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Volume 17 - No. 9 • 3 Sections – 20 Pages

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Filipinos trust US the most, neutral on China, says poll by AJPRESS MOST Filipinos hold “much trust” in the United States and maintain a neutral stance on China, a recent Social Weather Station (SWS) survey showed. Poll results released Wednesday, February 28, revealed that Filipinos have the highest trust in U.S. among 14 countries included in the survey. U.S. got a “very good” net trust rating of +68 (75 percent much trust, 7 percent little trust). SWS said the public trust survey results on


the U.S. have been positive since the country was first included in the polls in December 1994. Apart from the U.S., Canada and Japan also recorded “very good” trust ratings at +55 (65 percent much trust, 10 percent little trust) and +54 (65 percent much trust, 11 percent little trust) respectively. Six other countries, meanwhile, got “moderate” trust ratings among Filipinos: Singapore at +29 (47 percent much trust, 17 percent little trust), Malaysia at +20 (40 percent much trust, 20 percent little trust), and Thailand at +19 (39 percent much trust, 19 percent little trust).



Supreme Court rejects review of federal judge’s order on DACA Ruling allows current DACA recipients to renew applications until further notice ADVOCATES for undocumented youth have just scored themselves another win this week in the months-long battle with the federal government. In a further breakthrough in favor of recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), the United States Supreme Court on Monday, February 26 said it wouldn’t be hearing the Trump administration challenge to a federal judge’s ruling that allowed DACA to keep running. That means that the March 5 deadline




Manila asserted its sovereign rights over Philippine Rise (formerly Benham Rise) on June 12, 2017 by planting the national flag there as the nation marked the 119th anniversary of its independence. Divers from the Philippine Navy’s newest ship, the BRP Davao del Sur, set the flag on a concrete base 57 meters below the water surface. photo


PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday, February 28, warned countries of risking a war with the Philippines should they conduct unwarranted fishing and exploration activities in the Philippine Rise, also referred to as Benham Rise. In a speech before soldiers in Marawi City, Duterte asserted anew the Philippines’ exclusive rights to explore and exploit resources in the resource-rich waters. “Yung Philippine Rise, atin talaga ‘yan (The Philippine Rise is ours),” the president stressed.


TRUE to his word, Donnie “Ahas” Nietes showed how the snake strikes. And strike he did! On Saturday, February 24 at the cavernous Forum in Inglewood, California, Nietes displayed his brilliant technical skills and artistry in boxing that has made him the longest and continuous boxing world champion from the Philippines.

Nietes defended his IBF Flyweight title against Argentina’s Juan Carlos Reveco, who is no pushover. He is a former world champion with a highly respectable record. The smooth and extremely technical manner Nietes disposed of him is a glaring tribute to the world-class talent of the native of Murcia, Negros Occidental.




THAT’S THE SPIRIT. As the crowd whoops it up in arguably the least attended celebration of the 1986 bloodless revolt on Sunday, February 25 at the People Power Monument, former President Fidel V. Ramos bends his knees before the cameras but skips the reenactment of his signature EDSA victory leap. photo by Nino Jesus Orbeta

PH tells UN Human Rights Council: Drug war aims to save lives by DANA

by DR.

FVR: Learn the lessons of EDSA

Trump admires PH drug policy, says report


BAHAY PAG-ASA. President Rodrigo Duterte gets a hug from a resident of Brgy. Maria Cristina in Balo-i, Lanao del Norte after receiving a mobile phone from him. The president interacted with the locals on the sidelines of his attendance to the groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of Christine Villas on Wednesday, February 28. Malacañang photo by Karl Norman

Duterte warns: Foreign activity Nietes validates his place in PH Rise could trigger war amongst great flyweights


UNITED States President Donald Trump often muses about killing drug dealers as a way to address the narcotics problem in the country, American news website Axios reported Sunday, February 25. Among Trump’s inspirations is apparently the current situation in the Philippines, where the government is waging a bloody war that has led to the deaths of thousands of suspected drug personalities. Unnamed sources, who supposedly have spoken to Trump about the subject, revealed that the U.S. leader admires the drug policies of countries like the Philippines and China.

