Today on Rappler.
- Senator Santiago hits Vice President Binay for criticizing the bill banning political dynasties.
- Newly-installed Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle assumes his new role as adviser to the Pope.
- Philippine capital markets hit three new record highs as investor confidence increases.
Story 1: MIRIAM TO BINAY: POLITICAL DYNASTIES IMMORAL
Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago hits Vice President Jejomar Binay for his criticism of bills seeking to ban political dynasties.
Santiago, author of the Senate version of the measure, disagrees with Binay’s media statements.
She makes her thoughts known during the budget deliberations for the Office of the Vice President, but Binay was not present in the hearing Monday.
The senator says politicians should not violate the spirit of the Constitution by allowing their family members to run for office just because there is no enabling law yet.
She says, “I warn you, not all that is legal is moral!”
Binay has 3 children running in the 2013 midterm polls.
Makati Mayor Junjun Binay and Makati 2nd District Representative Abigail Binay-Campos are seeking reelection while neophyte politician Nancy Binay-Angeles is running for senator.
In past interviews, Binay says there is nothing wrong with dynasties.
He says, “I don’t believe in dynasties.
Why will there be a law banning someone qualified for public service?”
Story 2: PERIOD OF AMENDMENTS ON RH BILL BEGINS
Reproductive Health bill advocates in Congress jumpstart the period of amendments on the controversial RH Bill.
Late Monday afternoon, Majority Floor Leader Neptali Gonzales II adopts a revised version of the bill as his own.
Congress accepts the amended bill through a voice vote, and adjourns the session immediately after the vote.
Gonzales — a known RH bill advocate — calls the vote a “small victory.”
Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman, the principal author of the bill, says he is confident they will – quote – win the war on the RH Bill by Christmas.
The bill’s critics – led by Deputy Speaker Pablo Garcia of Cebu – tries to stop the vote and says he will appeal when session resumes on Tuesday.
House speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr plans to meet with President Aquino to discuss the fate of the bill next week.
Story 3: ADVOCATES: OPEN SIN TAX HEARINGS TO PUBLIC
Supporters of the sin tax bill ask Congress to open bicameral conference committee meetings to the public to prevent so-called killer insertions that could water down the measure.
This week, the Senate and the House of Representatives are expected to assign committee members who will consolidate the different versions of the bill.
Department of Health consultant Anthony Leachon says Congress should break the tradition of secrecy in bicam meetings.
Sin tax bill advocates also do not want Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and Senators Ralph Recto, Ferdinand Marcos Jr, Francis Escudero, and Joker Arroyo to become members of the bicameral committee.
Arroyo and Escudero voted no to the Senate’s final version of the bill while Enrile, Recto and Marcos introduced various amendments.
The sin tax bill hurdled the Senate on November 20.
The approved bill raises the excise taxes on tobacco and alcohol, and targets additional revenues of 39.5 billion pesos for the government in the first year.
Story 4: DILG LAUNCHES FULL DISCLOSURE POLICY PORTAL
The Department of the Interior and Local Government launches the Full Disclosure Policy portal in partnership with the World Bank.
In the portal, local government units can upload financial documents and transactions, as required by law.
The portal aims to promote transparency and accountability, and help minimize corruption and the misuse of public funds.
It will be available to the public and help increase awareness of public funds, and which projects the money goes to.
DILG Undersecretary Austere Panadero says the portal and its accessibility are meant to trigger reform within LGUs.
He says, “We have raised the standards for good governance. We certainly hope this is something all of us will make full use of in the years to come.”
The launch coincides with the 100th day since the death of former Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo, who initiated the project during his term.
Story 5: ‘TERRIFIED’ TAGLE TAKES GLOBAL CENTER STAGE
Newly-installed Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle says he is “’terrified’ by the magnitude of the task at hand” as he assumes his new role as an adviser to the Pope.
The 55-year-old Manila Archbishop will now play a global role following his installation by Pope Benedict XVI.
On Saturday, the Pope also installed 5 other non-European cardinals in an hour-long ritual at the Vatican.
Tagle will be among 120 cardinals eligible to vote for the Pope’s successor.
He says becoming cardinal “is a grace of God.”
CARDINAL LUIS ANTONIO TAGLE, MANILA ARCHBISHOP: It was like a future coming to my present, in a way disturbing my present. I felt confused, I felt lost. I did not know what to say…And instead of me being the powerful one controlling my life… Jesus saying, ‘I am the power in your life. I will take over”, and he invites… to be part of this Church, of the servants.
Tagged by foreign journalists as a potential papal contender, Tagle is expected to wield huge influence over the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics.
Story 6: NAMFREL BACK AS COMELEC ARM
The Commission on Elections will accredit the National Citizens’ Movement for Free Elections as one of its citizens’ arms for the 2013 polls.
Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr says the poll body reaches a consensus but has yet to formally vote.
Brillantes says Namfrel will engage in “coordinated and cooperative actions” with the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting — another citizens’ arm accredited by the Comelec.
Namfrel is seen as PPCRV’s rival, especially during the 2010 elections when the Comelec did not accredit Namfrel.
Story 7: NBI LINKS PAGADIAN MAYOR TO PYRAMID SCAM
The National Bureau of Investigation will recommend the filing of graft and estafa charges against Pagadian City Mayor Samuel Co for his alleged involvement in a pyramid scam.
