Daily News Highlights – December 6, 2015 Edition

Gerard Lim

This is AI generated summarization, which may have errors. For context, always refer to the full article.

  1. Climate talks move to next round

    Negotiators of countries seeking to curb greenhouse gas emissions as part of a global climate deal reached an initial agreement on a draft of the deal on Saturday, December 6 (evening in Manila). On Day 6 of the marathon climate negotiations in Paris, the United Nations released a blueprint for a pact to protect humanity from the harmful consequences of greenhouse gasses. The draft agreement is full of bracketed proposals or “options”, but it is a significant step towards a possible climate deal by the end of the Paris Summit. Dean Tony La Viña, spokesperson for the Philippine delegation in Paris, said the draft satisfied Philippine climate negotiators. The draft agreement will proceed to the next phase of negotiations, which involve political discussions. Negotiators hope to finish the discussions and reach a deal by December 11. 

    Read the full story on Rappler

  2. Aquino sees ‘logic’ in Comelec decision on Poe

    President Benigno Aquino III, speaking to reporters in Rome on Friday, December 4, said he sees the “logic” behind the ruling of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) second division to cancel the certificate of candidacy (COC) of presidential aspirant Grace Poe. “Hindi ako SET (Senate Electoral Tribunal), hindi ako Comelec – pareho silang independent bodies. Hindi rin ako Supreme Court (SC). Pero parang nakikita ko ‘yung logic nung sinasabi rito,” said Aquino. He admitted, however, that ruling leads to “so many more questions” but said the decision was not up to him. Aquino is the chairman of the ruling Liberal Party (LP) and has endorsed former DILG Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas II in his presidential bid. Senator Grace Poe faces 3 other disqualification cases before the Comelec. Poe has vowed to appeal the decision of the second division and continue her campaign.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  3. Poe to Roxas: You knew about my election issues

    Senator Grace Poe on Friday, December 4, shot back at Liberal Party standard-bearer Manuel “Mar” Roxas II, who had claimed that Poe hid her citizenship and residency issues when she was being invited as the ruling party’s vice presidential candidate. On Thursday, December 3, Roxas said the ruling party “presumed regularity” when it sincerely invited Poe to “be part of Daang Matuwid.” Poe pointed out that Roxas knew early on that questions were being raised about her qualifications, and cannot claim that these were kept secret from the ruling party. Yet the ruling Liberal Party continued to woo her to become Roxas’ running mate. Poe, the front runner in presidential preference surveys, recently identified Roxas’ camp as among those behind moves to disqualify her from the 2016 polls, insinuating that such efforts intensified because she did not agree to become Roxas’ running mate.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  4. Vatican to Aquino: Ensure peace in Mindanao

    President Benigno Aquino III paid a visit to Pope Francis in the Vatican on Friday, December 4 as part of a brief working visit to Italy and France. At the Vatican, the Pope, the Vatican’s Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, and the President spoke about Mindanao and the ongoing peace process between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). “Special reference was made to the peace process in Mindanao, with the hope that commitment from the Parties may guarantee stable and lasting peace to the region,” the Vatican said in a statement. The Pope also asked Aquino to “pray for me.” Pope Francis visited the Philippines in January of 2015, welcomed by millions of Catholic faithful in Manila and in Tacloban.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  5. Philippines to be $1-trillion economy by 2030

    The Philippines will be the only sovereign entity in Asia with improving credit prospects, making it a $1-trillion economy by 2030, Washington-based analytics firm IHS Global Insight said. In its latest risk report, IHS said it upgraded its outlook on the Philippines’ credit rating to positive from stable, amid the trend of improving financial fundamentals, investor confidence, and governance standards in the Philippines. IHS cited the country’s strong macroeconomic fundamentals and improvements in governance. The Philippines is the only country in Asia that garnered a positive action from IHS. The country has benefitted from a growing Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) sector and consistent remittances from Filipino workers abroad.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  6. US officials probe ‘terrorism’ angle in California shooting

    The mass shooting in California is being investigated as “an act of terrorism,” the FBI said Friday, amid reports the female assailant had pledged allegiance to the Islamic State group on Facebook. The FBI said, however, there was no indication that Syed Farook, 28, and his 29-year-old Pakistani wife Tashfeen Malik were part of a network. Farook met Malik through an online dating site and travelled to Saudi Arabia to marry her. Farook, who was born in the US, and Malik were killed in a firefight with police hours after the attack, leaving investigators to comb through their belongings to try to determine a motive. The massacre, if proven to be terror-related, would be the deadliest such assault on American soil since the September 11, 2001 attacks. US President Barack Obama on Sunday, December 6 said the US ‘will not be terrorized’ but renewed calls for stricter gun control measures.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  7. Is Mark Zuckerberg’s fortune pledge a charity initiative or a tax break?

    When Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg and wife Priscilla Chan announced that they were giving 99% of their Facebook shares – currently worth about $45 billion – to advance the cause of good in the world, some quarters were not as enthusiastic. Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, and his wife will set up a limited liability company (LLC) where most of his wealth will go to. The LLC will allow the Zuckerbergs to spend their money as they wish for causes they wish to support without having to pay donors tax. Rappler’s Victor Barreiro Jr scans the net and summarizes why, in some cases, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative – as it is being called – could pass of as charity or as a very shrewd way to avoid paying huge taxes.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  8. Court orders halt to Uber, GrabCar applications for 20 days

    A Quezon City court on Friday, December 4 ordered the government to stop accepting Uber and GrabCar applications for 20 days. This was after the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) faced opposition and complaints on the accreditation of transportation network vehicle services (TNVS), particularly the issue of oversupply of Uber, GrabCar units plying and earning from the public transportation. The court acted on a petition by the  Angat Tsuper Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operator ng Pilipinas Genuine Organization Transport Coalition, Incorporated (STOP and GO). The temporary restraining order, however, does not apply to current operations of Uber and GrabCar. Both Uber and GrabCar said they will cooperate with the government but added ‘imposing a cap’ is not the right answer.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  9. Mother files P100-M lawsuit vs British School Manila

    British School Manila (BSM) is facing another complaint from Trixie Madamba, mother of student Liam Madamba, who took his own life in February reportedly over problems at school. Madamba is suing the school for P100 million ($2.12 million) for the manner in which her son was ‘punished’ by a teacher for allegedly plagiarizing an essay, which Madamba claims led to her son committing suicide. The family is also suing the principal, Simon Mann, in an individual capacity, for allowing the teacher, Natalie Mann (not related to Simon) to leave the country. Natalie Mann has since tendered her resignation. The British School Manila is also facing a separate administrative complaint before the Department of Education. 

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  10. Japan to debut world’s first washable smartphone

    Ever wished you could take your phone with you into the shower and call or surf away? Well, that’s already possible. But what you can’t do with your phone in the shower is get it soapy. Not, at least, until today. A Japanese firm will soon launch a waterproof smartphone that you can also wash with soap and water. Telecom company KDDI say its new “Digno rafre” phone is the only phone that can withstand a bath. It’s meant primarily for parents of children who tend to get their hands dirty from all sorts of things. Moms and dads will be glad their ketchup-stained phone won’t need to be sent to the cleaners or the trash. The gadget will cost $175 when it reaches the market.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

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