MA R C H 2 - 8 , 2 0 1 8

(UNHRC) on Tuesday, February 27 as he defended the antiPHILIPPINE President Rodri- illegal drugs campaign, which go Duterte’s drug war is meant was heavily criticized by human rights groups due to the mountto “save lives.” This is what the Philippines’ ing death toll of suspected drug top diplomat told the United personalities. Nations Human Rights Council u PAGE A4


FORMER President Fidel Ramos has urged Filipinos to practice unity, solidarity and teamwork amid trying times. On the 32nd anniversary of EDSA People Power Sunday, February 25, Ramos reminded the crowd that the 1986 revolution was just the “beginning of change,” not the endpoint for the lives of Filipinos. “We are just beginning. The outcome, which is a better future for all Filipinos, must be done by all succeeding presidential administrations,” the former president told the crowd. Amid the supposed crackdown on dissenters, Ramos urged the administration to “embrace the opposition” and learn the lessons of EDSA, the four-day uprising that led to the peaceful ouster of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos. “Don’t forget what we learned at EDSA


In his HBO boxing debut on Saturday, February 24 at Superfly 2 in Los Angeles, reigning IBF Flyweight World Champion Donnie “Ahas” Nietes pulled off a victory against Argentine challenger Juan Carlos Reveco in seven rounds. Photo by Jhay Otamias


march 2-8, 2018 • NOrcaL aSIaN JOUrNaL

FVR: Learn the lessons... PAGE A1 t and what is still going on is the unity of the Filipinos for a better future,” he added. Ramos urged Filipinos to work as one community, not as Dabawenyos, Tagalogs or other localities. National Historical Commission of the Philippines chairman Rene Escalante echoed Ramos’ statements, adding that President Duterte doesn’t want fights with any sector, opposition or pro-administration. Ramos called out Duterte on his decision to skip the EDSA rites, and added that the president should have attended the commemoration of one of the most important events in the country’s history. Escalante said the president had work to do and will commemorate the EDSA event in Davao City. Duterte sent his message urging Filipinos to help in strengthening institutions that safeguard their freedom.

“May this occasion foster the unity and solidarity as we pursue our hopes and aspirations for our nation,” Duterte said. Duterte said Filipinos, through the historic uprising in 1986, showed the world how “a people’s courage and resolve can alter the course of our nation’s history.” Vice President Leni Robredo, for her part, urged Filipinos to “fight” those who disregard their dignity. “Just like the homily of (Caceres) Archbishop (Rolando) Tirona, he reminds us to fight those who disregard the dignity of every Filipino,” Robredo said during the mass for the EDSA anniversary at the St. Jude Thaddeus Parish Church in Naga City. The vice president also stressed that real power lies not in the hands of the government but in every Filipino. She called on Filipinos to relive the spirit of the bloodless revolt every day to prevent the dark past from being repeated. “The reason why the People • (650) 689-5160

From the Front Page Power Revolution happened was because of the extreme abuses and disrespect of Filipinos’ rights 32 years ago, we should not allow that to happen again,” Robredo said. “Whenever there are instances of abuse, instances of disrespect to human rights, instances of killings, instances where people’s dignity is disregarded, we should fight back,” she said. Supreme Court (SC) Associate Justice Marvic Leonen posted his message on Twitter regarding the qualities of a good leader of the nation. “A leader knows that there is a difference between authority and respect. The former is on a piece of paper with all the trappings of tradition and power. Authority based on entitlement does not last forever. Respect is painstakingly earned,” Leonen said. Leonen said a good leader must use his authority while respecting constituents. “They (constituents) follow him/her not because he/she has authority but because he/she inspires them to be the best in


SAP BICAM ON ANTI-HAZING ACT OF 2018. Senator Panfilo Lacson (2nd from left), chair of the Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs, presides over the Bicameral Conference Committee on the disagreeing provisions of Senate Bill 1662 and House Bill 6573, or the Anti-Hazing Act of 2018 on Wednesday, February 28. Also in photo are (from left), Senator Migz Zubiri, Gringo Honasan, and Sherwin Gatchalian.

Filipinos trust US the most... PAGE A1 t Completing the list were Indonesia at +18 (38 percent much trust, 20 percent little trust), Brunei at +16 (37 percent much trust, 21 percent little trust), and Vietnam at +13 (34 percent much trust, 21 percent little trust). As for China, the SWS survey showed that its trust ratings among Filipinos went up by a grade from “poor” to “neutral.”

