Daily News Highlights – May 23, 2016 Edition

Aika Rey

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

  1. Marcos camp vows to ‘challenge every COC’

    As Congress prepares to convene as the National Board of Canvassers (NBOC) on May 25 to canvass the votes for the president and the vice president, the team of VP candidate Ferdinand Marcos Jr issued a statement that signals that the process won’t be as easy this year compared to previous occasions. In a statement on Sunday, May 22, lawyer George Garcia, who heads Marcos’ legal team, said they will “scrutinize each and every COC for vice president and highlight the impossibility of the partial unofficial result.” Lawyer Jose Amorado of the senator’s quick count operations has earlier said that Marcos will win by more than 100,000 votes based on their own tally of at least 100 local certificates of canvass. The Marcos camp filed complaints before the Commission on Elections (Comelec) earlier questioning alleged irregularities in the unofficial canvass.

    Read more: Marcos lawyer: ‘We will challenge every COC’

  2. What’s behind the 2016 elections’ high voter turnout?

    On the evening of election day, May 9, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) announced that 84% of 54,363,329 Filipino voters trooped to polling precincts. This is only the second time in the last 2 decades when turnout breached the 80% mark. Some watchdog groups are suspicious of the turnout rate, seeing it as a possible indicator of cheating. But a sociologist says the personalities of the candidates may have also influenced more Filipinos to cast their ballots. Between 1992 and 2016, the highest voter turnout was during the 1998 presidential election, which the charismatic Joseph Estrada won. Around 86.1% or 29,474,309 out of 34,117,056 registered voters their ballots that election year.

    Read more: What’s behind the high voter turnout?

  3. 5 revelers die after Pasay City concert

    Five people are reported to have died following a concert early Sunday morning, May 22, in Pasay City. The victims – 4 males and one female – were found unconscious during the “Closeup Forever Summer” outdoor concert held at the Mall of Asia (MOA) concert grounds, investigating officer Giovanni Arcinue told Agence France-Presse. Police reports identified the fatalities as Bianca Fontejon, 18; Eric Anthony Miller, 33, an American; Ariel Leal, 22; and Lance Garcia, 36. A fifth victim, Ken Migawa, 18, later died at the San Juan de Dios Hospital. Arcinue said the cause of the victims’ collapse was still unknown although police were looking at possible heatstroke or dehydration as the country is sweltering under high temperatures brought on by the El Niño weather phenomenon. He also said it was too early to say that the deaths were caused by drug-laced drinks, despite rumors spreading on social media.

    Read more: Revelers die in Pasay City concert

  4. 2015 PH metal production down by 23% due to global ore prices drop

    The country’s metal production dropped by 23% to P108.21 billion last year – an exact reversal of the growth enjoyed in 2014. The Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) said in a statement that metallic production value in 2015 went down by 23% from 2014’s P140.15 billion. This means 2015’s performance lagged behind by P31.94 billion. This lackluster performance was due to the lower world metal prices brought about by excess supply and weaker global trade, the attached agency of Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) said. DENR said biggest losers in 2015 were the base metals nickel and copper, with shortfalls of 29% and 19%, respectively.

    Read more: PH metal production drops as world ore prices decrease

  5. Myanmar’s Suu Kyi, Kerry address ‘incendiary’ Rohingya issue

    In the United States’ first high level talks with Myanmar’s new civilian government, democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi on Sunday, May 22, addressed controversy over the use of the word “Rohingya” to describe the persecuted and stateless Muslim minority. Warning that use of the term risked inflaming communal tensions in Myanmar, Suu Kyi said her new government was determined to address deep hatreds in western Rakhine State, where tens of thousands of Rohingya are confined to squalid displacement camps after waves of deadly unrest with local Buddhists in 2012. Buddhist nationalists have staged protests across the country against using the term Rohingya. They label the group “Bengalis”, casting Myanmar’s more than one million Rohingya as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh. Suu Kyi, who has faced criticism internationally for not speaking up for the Rohingya, pledged to work towards a situation where the communities “live peacefully and securely outside the camps”.