Co is one of the complainants against the Aman Futures Group, the firm behind the scam that victimized thousands in Visayas and Mindanao.
An alleged finance manager of the group says Co is also one of those who sought investors for the group.
Co is running for a congressional seat in the 2013 midterm elections.
Story 8: REBEL CONVOY HIT BY IEDs
Two explosions rock Maguindanao Monday, killing a member of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Movement and wounding 9 others.
BIFM spokesman Abu Misry Mama says two improvised explosive devices rip through convoys of BIFM members and supporters.
They were on their way to attend an Islamic symposium in an undisclosed location in Maguindanao.
The BIFM is a breakaway group of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.
Story 9: PH STOCK MARKET HITS THREE NEW RECORDS
The Philippine capital markets post 3 new records today — because of increasing investor confidence and rising remittances from Filipinos overseas.
The PSEi reaches its 29th record high for 2012 — closing at 5,579.42 points and surpassing the November 23 record close of 5,552.34 points.
This is the 52nd record high for the Aquino administration.
At the foreign exchange market, the peso hits a 56-month high closing at 41.06 to the dollar.
This brings the peso’s trading average at 41.157 against the dollar.
And at the bond market, the 364-day Treasury Bill rate hits a historic low of point-549 percent, surpassing the November 13 record lows for all T-bill tenors.
The yield for the 91-day T-bill reaches point-20 percent.
These rates are the lowest in the Treasury’s records which date back to 1987.
Story 10: PINOY RUNNER AIMS TO RUN AROUND THE WORLD
Broken Olympic dreams defeat even the toughest of athletes.
But a Filipino runner shows everyone why failure can never keep a good man down.
Katherine Visconti reports.
While many of us have trouble trudging to the gym, this 57-year-old wants to run around the world.
Cesar Guarin will have to run over 40 thousand kilometers to circle the globe, crossing 42 countries.
He’s already a third of the way through.
He still has to cover a distance roughly 14 times the length of the Philippines.
If Cesar succeeds, he will be the first Filipino and the first Asian to join a handful of global runners.
He says his favorite part of the journey is seeing other Filipinos working far from home- he can always count on them for a warm welcome.
CESAR GUARIN: Doing this global run, I don’t think about the physical challenge. What I think about is how can this be a significant event for the Filipino.
Like most success stories, Cesar’s is rooted in failure.
30 years ago, he wanted to be the first Filipino runner to win a gold medal in the Olympics. It’s a feat the country still has not achieved.
CESAR GUARIN: I did not make the trials. I’m not made to run fast, so every time I train for speed, my knees would really bog down.
The first time Cesar didn’t qualify for the Olympics, he ran across the Philippines to get over his frustration. The second time, he ran across the US.
On each leg of his race, Cesar typically runs 50 to 60 kilometers a day.
He plans to take off for the Middle East in February. He says it will probably take 4 more years to complete the incredible test of endurance.
And what then? Cesar’s sure of one thing… he will keep running.
CESAR GUARIN: I realize I want to do this until maybe I shut down. I look forward to it. I don’t think 50,000 kilometers or maybe more, I just want to keep doing it.
Katherine Visconti, Rappler Manila
Story 11: THE wRap: YOUR WORLD IN ONE READ
At number 7, The Chinese defense ministry announces Sunday the landing of a China-made J-15 fighter jet on the Liaoning — China’s first aircraft carrier.
It marks the first time China successfully lands a fighter jet on its new aircraft carrier, which entered into service in September.
This event signals Beijing’s ability to flex its military muscle in territorial disputes in both the East China Sea and the South China Sea.
The Liaoning is the former Soviet carrier Varyag, which was refurbished at the northeastern port of Dalian in China.
At number 9, Former PBA coach Bo Perasol is the new head coach of the Ateneo Blue Eagles.
He takes over the post vacated by Norman Black who steered the Blue Eagles through a “5-peat” or 5-straight-title victories in the UAAP.
Black is only the second coach in UAAP history to win 5 straight titles.
Ateneo de Manila University announces Perasol’s appointment Monday. He takes over on December 1.
The appointment of former Powerade coach Perasol signals a reconciliation between Manny Pangilinan and his alma mater.
It was Pangilinan who earlier hired Perasol to replace Black.
And at number 10, It’s YouTube’s most-watched video of all time: “Gangnam Style” by South Korean pop singer Psy.
The dance track video, which takes a hit at Gangnam, a rich community in Seoul, has recorded over 805 million views since its posting in July.
Best video winner in the 2012 MTV Europe Music Awards, “Gangnam Style” features Psy dancing as if he were trotting on a horse and spinning a lasso.
The dance has been performed by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
and Filipino prison inmates.
Story 12: AZKALS LOSES TO THAILAND IN OPENING MATCH OF THE SUZUKI CUP
The Azkals bow to Thailand in their opening match in the AFF Suzuki Cup 2012.
The War Elephants score 2 goals before halftime, and hold on in the second half to get the win.
Paul Mulders scores the only goal of the Philippines but the Azkals fail to score an equalizer as the match comes to a close.
The Azkals will face Vietnam in their next game but without Coach Michael Weiss.
Weiss was sent off for throwing the ball towards an opposing player.
The player was lying on the pitch taking his time to recover from an apparent injury.
The referee had no choice but to eject the visibly upset German.