Its -13 net trust rating in the previous September 2017 poll went up to +7 (38 percent much trust, 31 percent little trust). Other countries that had “neutral” trust ratings include Myanmar at +8 (31 percent much trust, 24 percent little trust), Cambodia at +7 (31 percent much trust, 24 percent little trust), and Laos at +3 (27 percent much trust, 24 percent little trust).

Only North Korea received a “poor” net trust rating among Filipinos at -19 (24 percent much trust, 43 percent little trust). The survey was conducted from December 8-16, 2017 using face-to-face interviews of 1,200 adults nationwide, with sampling error margins of ±3% for national percentages, and ±6% each for Metro Manila, Balance Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. n

Duterte warns: Foreign activity... PAGE A1 t He noted that any foreign entities who wanted to conduct scientific research in the area should first secure permission from the Philippine government, backed by a recommendation from the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). “Sinabi ko talaga, ‘walang mage-experiments na diyan hangga’t wala silang permiso galing sa akin (said that nobody would experiment there without my permission) but the Armed Forces will have to recommend it,” the president said. “Otherwise, no. I will not allow fishing. Magka-giyera tayo (There will be war),” he warned, adding that the Philippine government has already deployed

a Marine battalion to guard the waters. In a separate statement, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) announced that the government will oppose China’s naming of five undersea features in the Philippine Rise. “The Philippine government is planning to contest the Chinanamed features in the Philippine Rise,” Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Ernesto Abella told reporters in a briefing. Last February 13, Maritime law expert Jay Batongbacal revealed that China successfully named five undersea features in the Philippines Rise last year after getting approval from the International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) approved the names in 2017.

Malacañang, however, declared that it will not recognize the Chinese names. During a Senate hearing on Monday, February 26, National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon reported that China illegally surveyed the Philippine Rise in 2004, which led to the naming of the undersea features. “We have raised the issue of unauthorized researches conducted by the Institute of Oceanology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences during our bilateral consultation mechanism in Manila last February 13,” Abella added. According to him, said both countries “agreed that all marine science research henceforth must have the consent of the Philippines.” n

Photos by Jhay Otamias

Nietes validates his place amongst...


This is what purists in the sweet science meant when they said “this is boxing at it’s best.” The fight may have been devoid of blood and gore, but it was a display of artistry in motion — from the offense to the defense. Nietes’ victory also sent a gigantic message to everyone on the 112-lb. division and perhaps even those at 115 lbs. It was as though Nietes said, “Watch out fellows, the snake is on the prowl and he is hunting you guys down.” Admittedly, the fight was not that easy. Reveco had his moments, albeit far and in between. It was his very aggressive style

that played perfectly to the awesome counter-punching prowess of Nietes. Every time the Argentine used his left hand, Nietes would hit like the deadly cobra, throwing a counter that eventually spelled doom for Reveco. The Filipino boxing icon almost always had a reply for everything fired by Reveco and piled up points forcing his opponent to change tactics to catch up to no avail. In the 6th round, Nietes landed a cool shot that buckled the legs of Reveco at the corner and it felt that at that time, the time was up for the Argetinian. The doctors went up the ring to evaluate his

condition but they ultimately decided that he can continue. Seeing this, the Villamor brothers who train Nietes instructed him to pour it on and finish the job. When the 7th round bell rang, Nietes followed instructions and went for the kill, much like a snake that had his foe against a rock. Nietes did not waste time and landed several hard shots that finally dropped Reveco. Reveco got up but didn’t have the strength to even follow the referee’s instruction for him to show that he is okay. Seeing that, Reveco’s corner signaled that he had enough and referee waived off the fight. n

