Court of Appeals

Rappler Newscast | August 13, 2013

Rappler.com
DOJ will file graft charges against lawmakers tagged in PDAF scam. Abad: abstinence is “100% effective." Typhoon Labuyo leaves at least 4 dead.

Today on Rappler.

  • The justice department will file graft charges against lawmakers tagged in the pork barrel scam.
  • Supreme Court justice Abad says abstinence is an alternative to contraception that’s “100% effective”.
  • Typhoon Labuyo — international name Utor — leaves at least 4 people dead with damages reaching P69-M.

Story 1: DOJ: SOLONS IN PDAF SCAM TO BE CHARGED
Justice Secretary Leila de Lima says the department will file graft charges “in a few weeks” against the lawmakers involved in the multi-million peso pork barrel scam.
Whistleblower Benhur Luy identified 5 senators and 23 congressmen, but a source tells Rappler more lawmakers than those Luy initially identified are misusing their funds.
Rappler’s own investigation found at least 49 lawmakers whose funds were coursed through the National Agri-Business Corporation and misused by non-governmental organizations from 2007-2011.
De Lima says investigators were –quote– “able to confirm the involvement of some lawmakers.”.

Story 2: CARDINAL TAGLE CRIES OVER PORK SCAM
Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle breaks his silence on the pork barrel issue, denouncing the multi-million scam as “heartbreaking.”

LUIS ANTONIO CARDINAL TAGLE, MANILA ARCHBISHOP: Sino bang Pilipino na merong pagmamahal sa bayan ang hindi mababagabag, at lalo na kung ikaw ay may kaunting pagsunod kay Hesus? Parang nadudurog ang puso mo na, kaya bang gawin ito ng tao sa kapwa tao? (What kind of Filipino who has love for country will not feel disturbed, especially if you follow Jesus? It’s like your heart is broken into pieces in asking, can one really do this to one’s neighbor?)

Breaking into tears, Tagle urges politicians and those involved in the scam to visit the homes of the poor.

LUIS ANTONIO CARDINAL TAGLE, MANILA ARCHBISHOP: Siguro maglakad-lakad kayo sa gabi, kapag nasa bangketa ka na, makikita mo ‘yung… ‘yung mga pamilya na nagbubukas ng kariton, para doon matulog. Mahawakan lang ninyo ang kamay ng mga mahihirap. Siguro naman maaantig ang inyong puso, sana. (Maybe you could walk around at night, and when you reach the alleys where the poor live, you can see the… the families who open their carts, to sleep there. Hold their hands. I hope it will move your hearts – hopefully.)

Tagle is the most prominent Catholic figure to speak on the scam, where lawmakers allegedly gave away their funds in exchange for commissions.
In July, the vice president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines also criticized the pork barrel as a tool to –quote– “strengthen the clutch of politicians to power.”
Senators and lawmakers though refuse to investigate the scam that involves their colleagues.

Story 3: KAPUNAN: NAPOLES IS SCAPEGOAT OF CORRUPT LAWMAKERS
The lawyer of alleged pork barrel queen Janet Lim-Napoles says her client was a “convenient” scapegoat for politicians who misused their pork barrel.
In an episode of GMA News to Go, lawyer Lorna Kapunan says Napoles doesn’t know where the allegations are coming from because she has no contract with the government.
Kapunan says reports linking Napoles to the scam is an orchestrated media campaign to attack her client.
She adds, “Anything that is PDAF-related is now a Napoles scam.” 

Story 4: JUSTICE: ABSTINENCE IS 100% EFFECTIVE
On Day 4 of the oral arguments on the Reproductive Health law at the Supreme Court, Associate Justice Roberto Abad pushes for abstinence as a –quote– “100% effective” alternative to contraception.
Abad faces former Albay Rep Edcel Lagman, one of the authors of the law who defended the measure Tuesday.
The RH law funds the distribution of free contraceptives and requires government hospitals to provide reproductive health services.
Critics oppose the measure, saying it promotes abortion and violates the constitutional provision on the right to life.
But Lagman says the provision intends to prevent Congress and the High Court from legalizing abortion, not to prevent contraception.
Lagman adds, contraception is universally recognized as the best way to prevent unwanted pregnancies.
But Abad counters, “Proper withdrawal is 96% effective. Abstinence is 100% effective!”
The justice says he is concerned the law will promote the massive distribution of contraception in the country.
Lagman disputes this, saying the law promotes all forms of family planning.
Sen Pia Cayetano also defends the controversial measure, saying, “In the guise of protecting the unborn and shielding women from the ills of contraceptives, petitioners overstep their bound and transgress the rights of women.”

Story 5: TYPHOON LABUYO: 4 DEAD, P69-M IN DAMAGE
Typhoon Labuyo — international name Utor — leaves at least 4 people dead, 6 injured and 11 missing as it leaves the Philippines late Monday after battering Luzon.
The typhoon destroys more than P69.2-M worth of properties.
Local rescue teams are conducting search operations for the 11 missing, including 9 fishermen missing in Camarines Norte and Bolinao, Pangasinan.
The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council says more than 27,000 families or 137,000 people are affected by the typhoon.
Rescuers clear landslide-choked roads Tuesday, in an effort to reach isolated villages devastated by the typhoon.
Towns placed under a state of calamity are Casiguran, Dilasag, and Dinalungan in Aurora; and the towns of Masinloc and Candelaria in Zambales.

