Daily News Highlights – May 12, 2016 Edition

Aika Rey

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

  1. Duterte transition team formed

    The members of Rodrigo Duterte’s Transition Committee were finalized on Wednesday, May 11, following a call from President Benigno Aquino III to Duterte’s staff to get started on the transition between administrations. Duterte spokesman Peter Laviña posted the names of the committee members on his Facebook page. They include himself, Duterte’s executive assistant Christopher “Bong” Go, campaign manager and Maribojoc Mayor Leoncio “Jun” Evasco, former agriculture secretary Carlos “Sonny” Dominguez, and lawyers Salvador “Bingbong” Medialdea and Loreto Ata.

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  2. Dilma Rousseff nears probable suspension in impeachment vote

    Brazil’s President Dilma Rousseff was just hours from probable suspension late Wednesday, May 11, ahead of an impeachment trial that could end 13 years of leftist rule in Latin America’s biggest country. In a marathon debate in the Senate, momentum was clearly gathering against Rousseff, who is accused of illegal accounting maneuvers to hide budget holes in an election year. Voting was expected in the early hours of Thursday, May 12. A simple majority in the 81-member Senate will trigger Rousseff’s 6-month suspension pending the outcome of her impeachment trial.

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  3. Mossack Fonseca to begin legal action against Panama papers leak

    The law firm at the center of the Panama Papers scandal says it is filing suit against the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) for the leak of information it says is false. The public gained its first access to the Panama Papers records of over 200,000 secret offshore companies when the ICIJ put a searchable database online earlier Monday, May 9.

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  4. Philippine stocks highest in 9 months following elections

    Philippine stocks on Wednesday, May 11, posted their highest close since August 2015, as investors cheered on the generally peaceful and orderly elections that saw presumptive president Rodrigo Duterte emerge on top. Two days after the country’s elections, the Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) gained 221 points or 3.09% to close at 7,369.52. All Shares also surged by 116.07 points or 2.72% to 4,388.31.

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  5. 94 dead in ISIS-claimed car bombings

    Three car bombs in Baghdad, including a huge blast at a market in a Shiite area, killed at least 94 people on Wednesday, May 11, the bloodiest day in the Iraqi capital this year. The attacks, all claimed by the Islamic State (ISIS) group, came with the government locked in a political crisis that some have warned could undermine the fight against ISIS.

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  6. Duterte to enact executive order to push Freedom of Information bill

    Presumptive president Mayor Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte says if Congress is not keen on passing the Freedom of Information (FOI) bill, then his first act once he assumes office will be to issue an Executive Order (EO) on the FOI. Asked what to expect on the first day of his presidency, Duterte said, “Unahan ko na (FOI). I will issue an executive order. All. Hindi na kailangan ng batas (no need for a law),” he said. President Benigno Aquino III earlier included the passage of the FOI in his campaign promises but failed to muster enough support in Congress.

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  7. Italy set to green light gay civil unions

    Italy’s parliament on Wednesday, May 11, gave a green light for the introduction of gay civil unions in the last major Western country not to legally recognize same-sex relationships. Lawmakers in the lower-house Chamber of Deputies voted 369-193 in favor of a vote of confidence in the government which makes final approval of the divisive civil unions bill automatic. The long-awaited and much-disputed legislation was hailed as a civil rights landmark but also criticized as falling short of full equality for gay couples, particularly in relation to adoption rights. The bill itself was expected to be voted later Wednesday.

    Read more on Rappler

  8. Solar Impulse 2 readies itself for next leg of round-the-world trip

    The Solar Impulse 2 will resume its record-breaking quest on Thursday, May 12, to circle the globe without consuming a drop of fuel, with a flight from Arizona to Oklahoma. The experimental sun-powered plane, piloted by Swiss adventurer Bertrand Piccard, is set to take off from Phoenix at 3:00 am (1000 GMT). After being grounded for several months to undergo repairs, the plane resumed its round-the-world voyage in April, flying from Hawaii to California. It then flew to Phoenix on May 2. It is expected to make one or two more stops in the United States before landing in New York City.

    Read more on Rappler

  9. Bakeshop to give away P5 million in ‘Duterte cakes’

    Quim’s Cafe and Bakeshop in Tomas Morato is set to give out 5 million worth of cakes, as a promise made should Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte win in the 2016 elections. In November 2015, Jack Labang, a pastry chef from Quim’s Cake expressed his sentiments on the presidential bid of poll front-runner Rodrigo Duterte. Labang criticized the Mayor for being a “liar” when he officially ran for office after repeatedly saying that he will not. Labang has since then taken down the post. Labang challenged Duterte’s supporters that if Duterte wins, he will distribute P5 million worth of cake samples for free. With the overwhelming victory of Duterte evident, the bakeshop posted a statement on Facebook saying it would stay true to its word.

    Read more on Rappler

  10. George R.R. Martin posts new ‘Winds of Winter’ excerpt

    Author George R.R. Martin has released a chapter from a yet-unpublished book in the Game of Thrones series – the basis of the hit HBO TV show – but says he’s not done writing. “You want to know what the Sand Snakes, Prince Doran, Areo Hotah, Ellaria Sand, Darkstar and the rest will be up to in Winds of Winter? Quite a lot, actually,” Martin wrote in a blog post late Tuesday, May 10. The text follows the journey of Arianne, the daughter of Doran Martell, to the castle of Mistwood that is the home of the Mertyns. Her character has not appeared in the television series.

    Read more on Rappler

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Aika Rey

Aika Rey is a business reporter for Rappler. She covered the Senate of the Philippines before fully diving into numbers and companies. Got tips? Find her on Twitter at @reyaika or shoot her an email at aika.rey@rappler.com.