(650) 689-5160 •

Dateline USa



US classifies ISISUS carrier back in South China Sea Philippines, Maute group as terror organizations overnight stay aboard the Vinson, Hawkins explained the South China Sea is a maritime crossroads THE U.S. Carrier Strike Group where a lot of maritime activities has been sailing through contest- are expected. He said 90 percent of world ed waters in the South China Sea ISIS-affiliated groups and lead- since Friday, February 23, and is commerce travels in the disputed ers outside its fallen caliphate in now in the Spratlys Archipelago. waters and in order for maritime Iraq and Syria.” U.S. naval officials said there’s traffic to remain open, “somebody “Today’s actions are a critical nothing unusual about the Strike must be around.” step in degrading ISIS’ global Group’s presence in the region. He added the role is now benetwork and denying its affiliThe USS Carl Vinson is the lead ing played by the Strike Group in ates the resources they need to ship of the Carrier Strike Group partnership with regional allies. plan and carry out terrorist at- 21. This is in line with the U.S. tacks,” he said. “It is routine operations. The Navy’s mission primarily to deThe country’s Department of U.S. Navy is a global navy. Our fend U.S. interests, deter conflict, Foreign Affairs, moreover, wel- presence matters in order to en- respond to crisis, defeat aggrescomed the move of the U.S. state sure that ocean remains open,” sion, protect maritime commons, department, noting that counter- spokesman Lt. Comdr. Tim strengthen partnerships and coning terrorism continues to be a Hawkins said in a press briefing duct humanitarian assistance and priority of the administration. aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft disaster response, Hawkins said. “Terrorism is a global and re- carrier. During the tour, a navy official gional challenge and cooperaPlaying host to journalists from announced that the strike group tion with key allies is critical in Singapore, U.S., Malaysia, Indo- is now “within Spratlys,” but deaverting terrorist operations,” nesia and the Philippines for an clined to elaborate. n DFA Undersecretary Ernesto Abella said in a press briefing on Wednesday, February 28. The U.S. Treasury Department also added ISIS-Philippines and PAGE A2 t name the leader he was pertainMaute group to its sanction list what they do,” he said. ing to. for global terrorism. “The great leader not only Leonen strongly criticized the The treasury department ear- understands the value of earned martial law extension in Mindlier sanctioned Abdulpatta Es- respect, the wisdom of imperanao in his strongly worded discalon Abubakar for providing manence and the inevitability of senting opinion to the SC ruling support for ISIS and advancing sacrifice. That is, that there is the last month. violent extremism in Southeast right time to let go, step down He said the ruling allowing Asia. and allow others to lead,” Le- President Duterte’s re-extension The capital of Lanao del Sur onen pointed out. of martial law in Mindanao “enwas ravaged by clashes between Leonen added that a great ables the rise of an emboldened government forces and Islamic leader should know that occupyauthoritarian.” State-linked terrorists who at- ing power is not permanent. “Contrary to the text and spirit tacked the predominantly Mus“It is the mark of a great leader of the Constitution, the decision lim city in May 2017. who knows that there will be oth- in this case provides the environPresident Rodrigo Duterte de- ers greater than him or her,” he ment that enables the rise of an clared the liberation of Marawi added.?The SC justice did not emboldened authoritarian. This from terrorists after Marawi siege leaders Isnilon Hapilon and Omar Maute were killed in a military operation. n by Jaime Laude

by Gaea



THE United States State Department has designated the ISIS-Philippines and the Maute group along with other jihadist organizations and individuals as terrorist entities. The U.S. state department branded ISIS-Philippines, ISISWest Africa and ISIS-Bangladesh as “specially designated global terrorists” and as “foreign terrorist organizations.” As a result of these designations, Americans are prohibited from engaging in transactions with these groups. “The group’s property and interests in property subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked. In addition, it is a crime to knowingly provide, or attempt or conspire to provide, material support or resources to the organizations,” the U.S. state department said. Maute group, along with ISISaffiliated groups such as ISIS-Somalia, Jund al-Khilafah-Tunisia, ISIS-Egypt and ISIS-affiliated leaders Mahad Moalim and Abu Musab al-Barwani, has been also classified as “specially designated global terrorists.” The department noted that Maute group, which is responsible for the five-month long siege in Marawi City, has declared its allegiance to ISIS in 2014 and is “an integral part of the ISIS-Philippines.” Coordinator for Counterterrorism Nathan Sales stressed that “these designations target key

FVR: Learn the lessons...

