacquiao seeks a probe into the deaths of Overseas Filipino Workers abroad, following the death of 29-year-old Joanna Demafelis in Kuwait.

#ThewRap: Videos you need to watch this week, January 22-28, 2018

Jan 28, 2018 - 12:55 PM

Must-watch videos from this week

RED HOT. A lava fountain at the crater of Mayon Volcano in the early hours of January 23, 2018. Photo courtesy Phivolcs

What's contingency plan if PH stops deploying OFWs to Kuwait? – Villanueva

Jan 27, 2018 - 12:45 PM

But International watchdog Human Rights Watch says that instead of a ban, the Philippines should demand 'stronger protections' for overseas Filipino workers

WAITING. Following the deaths of 7 OFWs in Kuwait, the Department of Labor and Employment stopped the processing and issuing of overseas employment certificates to all Kuwait-bound workers. File photo by Noel Celis/AFP

Joel Villanueva 'offended' over shallow criteria for UST alumni award

Jan 22, 2018 - 6:25 PM

(UPDATED) The senator refuses to comment when asked if he thinks fellow awardee Mocha Uson embodies Thomasian values, including veritas or truth

UST AWARD. Photo by Camille Elemia/Rappler

Duterte calls on Filipinos to emulate Rizal’s patriotism

Dec 30, 2017 - 9:16 AM

'Even in death, he imparted upon us his aspirations for a nation that is free from the scourge of injustice, tyranny and suffering,' says President Rodrigo Duterte on the 121st death anniversary of national hero Dr Jose Rizal

RIZAL DAY. President Rodrigo Duterte pays tribute to national hero Jose Rizal on his death anniversary. File photo from Presidential Photo

Davao mall fire, rules for public servants, Putin’s reelection bid | Midday wRap

Dec 28, 2017 - 2:18 PM

Watch Rappler’s midday newscast with Mara Cepeda

Gov't urged to prioritize safer workplace bill

Dec 28, 2017 - 8:38 AM

'By neglecting to comply with occupational safety and health standards, we run the risk of losing so many precious lives as proven by the recent fire tragedy in Davao,' says Senator Joel Villanueva in pushing for the passage of the measure

NCCC FIRE. Some 37 call center agents were killed in the fire that gutted the NCCC Mall in Davao City.

Senators slam sudden insertion on coal taxes after bicam deal

Dec 13, 2017 - 7:23 PM

There are two different versions of the bicameral conference committee report being circulated to lawmakers, says Senator Villanueva

File photo by Camille Elemia/Rappler

Bill on job-skills mismatch hurdles final reading in Senate

Dec 12, 2017 - 10:53 AM

Senate Bill 1456 or the proposed Philippine Qualifications Framework Act aims to bring together labor market and education stakeholders to craft an integrated system that prevents job-skills mismatch

JOB FAIR. Thousands of job seekers troop the Quezon City Hall on Labor Day, May 1, to seek for job opportunities at the DOLE's Job Fair. Photo by Darren Langit/Rappler

Senate approves bill requiring 100% service charge be given to employees

Dec 11, 2017 - 8:00 PM

The measure, however, does not mandate the collection of service charge to 'avoid interference' with the management's right to exercise discretion in their operations

Senate bill seeks to help Filipino seafarers returning from abroad

Dec 06, 2017 - 9:50 PM

The proposed Magna Carta of Filipino Seafarers includes the establishment of a reintegration center that would develop livelihood programs, among others

HOMECOMING. The proposed Magna Carta for Filipino Seafarers eyes the establishment of a reintegration center for returning seamen.

From P10 to P300: Senate OKs nearly 3,000% increase in coal tax

Nov 27, 2017 - 10:00 PM

From the current tax of P10 per metric ton of coal, the Senate seeks to implement gradual increases over a 3-year period, ultimately reaching P300

Clinker and ash from coal are seen in seabeds in Lucanin, Mariveles, Bataan. Photo by Ayeen Karunungan/ Rappler

Senators slam Solano for 'lying, covering up' death of Atio Castillo

Oct 25, 2017 - 12:31 PM

'Ngayon naman ay hindi na ang Senado ang ginagago ni John Paul Solano kundi ginagago niya na ang buong Pilipinas,' says Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri on Solano's claim that Atio Castillo died due to a pre-existing heart condition

Aegis Juris Fraternity members at senate hearing. Photo by Angie de Silva

DOLE wants stiffer penalties vs contractualization

Oct 10, 2017 - 4:03 PM

Under the proposed measure against contractualization, employers who violate the rules on labor-only contracting are only required to regularize their workers

ENDO. The Department of Labor and Employment wants stiffer penalties for companies violating the law against labor-only contracting. Photo by LeAnne Jazul/Rappler

Senate panel OKs P60-B agriculture budget

Sep 20, 2017 - 5:34 PM

'We'll have to make do with whatever was given to us,' says Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol

Uber suspension, Trump, Swift | Midday wRap

Aug 15, 2017 - 12:03 PM

Watch Rappler’s midday newscast with Chay Hofileña

Public to 'suffer' from 'cruel' suspension of Uber – senators

Aug 15, 2017 - 7:56 AM

UPDATED It does not solve the problem but further exacerbates the problem of having an utter lack of safe reliable and convenient transportation options for our people says Senator Grace Poe

Senate approves ILO treaty on government workers' protection

Aug 14, 2017 - 4:43 PM

This makes the Philippines the first Asian country to ratify the Convention which guarantees public workers rights to organize and negotiate employment terms

FIle photo

Marcos, Roxas, Andanar | Evening wRap

Aug 09, 2017 - 8:29 PM

Watch the evening newscast with Marguerite de Leon

Senators admit links to 'middleman' in P6.4-B shabu shipment

Aug 09, 2017 - 12:00 PM

UPDATED Alleged middleman Kenneth Dong was a campaign donor of Villanueva while Recto Hontiveros Zubiri and Pangilinan were his wedding sponsors

TIES. At least 4 senators admit to their links to Kenneth Dong, alleged middleman in the P6.4-billion worth of shabu shipment from China.