    Read: Myanmar’s Suu Kyi, Kerry walk tightrope over ‘Rohingya’ question

  6. 750 South Africa families to be compensated for apartheid land loss

    Some 750 South African families who were descendants of people pushed out of their land on a natural reserve during apartheid will be handed over $5 million in compensation, President Jacob Zuma said Saturday. The government has decided to compensate the families rather than return their land because Kruger is now a major natural reserve. Since the end of apartheid rule in 1994, 3.3 million hectares (8.2 million acres) of land have been restituted to 1.9 million people, Nomfundo Ntloko-Gobodo, an official at the agriculture ministry, told Agence France-Presse.

    Read: S. Africa compensates 750 families for apartheid land loss

  7. Duterte: ‘hypocritical’ Catholic church ‘asking for favors’

    The Philippines’ president-elect blasted the Catholic church Sunday, May 22, for hypocrisy, saying the bishops who had condemned him during his campaign had been asking favors from the government. Rodrigo Duterte, who won the May 9 presidential elections by a landslide, caused outrage in the church hierarchy in December after making a rambling and obscenity-filled speech cursing the pope. Duterte, who has since flip-flopped between defiance and remorse over the remarks, directed his anger towards the bishops who had criticized his papal jibes. He accused the bishops of asking for money from the government, saying it was another form of corruption. “You know the most hypocritical institution? The Catholic church,” he said, in an ABS-CBN report.

    Read: Duterte blasts ‘hypocritical’ Catholic church

  8. International Space Station completes 100,000th orbit of Earth

    The International Space Station, the space laboratory that showcases cooperation between Russia and the United States, on Monday, May 16, orbited Earth for the 100,000th time, Russian mission control said. Traveling at an altitude of about 250 miles (400 kilometers) and a speed of about 17,500 miles (28,000 kilometers) per hour, the space station circles the Earth once every 90 minutes. Its “anniversary orbit” lasted from 7:35 am to 9:10 am Moscow time (0435 to 0610 GMT), mission control said. The ISS has now travelled 2.6 billion miles “or about the distance of 10 round trips to Mars,” NASA said on the station’s official Twitter feed. The first crew to inhabit the station – American astronaut Bill Shepherd and Russian cosmonauts Sergei Krikalev and Yuri Gidzenko – arrived in 2000, since when it has been continually occupied.

    Read: ISS completes 100,000th orbit of Earth – mission control

  9. Jaclyn Jose wins best actress at Cannes


    Filipino actress Jaclyn Jose won best actress at the Cannes film festival Sunday, May 22 for her mesmerizing performance as a mother forced to sell drugs to survive before falling prey to corrupt police. Variety magazine praised Jose for the “naturalistic grace” of her film performance, playing the matriarch of a family struggling to survive amid squalor. The daughter of a Filipina mother and a largely absent American serviceman father, Jose first became famous in Philippine showbiz circles for her ethereal beauty. But she has proven to be a versatile and hard-working actress, starring in dramas, comedies, horror stories, romances and television soap operas. She has won numerous acting awards in her native country and acted for some of its most prestigious filmmakers.

    Read: PH’s Jaclyn Jose wins best actress at Cannes

  10. Apple vs. Google: who will emerge on top?

    For a brief time early this year, Google parent Alphabet overtook Apple as the world’s largest company by market value. Apple then regained, lost, and recovered the leader position in May in a battle that appears set to continue for some time. At the close Friday, Apple was worth some $522 billion, to $496 billion for Alphabet. Apple has delivered a line of must-have iPhones and other gadgets that have set trends around the world but now “appears to be a little bit immobile,” says Roger Kay, analyst at Endpoint Technologies Associates. Apple shares have slumped some 30% over the past 12 months over concerns that its stunning growth pace is slowing and that the iPhone won’t be able to rake in profits as it has up to now. Analysts say Apple must find ways to keep its position as innovation leader. On the other hand, Google has been evolving from a pure search engine to a leader in mobile. Kay said the Android system, which powers some 80% of mobile handsets, is a valuable franchise that helps Google’s mobile advertising efforts.

    Read: Apple, Google locked in battle for supremacy

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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.