Today on Rappler.
- Senatorial candidate Richard Gordon brings the source code review to the Supreme Court.
- The Philippine Stock Exchange Index breaches the 7,200 level after the Philippines gets a credit upgrade.
- For the 4th straight year, the Philippines remains 3rd in a global impunity index.
Story 1: GORDON BRINGS SOURCE CODE ISSUE TO SC
Senatorial candidate Richard Gordon asks the Supreme Court to order the poll body to show local groups the source code of the ballot-counting machines.
The source code is the “master blueprint” that contains instructions for the precinct count optical scan machines or PCOS machines.
On Friday, Gordon’s lawyers file a Petition for Mandamus before the high court to allow political parties to examine and review the source code.
But Commission on Elections chair Sixto Brillantes says it’s “too late” to allow local groups to do a source code review because a legal battle between two international companies blocks the release of the code.
Gordon says Section 14 of the Automated Election Law states Comelec –quote– “shall promptly make the source code of that technology available and open to any interested political party or groups which may conduct their own review.”
He says this means the requirement is mandatory and should be enforced by the poll body.
Gordon adds, “Placed in the wrong hands, the source code could be manipulated and used to systematically subvert and frustrate the people’s will.”
In a phone interview with Rappler, Brillantes says political parties PMP and PDP-Laban reviewed the source code for another part of the automated election system, the consolidated canvassing system.
Brillantes says Gordon’s party, Bagumbayan, did not apply to review the source code.
The Comelec chair adds Gordon can have the PCOS source code reviewed once it is in Comelec’s custody.
Brillantes earlier said the local source code review is important only for the credibility of the elections, NOT for its legality or legitimacy.
He cites a source code review done in February by international group SLI Global Solutions, which reports there is no “malicious code” in the PCOS.
Story 2: LP SLAMS UNA’S ER EJERCITO FOR USING PNOY IN POSTERS
The Liberal Party slams incumbent Laguna Gov ER Ejercito Estregan for using President Benigno Aquino’s photos in his campaign materials.
LP Secretary General Mel Sarmiento says this is –quote—“deception of highest order.”
Estregan belongs to the opposition United Nationalist Alliance.
He is also the nephew of former President and UNA head Joseph Estrada.
In a statement Friday, Sarmiento says Estregan’s campaign materials, which reportedly have Aquino’s photo, make it seem as if Aquino is endorsing him.
LP gubernatorial candidate Egay San Luis says, “The use of these types of deception is a type of politics that insults the intelligence of the voters and destroys the dignity of public service just to get votes.”
Aquino tells voters during his provincial visits not all who use yellow in campaigns are on his side.
Laguna is the fifth vote-richest province in the country with 1.5 million registered voters for 2013.
Story 3: ECLEOS CLASH AS SENTIMENT FOR CHANGE GROWS
New province Dinagat Islands is among five provinces in the country with the lowest income.
The politics is dominated by the Ecleo clan, regarded as royalty by the locals because of the family’s alleged healing powers.
Voltaire Tupaz reports.
A pregnant 23-year-old Julieta Javeliano walks into this clinic in Dinagat Islands in the dead of night.
Her left breast is swollen and red. She fears she has cancer.
ANACLETO VELEZ, PBMA MISSIONARY: Tunaw na talaga ang cyst. Nana na, so binuksan [ko] through prayer. Wala kaming instrument na gamit. (There was already pus, so I opened [the breast] through prayer. We didn’t use any instrument.)
The Philippine Benevolent Missionaries Association is founded by the late Ruben Ecleo Sr, known as the “Divine Master.”
Ecleo Sr’s healing powers has enticed not just believers but also voters.
This and mining operations that scarred the mountains of Dinagat built this palace called the “White Castle.”
GLENDA ECLEO, DINAGAT ISLANDS GOVERNOR: Noong nag-boom yung chromite. I had 3 MPSAs. Doon ko yun…para bang katas ng Dinagat Island. (During the chromite mining boom, I had 3 Mineral Production Sharing Agreements. It’s a fruit of mining in Dinagat Island.)
At least 12 members of the Ecleo clan hold elective positions.
