Dear Rappler reader,
ASEAN 2017 dominated the past week, as the regional group grappled with Chinese pressure and judging from its Chairman’s message, had given in again. The side summit Prosperity For All was the gem of the week, providing insights from Malaysia PM Najib Razak, Vice President Leni Robredo and ASEAN Business advisory council chairman Joey Concepcion. But must-watch are the heart-warming videos of Palarong Pambansa on a father’s journey to watch his son compete as well as the struggles of a blind gold medalist.
Below are 11 videos you shouldn’t miss.
“It can’t be seen that ASEAN has totally given in to Chinese pressure,” a Southeast Asian diplomat in Manila for the event told Agence France Presse (AFP). Despite this sentiment, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in its Chairman’s Statement on Sunday, April 30, evaded China’s island building activities and Philippines’ legal victory against Beijing over the disputed South China Sea. Ahead of the summit, President Rodrigo Duterte said the Philippines and other nations were helpless to stop Chinese artificial island building in areas they claimed, so there was no point discussing it at diplomatic events such as Saturday’s summit. But diplomats said other ASEAN nations, unhappy with intense Chinese lobbying of the Philippines, had sought to toughen up the chairman’s statement. Watch the Summit highlights on Day 4, when President Duterte hosts Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen, Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Indonesian President Joko Widodo, Thailand Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, Brunei Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, Laos Prime Minister Thoungloun Sisoluith and Myanmar State Counsellor and Foreign Minister Aung San Suu Kyi. After the event, the Phillippine President joked about cancelling the November ASEAN summit.
“We must also be resolute in realizing a drug-free ASEAN. The scourge of illegal drugs threatens our gains in community-building,” said President Rodrigo Duterte as he formally opened the 30th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit. Duterte’s emphasis on a regional fight against drugs is not surprising, given his war against drugs is a central theme of his presidency.
“We do not want our citizens to be marginalized. In the age of extremism and radicalization, there is a practical reason for that.” In his first address on the sidelines of the ASEAN Summit in Manila, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak says the region can avoid the wave of populism felt in other parts of the world by making sure its people benefit from economic growth.
“ASEAN is inclusive not exclusive, it is isn’t just for the benefit of the large firms out there or the [economically successful] countries among the 10 nations.” ASEAN Business advisory council chairman Joey Concepcion explains the formula for empowering small entrepreneurs around the region and why it is important to do so. He added, “It is to benefit all 10 nations and every person within them. Its all about large businesses embracing small.”
On the sidelines, PLDT chief Manuel Pangilinan said that If Rocket Internet continues to behave at low levels, then PLDT may need to provision further. PLDT owns around 6.4% stake in Rocket Internet.
“While the number of Asian billionaires are growing, ASEAN is still home to many of the world’s poor,” Vice President Leni Robredo urged business leaders and policy makers in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) region to create “inclusive business models” that will help the poor.
Who are some of the richest individuals in ASEAN and how huge is their wealth? The driving force behind ASEAN’s economic growth are the families who continue to run some of the biggest corporations and businesses in the region.
“Goods produced domestically may not be the cheapest option for the value you want,” Ronald Mendoza, Dean of the Ateneo School of Government, discussed ways in which ASEAN cooperation can benefit you directly.
“We were challenged to go to Palarong Pambansa via tricycle. My son is more inspired when we watch his matches.” Parents of an athlete at the Palarong Pambansa 2017 literally went the extra mile to show support for their son who was supposed to compete at the sports event. Ariel Tapang drove more than 1,000 kilometers from Kidapawan to Antique, traversing through land and crossing a couple of islands in Visayas and Mindanao.
Also watch the blind athlete who clinches a gold in Palarong Pambansa’s long jump event.
Though he gained support among well-to-do Filipinos, he appears to be losing trust among the poorest. Pulse Asia Research Director Ana Maria Tabunda talked to Rappler about President Rodrigo Duterte’s trust and approval ratings and the continued support of Filipinos for the war on drugs.
Asked if he would “block” the franchise of ABS-CBN, Duterte said, “Yes, if you’re engaged in swindling.” President Rodrigo Duterte lashed out at media giant ABS-CBN who he accuses of swindling. But Palawan 1st District Representative Franz Alvarez, chair of the House committee on legislative franchises, clarified the ABS-CBN franchise is not up for urgent renewal.
What would make a case prosper at the ICC? Last April 24, lawyer Jude Sabio requested the International Criminal Court to hold President Rodrigo Duterte accountable for alleged “mass murder” in the Philippines. Harvard Law professor and former ICC investigation and prosecution coordinator Alex Whiting explained the process to Rappler. – Rappler.com
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