May 26, 2014 Edition

Valerie Castro

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

  1. Guingona leads list of senators richer in 2013 than 2012

    Senator Teofisto “TG” Guingona, chair of the Senate blue ribbon committee investigating the pork barrel scam, gained the most in terms of wealth in 2013 compared to the previous year. His latest Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth mirrored an increase of more than double – from P43.5 million in 2012 to P114.95 million in 2013. Among the 3 senators charged with plunder before the Office of the Ombudsman, Senators Jinggoy Estrada and Juan Ponce Enrile were also richer compared to 2012. Of the 3, only Senator Bong Revilla reported a decrease in wealth from P171.94 million in 2012 to P151.51 million in 2013.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  2. New houses of senators undeclared in SALNs

    Two senators have not declared in their latest Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN) the new multi-million-peso houses they had reportedly built for themselves. After admitting the new house in Wack-Wack Subdivision being built in 2013 was his, Senator Jinggoy Estrada failed to list the property in his latest SALN. Likewise, Senator Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr did not include in his SALN the new house which his Ayala Alabang neighbors say is also his. He has kept quiet about ownership, unlike Estrada. SALN guidelines say that even real properties “not yet titled” shall form part of the SALN declaration of public officials.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  3. Doctor says Napoles can be discharged May 29

    File photo courtesy of the PNP PIO

    A doctor attending to alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim Napoles told a Makati court she can be discharged by Thursday, May 29. Confined at the Makati Hospital for two months now to remove a mass in her uterus, attending doctor and ob-gyn Florentina Villanueva said Napoles has been “responding to the medications” and that in a few days’ time, can already be discharged. Originally set to leave the hospital by Friday, May 23, following a May 20 court order, Napoles asked for an extension of her stay due to “excessive vaginal bleeding.” This prompted her doctors to withdraw on May 21 their earlier discharge order. Judge Elmo Alameda ordered Napoles’ doctors to submit a progress report on her medical condition by Monday, May 26. She is expected to submit this week a signed affidavit on pork barrel scam transactions.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  4. PH Bishops to pork scam perpetrators: Admit wrongdoings

     Photo by Noli Yamsuan/Archdiocese of Manila

    The influential Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines urged perpetrators of the pork barrel scam to “come out and admit their wrongdoings.” In a statement issued Saturday, May 24, the CBCP through its president, Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas, said an those implicated should allow an “impartial investigation to take place” and not use the power of their office to obstruct the pursuit of truth. The bishops also said they were “shocked, together with our people, at the amount of money squandered when there are so many in great need.”

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  5. Protesters defy Thai army junta

     Photo by Diego Azubel/EPA

    More than a thousand protesters took to the streets of Bangkok Sunday, May 26, in defiance of an army junta that seized power on Thursday. Shouting “Get out!” the protesters marched from Chidlom district and headed toward the Victory Monument. The junta, led by General Prayut Chan-O-Cha, had disbanded the Senate, curbed civil liberties, imposed media restrictions, and summoned politicians and even academics critical of the coup. The military has also detained former premier Yingluck Shinawatra and said she would be held for up to a week. Prayut, said to be aligned with the anti-Thaksin bloc, had earlier said, “What I am doing in my security capacity – if I upset anyone, I apologize but it is necessary.” The BBC reported that.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

    A related story on the detention of Yingluck is also on Rappler.

    The story on the Thai army’s coup is likewise on Rappler.

  6. Restore Thai democracy, Human Rights Watch asks

    Photo by Rungroj Yongrit/EPA

    Human Rights Watch has called for the “urgent” restoration of Thailand’s democracy, following a military coup and declaration of martial law on May 20 in the Southeast Asian nation. The Thai media has been put under tight control – all public and private television and radio stations were ordered to broadcast only army feeds, criticism of the military and the political situation was not allowed to be broadcast, and Internet service providers were directed to enforce strict self-censorship of content related to the Thai situation. Brad Adams, Asia director of Human Rights Watch, said in a statement that Thailand’s friends and allies “should demand an end to this assault on the media. In a political crisis, free speech is needed more than ever.”

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  7. French far-right wins in EU vote

    Yoan Valat/EPA

    A political earthquake shook France as the far-right National Front won in elections for the European Parliament. The anti-immigration and anti-European Union party led by Marine Le Pen garnered 26% of the vote, guaranteeing them about one-third of France’s 74 seats in the European Parliament. The Socialist Party of President Francois Hollande was a poor third with just 13.8% of the votes. The center-right Union for a Popular Movement was second with 20.6%. Le Pen’s FN is seen to have benefited largely from widespread disillusionment with the mainstream parties, which have been beset by scandals over alleged corruption and cronyism.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

    A related story is on the BBC.

  8. Pope: Israeli-Palestinian conflict must end

    Photo by Fadi Arouri/EPA

    After taking a spontaneous stop at the West Bank separation wall during his 3-day visit to the Middle East, Pope Francis called for an end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which he described as increasingly unacceptable. The 77-year-old pontiff said, “The time has come to put an end to this situation which has become increasingly unacceptable.” The pope invited Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas and Israeli President Shimon Peres to the Vatican for a “heartfelt prayer” for peace. His visit to the Middle East began in Jordan on Saturday, May 24.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  9. ‘Miss Saigon’ returns to London stage

    After more than a year of preparation and months of rehearsals, the much anticipated return of the hit musical Miss Saigon opened at the Prince Edward Theater in London. Filipino-American Eva Noblezada plays Kim, taking over Lea Salonga who was in the original cast, along with Jonathan Pryce who played the role of the engineer. Jon Jon Briones is the new engineer, while Alistair Brammer plays Chris, taking over from Simon Bowman. Singer Rachelle Ann Go joins the cast as Gigi van Tranh, a role that singer Isay Alvarez took on in the 1989 production. Miss Saigon is about a Vietnamese bar girl Kim who falls in love with an American G.I. Chris during the Vietnam war.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

  10. Julianne Moore is best actress at Cannes

    Photo from Facebook

    In the 67th Cannes Film Festival on Saturday, May 24, Julianne Moore bagged the best actress prize for her role as a shallow starlet in Maps to the Stars. She plays the role of an ageing actress increasingly sidelined by an industry that prefers youth. Turkey’s Nuri Bilge took home the prized Palme d’Or for his “Winter Sleep,” a 3-hour film which revolves around 3 characters – a wealthy retired actor living with his much younger wife and his recently divorced sister. Britain’s Timothy Spall was chosen best actor for Mr Turner, a historical biopic about 19th century painter JMW Turner.

    Read the full story on Rappler.

    The story on Cannes’ best picture is also on Rappler.

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