Supreme Court rejects review... PAGE A1 t that the administration put into place no longer applies. Moreover, the more than 700,000 undocumented youth who are enrolled in DACA may still apply to renew their status. The Supreme Court’s ruling was largely expected because the justices rarely hear appeals that ask to bypass lower court rulings. The lower court’s ruling that remains in effect is that of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit in San Francisco which on Jan. 9 ordered the federal government to continue running DACA, as previously reported by the Asian Journal. As extensively reported on by the Asian Journal, DACA was put into effect by former President Barack Obama in 2012 by way of executive order. Since then, hundreds of thousands of undocumented youth who were brought to the U.S. illegally as young children have been granted work authorization, reprieve from deportation and other benefits. The program gives eligible undocumented youth a twoyear permit with the option to renew after it expires. Economy experts have expressed that DACA has allowed undocumented youth who were previously prohibited from working to contribute to the American economy. The left-leaning Center for American Progress (CAP) conducted a study in 2017 that analyzed the educational and professional experiences of more than 3,000 DACA recipients. The study found that 91 percent of those under DACA are employed and 69 percent found higher paying jobs that better fit their career aspirations. Notably, if the benefits of DACA remain in place (whether that be through DACA or a permanent solution), they are projected to contribute $460.3 billion to the U.S. gross domestic product over the next ten years.

Since President Donald Trump announced he was terminating DACA in September 2017, advocates for undocumented youth — commonly referred to as DREAMers — have been scrambling finding a solution for them. “The Supreme Court’s action shows that rescinding DACA was not only legally questionable but also unjust and cruel. But only Congress can provide the permanent solution our [DREAMers] need and deserve,” House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said on Twitter on Monday, February 26. Congress has tried and failed to come up with a solution for several months, but Monday’s ruling also gives it more time to come up with a legislative compromise for DREAMers. After the Supreme Court’s decision on Monday, the White House said, “The DACA program — which provides work permits and myriad government benefits to illegal immigrants en masse — is clearly unlawful. The district judge’s decision to unilaterally re-impose a program that Congress had explicitly and repeatedly rejected is a usurpation of legislative authority... We look forward to having this case expeditiously heard by the appeals court and, if necessary, the Supreme Court, where we fully expect to prevail.” Though the White House has maintained that the original passage of DACA by Obama in 2012 was illegal, federal judges have deemed those claims baseless. On Tuesday, February 13, Judge Nicholas G. Garaufis of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York was the second judge to block the administration’s termination of DACA. Garaufis called the claim that DACA was illegally passed a “plainly incorrect factual premise” and called the ending of DACA “arbitrary and capricious.” (Klarize Medenilla/AJPress)

Trump admires PH drug policy... PAGE A1 t “He (Trump) often jokes about killing drug dealers. He’ll say, ‘You know the Chinese and Filipinos don’t have drug problem. They just kill them,’” a senior administration official told Axios. Trump also reportedly wants similar laws that would execute all drug dealers in the U.S., even commending Singapore’s mandatory death penalty for drug traffickers. “He (Trump) says, ‘When I ask the prime minister of Singapore do they have a drug problem [the prime minister replies,] ‘No. Death penalty,’” a source told Axios. During Trump’s visit to Manila in November last year, Malacañang said the U.S. president appeared “sympathetic” when Philippine President Rodrigo talked about the drug problem in the Philippines. Trump had earlier congrat-

ulated Duterte for the latter administration’s “unbelievable job” in addressing the drug menace. “Many countries have the problem, we have a problem, but what a great job you are doing and I just wanted to call and tell you that,” Trump told Duterte. Human rights groups have claimed that over 12,000 lives have been lost in Duterte’s drug war and have condemned the Philippine government for allegedly giving police and vigilantes a “license to kill” drug suspects nationwide. But the Philippine government disputed the figure, clarifying that only around 4,000 drug personalities were killed for violently resisting arrest during police operations. The Duterte administration also repeatedly denied that it promotes sanctioned killings. (AJPress)

