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- PWDs now exempted from VAT
President Benigno Aquino III signed Republic Act 10754 into law, exempting persons with disabilities (PWDs) from payment of value added tax (VAT). The new measure amends the Magna Carta for Disabled Persons to allow the exemption. In the Philippines, only half of PWDs in urban areas are employed, while the figure is even lower in rural areas.
Find out more about the new law for PWDs.
- PhilRem, Kim Wong testimonies differ
In the third Senate hearing on the Bangladesh Bank fund heist, PhilRem president Salud Bautista denied that $17 million of the stolen $81 million is still with her company. Bautista said PhilRem wired the money to Midas junket operator Weikang Xu. Chinese casino junket operator Kim Wong, meanwhile, told senators that PhilRem transferred P1 billion to his company, Eastern Hawaii Leisure Company Limited. But Wong said he did not know that the funds were stolen from the Bangladesh Bank.
- License plate sheets stolen from LTO office
License plate sheets which may be worth millions of pesos were stolen from the Land Transportation Office (LTO) during the Holy Week break. An LTO official discovered the robbery at the agency’s central office in Quezon City on Monday, March 28. The LTO has asked Quezon City police and the National Bureau of Investigation to look into the incident.
Here’s the full story on the robbery at the LTO office.
- NBI investigates hacking of Comelec site
The Commission on Elections tapped the National Bureau of Investigation to look into the leaking of data from the poll body’s website. This comes after a group called LulzSec Pilipinas said it leaked the “whole database” of the Comelec. As of Wednesday morning, March 30, the poll body’s website was already loading after previously being inaccessible due to a “clean-up” following the cyber attack.
Read more about the Comelec’s latest statements on the hacking.
- DSWD: Beware of local bets using 4Ps
Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Corazon “Dinky” Soliman warned voters to beware of local candidates using the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) just to get votes. Soliman said beneficiaries of the government program should not believe the candidates’ threats, since only DSWD national and regional officials can access the list of beneficiaries.
Get more details about the alleged threats from local bets.
- Brazil government coalition collapses
Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff is now scrambling to save her presidency after the country’s largest party, the PMDB, voted to immediately end its alliance with Rousseff’s Workers’ Party. This greatly reduces the Brazilian president’s chances of mustering the votes needed to defeat a first impeachment vote in the lower house of Congress, expected in April. If Rousseff loses in the lower house, an impeachment trial would start in the Senate, where a 2/3 vote would topple her from power.
Here is more on the political drama unfolding in Brazil.
- WHO: Ebola int’l health emergency over
The World Health Organization (WHO) declared that the Ebola outbreak in West Africa no longer constitutes an international emergency. WHO chief Margaret Chan explained that while Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone remain vulnerable to flare-ups, remaining isolated cases in the 3 countries can be contained. “The risk of international spread is now low,” said Chan.
Check out the full story on the WHO’s Ebola announcement.
- Patty Duke dies at 69
Oscar-winning actress and singer Patty Duke died Tuesday, March 29, after developing sepsis from a ruptured intestine. She was 69. Duke, whose real name was Anna Pearce, won an Academy Award at age 16 for her portrayal of deaf-blind political activist Helen Keller in The Miracle Worker. She then played “identical cousins” on The Patty Duke Show, which ran for more than 100 episodes in the mid-1960s.
Read more about the legacy of Patty Duke.
- 40 Bb Pilipinas bets meet the press
The 40 candidates of the Binibining Pilipinas 2016 pageant were formally introduced to the press on Tuesday, March 29. Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach also graced the press presentation and shared words of wisdom to the ladies. Coronation night is on April 17 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Take a look at the Bb Pilipinas 2016 candidates in their swimsuits.
- PH Azkals stun North Korea
The Philippine Azkals completed an endgame comeback to stun North Korea, 3-2, in the 2018 FIFA World Cup and 2019 Asian Cup second round qualifiers at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium. Misagh Bahadoran, Manny Ott, and Iain Ramsay scored the goals for the Philippines.Read this story on the Azkals’ victory over North Korea.