Under the Nacionalista Party, Glenda is running again for governor. Her son Benglen, for vice governor; her twins – Allan 1 and Allan 2 for re-election as mayors; and daughter Gwen for congresswoman.
But for the first time in 4 decades, the Ecleos’ grip on power is challenged by one of their own.
Vice governor Jade Ecleo is running against her mother Glenda for governor on a platform of hope and reform.
She’s backed by the Liberal Party and a line-up that includes activist congresswoman Kaka Bag-ao.
JADE ECLEO, DINAGAT ISLANDS VICE GOVERNOR: Hindi pa ako tapos, eh. Ang mga kapatid ko, pabalik-balik na lang sila. Naka 9 years na sila as mayor. Balik na naman. Ako one term lang ako as governor. Hindi pa ako tapos sa mga visions ko. (I’m not yet done. My siblings have entered politics again and again. They have been mayors for 9 years and then they return. But I have only served one term as governor. I have unfinished visions.)
Jade says her fight with her family is a “clash of principles.”
Looking up from their shanties to the Ecleo castle, some residents call the structure a monument to inequality.
LARRY COYNO, DINAGATNON: Mayroon kang mataas na palasyo pero yung mga tao sa baba, eh, parang hulmigas lang yon eh…Very unfair. (Houses there are small. You have a palace above but the people below, they are like ants. It’s unfair.)
There’s an emerging clamor for change in Dinagat, with 73% of people living below the poverty level.
Still, the ruling Ecleos remain a formidable political force.
The 2013 elections in Dinagat will test a mother’s resilience, a daughter’s defiance, and the new province’s survival caught in between. Voltaire Tupaz, Rappler, Dinagat Islands
Story 4: PSEI HITS NEW RECORD AFTER CREDIT UPGRADE
The Philippine Stock Exchange Index hits a new record high Friday after credit rating firm Standard & Poors upgrades the Philippines’ rating to investment grade level.
For the first time, the PSEi breaches the 7,200 level by 9:33am, a few minutes after the stock market opened.
It reaches 7,230.4 — a new intraday record — as investors react to the newest vote of confidence in the Philippines.
The PSEi closes at 7,215.35, up 1.72%.
This is the 28th time the index has broken records this 2013.
Story 5: S&P UPGRADES PLDT’S CREDIT RATING
The Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company wins a credit rating upgrade from international credit rating firm Standard & Poor’s.
S&P upgrades PLDT’s foreign currency corporate credit rating and unsecured credit rating from BBB- to BBB.
This is one notch above investment grade.
This comes a day after S&P upgraded the Philippines’ rating to investment grade.
In a statement, S&P says, “The rating reflects the company’s strong position in the domestic market, diversified services, integrated network, and solid cash flow measures.”
It adds, the macroeconomic risk and competition — quote — “temper these strengths.”
PLDT chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan says the company welcomes the upgrade. He adds, “We are pleased to benefit from the improving economic conditions in the country that resulted in another investment grade rating for the Philippines.”
Story 6: PH REMAINS 3RD IN IMPUNITY INDEX
For the fourth straight year, the Philippines is number 3 in a global index for impunity.
On Thursday, the Committee to Protect Journalists releases its 2013 Impunity Index, which lists countries where journalists are killed regularly and whose murders remain unsolved.
The Philippines remains high on the Impunity Index because of the Maguindanao Massacre in 2009.
More than 50 people, including 32 journalists, were killed in the worst election-related violence in the country.
The CPJ report says Philippine police –quote– “have yet to make headway in the prosecution of dozens of suspects in [the] politically motivated massacre.”
The CPJ report also notes 3 witnesses in the case were murdered, with one dismembered and mutilated.
The Philippines has maintained a position in the Impunity Index since the CPJ began its analysis in 2008.
Story 7: CHINESE BOAT CAUSED BIGGER DAMAGE IN TUBBATAHA
The Tubbataha Management Office says the F/V Min Long Yu, the Chinese vessel that ran aground in Tubbataha Reef on April 8, destroyed 3,902 square meters of corals.
This is 66% larger than the damage caused by the USS Guardian, which damaged about 2,346 square meters of the reef when it ran aground in January.