An SA-330 Puma helicopter assigned to the Military Sealift Command Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo and ammunition ship USNS Cesar Chavez (T-AKE 14) drops off cargo during a vertical replenishment-at-sea on the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70). The Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group is operating in the western Pacific as part of a scheduled deployment. U.S. Navy photo by Daniel P. Jackson Norgart

is far from the oath to the Constitution that I have taken. I, therefore, dissent,” Leonen said. He believed that the ruling hews to “the same dangerous path” as when the Supreme Court, in the 1970s, upheld martial law under Marcos. “Regardless of the motives of the justices then, it was a Court that was complicit to the suffering or our people. It was a Court that degenerated into a willing pawn diminished by its fear of the impatience of a dictator. The majority’s decision in this case aligns us towards the same dangerous path,” he said. Even before the EDSA program started, tensions rose briefly as a

religious group refused to move out of the People Power Monument before 6 a.m. Police were forced to move their tents out of the way and the EDSA rites continued as scheduled. A total of 1,500 policemen were deployed to secure the EDSA rites program. After the reenactment of the “salubungan,” Ramos, Army Capt. Michael Asistores and PO3 Christopher Lalan were given the EDSA People Power Commission Award. The Spirit of EDSA Foundation and Good Citizenship Award was also given to Melvin Gaa. (With Helen Flores, Edu Punay) n


Dateline USa

march 2-8, 2018 • NOrcaL aSIaN JOUrNaL • (650) 689-5160

Airline accidents down in 2017 – IATA

by Reicelene Joy ignacio

globally and in most regions. And we are determined to make this ABOUT 4.1-billion travelers very safe industry even safer,” flew safely on 41.8 million flights IATA Director General and Chief in 2017, putting the global all ac- Executive Officer Alexandre de cident rate per one million flights Juniac said in a statement. “In 2017 there were incidents at 1.08, a significant improvement from the 1.68 figure in and accidents that we learned 2016, according to the Interna- from through the investigation tional Air Transport Association. process, just as we will learn “2017 was a very good year for from the recent tragedies in aviation safety. We saw improve- Russia and Iran. Complementments in nearly all key metrics, ing that knowledge are insights

we can gain from the millions of flights that operate safety. Data from these operations are powering the development of predictive analytics that will eventually enable us to eliminate the conditions that can lead to accidents,” De Juniac said. The IATA reported that none of its member airlines experienced fatal accidents or hull losses in 2017 with jet or turboprop equipment. n

At some California hospitals, fewer than half of workers get the flu shot by Jocelyn

WieneR Kaiser Health News

STRAWBERRY HARVEST. Tourists enjoy harvesting strawberries at the Strawberry Farm in La Trinidad, Benguet. The peak season for strawberries in the area runs from November to May. Each kilo of freshly picked strawberries costs PHP450. PNA photo by Joey Razon

South China Sea conflict among biggest threats to world economy — report by audRey


AN outbreak of hostilities in the West Philippine Sea and a military confrontation over North Korea’s nuclear and missile program are two of the biggest threats to the global economy, according to a new report. According to the The Economist Intelligence Unit, an outbreak of hostilities in the West Philippine Sea, or South China Sea, is third in terms of probability and impact on the world’s economy. The top two risks, according to the EIU report, are a prolonged fall in major stock markets that could destabilize the global economy and a trade war that would be provoked by American protectionism. A major cyber-attack crippling corporate and government activities is fourth on the list of threats to the global economy, EIU said. “Other key risks identified include a disorderly and prolonged Chinese slowdown, a major military confrontation on the Korean peninsula, and outright conflict in the Middle East between Iran and Saudi Arabia,” EIU said.

The Philippines, China, Vietnam, Taiwan, Malaysia and Brunei claim either almost all or a part of the disputed waters through which $5 trillion worth of trade passes yearly. In 2016, a United Nationsbacked tribunal invalidated China’s expansive claims to the region, which Beijing said were based on its so-called historical rights. China has refused to acknowledge the ruling and did not participate in the arbitration case initiated by the Philippines in 2013. Despite this, China has transformed several features in the West Philippine Sea into islands capable of hosting naval and air bases. Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana recently admitted before the Senate that Chinese planes from these man-made islands could reach and bomb the Philippine mainland in 15 minutes. North Korea meanwhile has continued to develop its missile and nuclear program despite blistering international sanctions and criticism. It has recently showed capability of launching a missile capable of reaching mainland United States, a big leap in its

effort to develop nuclear bombtipped weapons that could target many American cities. Although the world economy has experienced periods of high risk before, what is unique during this period is the risks associated with the US questioning its role in the world while China is becoming more assertive, EIU said. “Global risk is not just about the two biggest economies; risks also transcend boundaries on the political, military and financial spheres,” EIU said. There has never been a period of such robust economic growth, low inflation and high employment that has been coupled with a sense of unease over global conditions, according to Philip Walker, risk practice director for the EIU. He said that policymakers, companies and populations are facing a wide range of major threats that could upset the traditional global order in the coming years. “It is important to assess and prepare for a likely tumultuous global environment in order not just to mitigate damage, but also take advantage of opportunities that will undoubtedly arise along the way,” he said. n