Lawmakers scramble to resolve Uber, Grab dilemma

Jul 19, 2017 - 3:15 PM

At least 3 bills are filed in the House of Representatives and the Senate seeking to make ride hailing services as an alternative public transport mode

REGULATION GUIDE. Legislators file measures seeking to address the ongoing controversy over the operations of Uber and Grab in the Philippines.

[Newspoint] Wanted: Truth police

Jul 01, 2017 - 10:00 AM

If anyone should take up police duty against fake news it is us news people ourselves

Senate bill seeks jail time for gov't officials spreading fake news

Jun 22, 2017 - 9:52 AM

Under Senate Bill 1492 any person found guilty will be punished with a fine ranging from P100 000 to P5 million and one to 5 years imprisonment while public officials will be subjected to stiffer penalties

Senators on Duterte's foreign trips: Outcome more important than expenses

Jun 19, 2017 - 7:39 PM

For me the most important aspect is the outcome of the trip says Senator Sherwin Gatchalian who joined at least 2 trips abroad

PRESIDENTIAL TRIPS. At least 3 majority senators say the public should look at the outcome of President Rodrigo Duterte's trips, amounting to at least P386.2 million in his first year in office. File photo

Search on for missing Filipina after London fire

Jun 16, 2017 - 12:41 PM

Missing Filipina Ligaya G Moore is at least 60 years old a member of the Jesus Is Lord JIL church and a resident of Grenfell Tower in London

MISSING FILIPINA. Ligaya Moore, a Filipina, remains missing after the Grenfell Tower on July 14, 2017, killed at least 17 people in London. Photo of Moore from the Philippine embassy in London; photo of Grenfell Tower from AFP

Robredo orders relief operations amid Marawi clashes

May 24, 2017 - 4:45 AM

In separate statements lawmakers also condemn the Marawi clashes with some of them questioning the move to put Mindanao under martial law

MARAWI CLASHES. Vice President Leni Robredo orders relief operations for Filipinos affected by the clashes in Marawi City. Photo by OVP

Senate approves 'work from home' bill on final reading

May 22, 2017 - 4:15 PM

If passed into law the bill is seen to help ease the worsening traffic situation in cities

WORK FROM HOME. The Senate approves on third and final reading the bill allowing telecommuting (work from home) of employees.

Dep't of Justice to reinvestigate pork barrel scam

May 10, 2017 - 5:57 PM

UPDATED Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II warns the allies of the previous administration as he reopens the investigation into the pork barrel scam

Ratings drop shows drug war now 'national nightmare' – senators

Apr 19, 2017 - 2:41 PM

2ND UPDATE The fear is real says Senator Risa Hontiveros in response to the decline in public satisfaction with the Duterte administration s controversial campaign

3 suspected drugs personalities were apprenhended by cops while 3 others died after a shootout in Maypajo, Caloocan City on September 30, 2016.

Senators to block law allowing Duterte to delay polls, appoint OICs

Mar 27, 2017 - 4:41 PM

Senators from both the majority and minority blocs oppose the President s idea saying it is unconstitutional and undemocratic

Voters wait in line at the local Comelec office of Manila as the first day of official registration for the coming Sangguniang Kabataan elections start on Friday, July 15, 2016. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

LOOK: Majority senators in full force at 'intimate dinner' with Duterte

Mar 15, 2017 - 7:27 AM

Senator JV Ejercito says they discussed the proposed tax reform measure one of the priority bills of the Duterte administration

Photo from Senator JV Ejercito's official Facebook

Senate panel to discuss 'work from home' bill

Jan 25, 2017 - 8:25 AM

Aside from addressing the traffic crisis the bill also promotes work life balance as it seeks to give employees more time with their family than on the road

WORK-LIFE BALANCE. The Senate is set to discuss a bill promoting the 'work from home' policy, saying it will give employees more time for their family

Tracking Sandiganbayan: Who's who in PH's biggest corruption cases?

Jan 22, 2017 - 3:44 PM

Which corruption cases are still pending before the anti graft court and what are their statuses in the judicial process?

Senators: SWS poll proves Filipinos feel scared, unsafe under Duterte

Dec 19, 2016 - 4:50 PM

Both majority and minority senators say it is high time for President Rodrigo Duterte to ensure that the rule of law is followed in the war on drugs

Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Law needed to make free tuition in SUCs part of annual budget – Bam Aquino

Dec 18, 2016 - 3:42 PM

A law needs to be passed so that the allocation for free tuition in state universities and colleges will become a regular item in the budget the senator says

FREE TUITION. Senator Bam Aquino stressed that a law still needs to be passed to allow Senate to allocate budget for it annually. Rappler file photo

It's final: Senate will not dismiss Joel Villanueva

Dec 05, 2016 - 5:50 PM

Senator Joel Villanueva remains a senator after none of his colleagues oppose the Senate legal counsel s opinion favorable to him