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- Comelec hit for ‘lack of urgency’
Former Comelec Commissioner Gregorio Larrazabal criticized the poll body for its supposed lack of urgency in its preparations for the May 9 elections. Larrazabal said one issue is about the Comelec’s new rule which would allow voters to get replacement ballots if vote-counting machines reject their original ballots. He warned that the poll body could run out of ballots if this pushes through. Election lawyer Emil Marañon III, meanwhile, said the Comelec seems “obsessed with superficial and cosmetic reforms” at the expense of “critical matters.”
Read more about their concerns.
- Roxas: Don’t believe lies about Yolanda
Liberal Party standard-bearer Manuel Roxas II urged Leyte locals not to believe the “mudslinging” and “lies” from his opponents. In a campaign rally, Roxas said that he never abandoned the people of Leyte when Super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) struck in 2013, and that he did all he could to help them. Roxas was – and is still – being accused of not doing enough.
Here’s the full story on Roxas’ campaign rally in Leyte.
- Pacquiao: I can draw crowds
Sarangani Representative and United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) senatorial candidate Manny Pacquiao said his presence at sorties will likely attract bigger crowds in the last 3 weeks of the campaign period. On Tuesday, April 19, Pacquiao had joined UNA on the campaign trail for just the second time. The world boxing champ said he can help UNA standard-bearer Vice President Jejomar Binay by letting voters know about Binay’s accomplishments.
Take a look at the UNA sorties with Pacquiao on Tuesday.
- AMLC files civil forfeiture case vs Wong
The Philippines’ Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) filed a civil forfeiture case against casino junket agent Kam Sin “Kim” Wong, one of the individuals linked to the $81-million Bangladesh Bank fund heist. The case covers the $4.63 million and P38.28 million that Wong previously turned over to AMLC separately. Aside from Wong, other junket operators as well as casinos will also face cases, said AMLC Executive Director Julia Bacay-Abad.
Get details about the AMLC’s bid to seize assets linked to the heist.
- 1,700 still missing in Ecuador quake
Around 1,700 people remain missing 3 days after a powerful earthquake struck Ecuador. The death toll, so far, stands at 480, with 2,560 injured. Hundreds of emergency workers from Colombia, Mexico, El Salvador, Spain, and other countries are helping Ecuadorian authorities search for survivors, but hopes are fading.
Check the latest developments in the aftermath of the Ecuador quake.
- ‘ISIS fighters come from 70 countries’
A treasure trove of thousands of personnel files revealed that Islamic State (ISIS) fighters come from more than 70 countries. The files came from an ISIS defector who handed them over to US television network NBC, which then passed them to the Combating Terrorism Center (CTC). The leading nationality was Saudi Arabian (579 new fighters), followed by Tunisian (559).
Here’s a look at the findings of the CTC.
- Historic deal set to be signed
Representatives of more than 160 nations will gather in New York on Friday, April 22, for the signing of the historic climate change agreement reached in Paris. Among the world leaders expected to attend – French President Francois Hollande and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Countries which do not sign this Friday can do so within the year that follows.
Read more about the landmark signing of the climate change deal.
- Viber 6.0 adds end-to-end encryption
Users of Viber 6.0 and higher are now automatically protected by end-to-end encryption. The encryption will show different types of color-coded locks depending on the situation. Viber also introduced a feature called hidden chat, which enables users to hide specific one-on-one or group conversations from the “chats” screen.
Find out about Viber’s new features.
- Ex-UFC champ Conor McGregor retires
Former UFC featherweight champion Conor McGregor shocked the sports world by announcing his retirement and withdrawing from his fight at UFC 200 in Las Vegas. The 27-year-old Irish fighter broke the news on Twitter, saying he had decided to “retire young.” McGregor’s mixed martial arts record is 19-3 (7-1 in UFC).
Get more details about McGregor’s early retirement.
- Pia Wurtzbach gets PHLPost stamps
Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach formally received her limited edition stamps during the winners’ tea party of Binibining Pilipinas. In a statement, PHLPost Postmaster General Joel Otarra said that Pia now joins “the roster of PHLPost’s Living Legends.” Pia, meanwhile, said it is an honor to be featured on the limited edition stamps.
Check out the Pia Wurtzbach stamps.