PH tells UN Human Rights Council... PAGE A1 t During the High Level Segment of the 37th Session of the UNHRC in Geneva, Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano underscored that the Philippine government launched the drug war “to save lives, to preserve families, to protect communities and stop the country from sliding into a narco state.” “As a sovereign nation, we deserve respect and even support for our right to life and liberty, our sovereign right to self-determination, to make our people safe and secure from all threats, terrorism, corruption and criminality,” Cayetano added. The top diplomat also urged the 47-member body to “engage and act and not merely name and shame.” While re-affirming the government’s readiness and cooperation in submitting itself to investigations, Cayetano called on the UNHRC to not “weaponize” and “politicize” the human rights situation in the Philippines. “When does the quest for human rights become a human wrong? It is when human rights is politicized and weaponized,” Cayetano said. Earlier, Icelandic Foreign Af-

Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano speaks before the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) on Tuesday, February 27. DFA photo

fairs Minister Gudlaugur Thór Thórdarson urged the Philippine government to “accept without preconditions or limitations” a visit from UN Special Rapporteur Callamard. He also asked the Philippine government to “cooperate with the Office of the High Commissioner to receive a mission by independent experts to conduct an assessment of the situation in the country without delay.” But Cayetano, in response, asked the UN to not send Callamard or any other official who has “already prejudged” the

Duterte administration. “When a UN Special Rapporteur cries out, like the Queen in Alice in Wonderland, ‘First the judgment, then the trial,’ when she culls evidence only for what might support her prejudgment, he or she loses the moral high ground and is stripped of any credibility,” Cayetano stressed. The top diplomat went on to say, “There are 7.5 billion people in the world; send anyone except one who has already prejudged us, and who, by any measure, cannot be considered independent and, more so, objective.” n

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HOW well are doctors, nurses and other workers at your local hospital vaccinated against the flu? That depends on the hospital. According to data from the California Department of Public Health, flu vaccination rates among health care staffers at the state’s acute care hospitals range from a low of 37 percent to 100 percent. Overall, flu vaccination rates among hospital workers climbed significantly in the past several years — from an average of 63 percent during the 2010-11 influenza season to 83 percent during the 2016-17 season, according to the California Department of Public Health. Vaccination rates for the current season won’t be determined until later this year. But that general increase masks some big variations. Monrovia Memorial Hospital in Los Angeles, Los Robles Hospital and Medical Center, East Campus and Thousand Oaks Surgical Center in Ventura each reported that fewer than 40 percent of their health care workers received the flu vaccine last year. Representatives from those hospitals did not return repeated calls for comment. On the other end of the spectrum, Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego reported that every single person working there got the vaccine. California’s flu vaccination policies for hospital workers, and those of many other states, are far from uniform or ironclad. In various states, health care workers have legally challenged hospital requirements for vaccination on religious and secular grounds. And some unions in California and elsewhere oppose a legal mandate, partly for civil rights reasons. Public health officials themselves have different takes on the legal requirements for hospital workers. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lists California and Massachusetts among the handful of states where the flu vaccination is mandated for health care workers. But the states’ laws allow health care workers to opt out by signing a form declining the vaccine. For that reason, officials from those two states said they do not actually consider the vaccine mandatory. Colorado law requires hospital health care workers to provide proof of immunization or a doctor’s note providing for a medical exemption, and requires that non-immunized workers wear masks. Hospitals that achieve a 90 percent or higher flu vaccination rate are exempt from these rules, however. In California, state law requires that hospitals offer the vaccine free of charge. Many hospitals offer vaccines to personnel in the cafeteria, and during day and night shifts. “The key to getting more people vaccinated is to make it more easily accessible for people,” said Lynn Janssen, chief of the California Department of