Tubbataha park superintendent Angelique Songco says some of the massive corals damaged are estimated to be about 500 years old.
She says, “The damage the Chinese vessel caused to the reef is heartbreaking.”
Authorities charge 12 Chinese men caught in the vessel with poaching and possession of protected species.
They will also face administrative cases before the Tubbataha Protected Area Management Board.
Story 8: BOSTON BOMBERS PLANNED JULY 4 STRIKE
Boston bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev tells investigators he and his brother planned to commit suicide attacks during Fourth of July celebrations.
The Washington Post and the New York Times, citing two unnamed officials, say the brothers aborted plans to attack on the Fourth of July after they finished building their pressure-cooker bombs quicker than expected.
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is accused of carrying out the bombing with older brother Tamerlan Tsarnaev, who was gunned down in a police shootout.
Dzhokhar tells authorities he and his brother watched Internet sermons of Anwar al-Awlaki, a radical American cleric who was killed in a drone strike in 2011 after moving to Yemen.
But The Times reports, there is no evidence the brothers communicated with Awlaki.
Story 9: VITUG VLOGS: BEAUTY CONTESTS AND WOMEN’S INSECURITIES
Rappler’s editor at large Marites Vitug comments on the culture of beauty and women’s perceptions about their appearance.
Here’s her video blog.
This is a summer of sizzling beauties.
We were recently wowed by Bb. Pilipinas winners. This month, one will be chosen Ms. Philippines-Earth.
Women who join beauty contests look confident, parading on stage in daring swimsuits, showing well-toned abs. They are proud of their faces and bodies.
But women, in general, are the opposite. They appear to be insecure about how they look.
We learn this from the latest Dove “Real Beauty” commercial.
In the viral video, a forensic sketch artist, with his back to his subjects, draws women based on their own descriptions.
Then he draws a second round of sketches of the same women, this time, based on how someone else described them.
The result? The women look more attractive in the second sketch. Their features are brighter.
David Brooks of the New York Times says this highlights a phenomenon: women tend to undervalue their appearance and be self-critical.
This Dove campaign is fascinating.
It reminds us that how women look should not be a source of anxiety. After all, others see women’s faces in a better light.
This is Marites Vitug for VitugVlogs.
Story 10: THE wRap: YOUR WORLD IN ONE READ
At number 3, UN leader Ban Ki-moon discusses deadlocked efforts to end the Syria conflict, with signs that peace envoy Lakhdar Brahimi is set to quit.
The permanent Security Council members urge Brahimi to stay, but diplomats say he is determined to leave because of growing frustration with stalled international efforts to end the two-year-old conflict.
The Arab League decision to recognize the opposition Syrian National Coalition as Syria’s legitimate government was the final straw for the UN troubleshooter.
At number 4, The death toll in Bangladesh’s worst industrial disaster passes 500 on May 3 after 41 bodies were pulled from the wreckage of an eight-story building that collapsed on April 24.
Bangladesh’s garment firms re-open to complete delayed orders for their Western clients after an eight-day shutdown.
Millions of staff return to make clothes for retailers like Walmart and H&M, which came under pressure to review their contracts in the country.
Around 3,000 people were trapped when the building collapsed near the capital Dhaka on April 24.
And at number 9, Women attending the Asian Development Bank’s annual meeting in New Delhi are advised to avoid wearing short skirts because this may lead to sexual harassment.
In a website notice Thursday, ADB advises delegates from nearly 70 countries to dress modestly in the sexually conservative nation.
It later removed the advisory from its site, with a spokeswoman saying the agency wanted delegates to “dress sensibly in a businesslike fashion.”
ADB’s board of governors meet this weekend in the Indian capital to discuss the global economy.
Newscast production staff
|EXECUTIVE PRODUCER / WRITER||Lilibeth Frondoso|
|ASSOCIATE PRODUCER / PUBLISHER||Rodneil Quiteles|
|HEAD WRITER / PROMPTER||Katerina Francisco|
|MASTER EDITOR / PLAYBACK||Vicente Roxas|
|TECHNICAL DIRECTOR / CAMERAMAN||Charlie Salazar|
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