Story 6: ROSARIO MAYOR FILES CEASE AND DESIST ORDER VS PETRON
The mayor of the Cavite town affected by the Manila Bay oil spill files a cease-and-desist order against the Petron oil depot responsible for the leak.
Rosario Mayor Jose Ricafrente says he filed the order a day after the Philippine Coast Guard confirmed a submerged pipeline leading to the oil depot was the source of 500,000 liters of oil that leaked into Manila Bay on August 8.
In a statement Monday, Petron apologizes for the spill and promises to help affected fishermen.
Ricafrente says he wants Petron to transfer oil by land instead of using submerged pipes.
Asked if he supports the mayor’s move, Cavite Governor Jonvic Remulla says, “I don’t know enough [about the circumstances]. We don’t know if it’s negligence, sabotage, or force majeure. We can’t be knee-jerk about this.”
He adds, Petron is consulting with fisherfolk on compensation for the effect of the oil spill on their livelihood.

Story 7: PNOY TO PNP: UNITE, PRIORITIZE THE PEOPLE
On the 112th Police Service Anniversary of the Philippine National Police, President Benigno Aquino tells police: unite and work for the people.
Aquino calls for an end to individualistic efforts and challenges them to work together towards public service.
While Aquino praises the police’s achievements, he also warns officers who are –quote– “champions of violence.”

BENIGNO AQUINO III, PHILIPPINE PRESIDENT: Sa katotohanan, mayroon pa ring mga scalawag na kailangang purgahin mula sa inyong hanay. Di ko nga po maiwasang isipin, bakit nga ba nagsusulputan itong mga kasong mismong ang mga pulis pa ang sangkot. Tuloy, ang kagagawan lang ng ilan, para bang pinagbabayaran ng buong institusyon. (There are still misfits we need to purge from your ranks. I can’t conceive how the police are in the erring side of some cases. It’s as if the whole institution has to pay for of the misdeeds of some.)

Aquino also promises to support the PNP, emphasizing the P9-billion budget allotted for the modernization and reforms in the PNP.

Story 8: ‘SLAP HILLARY’ GAME CAUSES UPROAR
Anti-violence groups slam an online game that allows players to virtually slap former US State Secretary Hillary Clinton.
A group called The Hillary Project is behind the “Slap Hillary” game, saying its mission is to keep Clinton out of the White House.
There is speculation the former secretary of state will run for president in 2016.
The Hillary Project defends the game, saying Democrats did not complain when the “Slap Sarah Palin” game surfaced in 2008.
Palin was the Republican Party nominee for Vice President in the 2008 polls.

Story 9: CLEARED FOR TAKE OFF: NZ JETPACK GETS FLIGHT PERMIT
A personalized jetpack developed in New Zealand is cleared for takeoff, with aviation regulators granting developers a flying permit to conduct manned test flights.
The jetpack is the brainchild of inventor Glenn Martin.
Inspired by childhood television shows like “Lost in Space,” Martin set out in the early 1980s to create a jetpack that ordinary people can use.
The jetpack consists of a pair of cylinders with propulsion fans attached to a free-standing carbon-fiber frame and controlled with joysticks.
Martin Aircraft chief executive Peter Coker says a version of the jetpack for the military should be ready by mid-2014.
A simpler model for the general public is expected to be on the market in 2015.
The machine though comes with a hefty price tag of $150,000 to $250,000.

Story 10: THE wRap: YOUR WORLD IN ONE READ
At number 3, the British government is considering taking legal action against Spain over stringent border checks imposed at the border with Gibraltar.
Britain says the checks are –quote– “politically motivated and totally disproportionate.”
But Spain says it’s considering taking the dispute over Gibraltar to the United Nations and International Court of Justice at The Hague.
Spain ceded Gibraltar to Britain in perpetuity in 1713.

At number 4, Suspected Islamist extremists shoot 44 worshippers at a mosque and 12 others in a nearby village in Nigeria’s restive northeast.
The attacks are believed to be in retaliation after citizen vigilante groups helped the military battle Islamist extremist group Boko Haram.
The group has been waging an insurgency since 2009.
The violence comes as Nigeria’s military pursues an offensive to end the insurgency.

And at number 7, Smartphone maker BlackBerry says it is examining –quote– “strategic alternatives,” which could involve putting itself up for sale.
The Canadian firm says it is considering –quote– “possible joint ventures, strategic partnerships or alliances, a sale of the company or other possible transactions.”
The announcement comes with BlackBerry overshadowed in the smartphone market, dominated by Apple’s iPhone and makers using Google’s Android OS.

– Rappler.com

Newscast production staff

EXECUTIVE PRODUCER / WRITER Lilibeth Frondoso
DIRECTOR Rupert Ambil
ASSOCIATE PRODUCER / PUBLISHER Rodneil Quiteles
  Dindin Reyes
HEAD WRITER / PROMPTER Katerina Francisco
MASTER EDITOR / PLAYBACK Vicente Roxas
  Exxon Ruebe
TECHNICAL DIRECTOR / CAMERAMAN Charlie Salazar
  Adrian Portugal
  Francis Lopez
  Naoki Mengua
GRAPHICS Jessica Lazaro
  Matthew Hebrona