Daily News Highlights – December 21, 2015 Edition

CJ Maglunog

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

  1. Philippines’ Pia Wurtzbach is Miss Universe 2015

    After a mix-up, Miss Philippines Pia Wurtzbach was crowned Miss Universe 2015 on Sunday, December 20 (Monday, December 21 in Manila) at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas. The First runner-up, Miss Colombia Ariadna Gutierrez, was initially announced as the winner by host Steve Harvey. Harvey said the mix-up in the announcement was a “horrible mistake” on his part. Second runner-up was Miss USA, Olivia Jordan. Find out more by clicking on the links below.

    Read: After mix-up, Philippines wins Miss Universe 2015

    Check out our live blog: Miss Universe 2015 coronation night

  2. UN envoy: PH storms highlight need for climate justice, aid

    Occurring days after a historic agreement was forged at the UN climate change conference (COP21) in Paris, the successive storms that recently hit the Philippines underscored the urgent need to raise the world’s ambitions in the climate agreement, including financial support for developing countries, according to Mary Robinson, the UN Secretary General’s special envoy for climate change. When Typhoon Nona left, it damaged about 166,552 houses, displacing nearly 743,000 people and killing at least 34, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) reported. Thousands returned to their communities only to see destroyed roads, bridges, schools, and livelihoods. The estimated cost of damage to infrastructure and agriculture, according to the government, reached more than P1.8 billion as of Saturday, December 19. The Paris agreement urged developed countries to “enhance the provision of urgent and adequate finance, technology, and capacity-building support” to reach COP21’s ambition.

    Read: PH storms a reminder of need for climate justice, aid – UN envoy


  3. Nona, Onyok death toll rises to 45


    The death toll from two storms, which battered the Philippines, rose to 45 on Sunday, December 20, as several towns remained under water and rain kept falling in the Bicol Region, CALABARZON, Aurora, and Metro Manila. The rain was caused by a cold front, dragged into the country by Typhoon Nona (Melor) and Tropical Depression Onyok, which hit the Philippines in succession last week. Floods almost 3 meters (9 feet) deep covered some riverside areas north of the capital Manila as heavy rain kept falling, civil defense offices said. Many low-lying areas north of Manila act as a catchment area for rain in other parts of the main island of Luzon.

    More about the impact of Typhoon Nona and Tropical Depression Onyok

  4. Will Duterte debate Roxas?

    After announcing on Wednesday, December 17, that he is ready to debate with other presidential aspirants, Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte declared Saturday, December 19 that he is not keen on debating with administration presidential candidate Mar Roxas whom he described as “a liar and tail-ender.” This was after Roxas, on Friday, stated that he is ready to debate with the Davao City Mayor. The two presidential aspirants have previously engaged in a word war over whether or not Roxas holds a Wharton degree. Roxas ranked fourth in a late November Social Weather Stations survey commissioned by the Duterte camp. Duterte topped that poll commissioned by Davao City businessman William Lima.

    Duterte to other bets: Be ready to debate with me

    Duterte on Roxas: ‘I don’t debate with a liar and tail-ender’

    Roxas to Duterte: Don’t back down from challenges

  5. Can Duterte bank on Mindanao voters to win presidency?

    Behind any presidential candidate is a known bailiwick that can be counted on to deliver the votes. These places can be where the candidate’s family traces its roots, an “adopted” hometown, or an area, which the candidate or family members used to govern. For Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, it is Davao. But there have been claims that the entire Mindanao, not just Davao, backs Duterte’s candidacy. Can Mindanao voters propel Duterte to the presidency? Rappler dissects facts about the region’s voters.

    Read: Can Mindanao voters propel Duterte to the presidency?

  6. 1,400 bets to lose political party perks

    The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is set to strip 1,400 candidates of privileges associated with political parties because of problems in the forms they submitted. In a podcast interview with Rappler, Comelec Commissioner Christian Lim said these 1,400 local candidates may still run but will be forced to become independent bets. Lim said this is because these candidates filed problematic certificates of nomination and acceptance (CONAs). For instance, around 400 candidates will be declared independent their political parties “over-nominated,” meaning the party fielded “more than the number of candidates required to be voted for in a particular elective position.” Among the privileges the soon-to-be-independent candidates will lose is the chance of being substituted for.

    Read: Comelec: 1,400 bets to lose political party perks 

    PODCAST: Most senior poll exec on challenges facing Comelec

  7. Did pre-modern humans survive until end of last Ice Age?

    Until recently, scientists believed that the only pre-modern humans who survived in what is now Europe and Asia were Neanderthals and Denisovans, both of which disappeared some 40,000 years ago. This may change as scientists uncover more mysteries surrounding a 14,000-year-old bone found in 1989 in Maludong (Red Deer Cave), China. After years of study, scientists are now saying the bone might be the partial femur of a pre-modern human species. The bone’s relatively young age suggests the possibility that “primitive-looking humans could have survived until very late in our evolution,” perhaps until the end of the last Ice Age, according to Prof. Ji Xueping, of the Yunnan Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology, China. This hints at the possibility a pre-modern species may have overlapped in time with modern humans on mainland East Asia, said co-author Darren Curnoe from the University of New South Wales. Both scientists caution that more studies needed to establish this as a fact. “The case needs to be built up slowly with more bone discoveries,” according to Curnoe.

    Read: Ancient human ancestor may have persisted through Ice Age

    14,000-Year-Old Bone Found in Red Deer Cave Points to Archaic Human Species

  8. Protests condemn release of convicted New Delhi gang rapist

    The youngest convict in an infamous fatal gang rape in New Delhi has been released from a youth correctional facility, police said Sunday, December 20, sparking street protests and angry condemnation from the victim’s parents. Only days after the third anniversary of the attack on a moving bus, Indian police confirmed that the rapist — who is now aged 20 — had completed his spell behind bars even though a court ruling on an appeal against his release is due to be heard on Monday. He is now being supervised by a non-governmental agency, effectively meaning he is a free man. “He has been given a new identity and his criminal record has been expunged,” a police source added.

    Read: Parent fury, protests as Delhi gang-rapist walks free 

  9. Top 10 Pinoy Facebook moments in 2015

    These topics have one thing in common: they made you comment, like and share on Facebook. From the Pope Francis visit, to AlDub, to APEC to the Philippine elections, Rappler picks the top global and local events that dominated the Facebook news feeds of Filipinos for the year.

    Top 10 Facebook moments in 2015 for Filipinos

  10. ‘A Second Chance’ breaks box office records

    The sequel to ‘One More Chance,’ Cathy Garcia-Molina’s ‘A Second Chance,’ is now the highest grossing Filipino film of all time, according to Star Cinema. By Friday, December 18, the movie has earned P556 million ($11.759 million) worldwide. Released on November 25, the movie, which follows characters Popoy and Basha from the classic One More Chance movie earned P43.3 million on its opening day. Both movies star John Lloyd Cruz and Bea Alonzo.

    Read: ‘A Second Chance’ is the all-time highest grossing Filipino film

    ‘A Second Chance’ earns P200M in the box office

    IN PHOTOS: Bea, John Lloyd thrill fans at ‘A Second Chance’ premiere



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CJ Maglunog

CJ Maglunog has been a content strategist for Rappler since 2015. Her work includes optimizing stories for various platforms. She’s a journalism graduate from Centro Escolar University.