Infographic by Kaiser Health News

Public Health’s associated infections branch. She also said many California counties and hospitals have required health care workers to either get the flu vaccine or wear a mask, which can help prevent spreading illness to others. Partly as a result, nearly a third of the state’s hospitals now have flu vaccination rates above 90 percent. Vaccination rates vary significantly among different categories of hospital workers, however. Hospital employees had an average vaccination rate of 87 percent statewide in 2016-17, while licensed independent practitioners — including some physicians, advance practice nurses and physician assistants who do not receive paychecks from the hospital — had a rate of just 67 percent. The CDC recommends that health workers get one dose of influenza vaccine annually, and cites data showing the vaccine in recent years has been to up 60 percent effective — though it was far less so this year. Dr. Bill Schaffner, an infectious diseases professor at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, Tenn., says there are three principal reasons to get vaccinated: to prevent workers from infecting patients, to keep them healthy in order to care for patients and to spare them a bout with the flu. A 2017 Canadian study, however, suggests that the benefits of health care worker vaccinations have been overstated. In any case, just because experts say health care personnel should get the vaccine doesn’t mean they will choose to do so. “In the studies, and also in our experience, it turns out — to everyone’s great surprise — that health care workers are human beings,” Schaffner said. “Some are too busy, some don’t think the flu vaccine is worth it, some don’t like shots. Some are not convinced they can’t get flu from the flu vaccine.” (Experts say they can’t.) Because of this, Schaffner said, it’s up to hospital leadership to push staffers to get vaccinated. At Vanderbilt University Medical Center, vaccination

rates increased from 70 percent to 90 percent once leaders there effectively made the flu vaccine “mandatory,” he said, requiring noncompliant hospital personnel to present vaccine exemption requests to a hospital committee. Health officials also encourage patients to ask whether their caregivers are vaccinated. Jan Emerson-Shea, spokeswoman for the California Hospital Association, said her organization would like the flu vaccine to be mandatory for all health care personnel. Independent physicians have proven an especially challenging group to motivate, she said, since hospitals hold little sway over them. “I, for the life of me, can’t imagine why a physician wouldn’t want to be vaccinated,” she said. “But they make that choice.” Yet the California Nurses Association strongly opposes making flu vaccines mandatory, said Gerard Brogan, a registered nurse and spokesman for the union. He said the union does recommend that providers get the vaccine, but it objects to making vaccination a condition of employment. He said some employees have religious issues or safety concerns about the vaccines and “we think that should be respected as a civil rights issue,” he said. He also called rules requiring unvaccinated providers to wear a face mask “punitive.” “It’s almost like the scarlet letter to shame you,” he said. He said the masks can frighten patients — a contention made by a New York union as well. In any case, he said, wearing the masks is not especially effective in stopping the spread of flu (although some researchers say otherwise). Instead, he said, employees should be encouraged to wash hands and to stay home when they are sick. Too often, he said, nurses are asked to come in to work when they are ill. He said he was not able to find any nurses willing to discuss their decision not to get the flu shot. n This story was produced by Kaiser Health News, an editorially in- dependent program of the Kaiser Family Foundation.

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Chief Justice Sereno to go on leave by DANA


pattern of lies.” “Kasinungalingan iyong sinasabing wellness leave (Wellness CHIEF Justice Ma. Lourdes leave is a lie),” said Umali. “It is Sereno is expected to take a leave indefinite leave and I hate to say of absence from March 1 to 15. it, this was because the en banc According to Sereno’s spokesforced her into it. So in other person, lawyer Jojo Lacanilao, words, majority, if not at all, of the chief justice will take a the en banc forced her to go on “wellness leave” to prepare for a leave,” he added. her impending impeachment triIn a statement, Malacañang al before the Senate, which was noted that Sereno’s decision to initially scheduled from March take a leave was a “personal mat12 to 23. ter.” In an interview at the sidelines Malacañang then expressed of the House justice committee’s hope that the top magistrate impeachment hearing against the Chief Justice Ma. Lourdes Sereno would use her break for reflecchief justice, Lacanilao clarified photo tion. that Sereno was just taking her so that she can prepare for her “As the Chief Justice takes wellness leave earlier than the possible impeachment trial in her wellness leave, we hope she original schedule. the Senate,” Lacanilao told re- would take this as an opportunity Lacanilao’s remark contrasts porters. to reflect on her time and legacy earlier local reports that the SuOriental Mindoro 2nd District at the Supreme Court and to conpreme Court (SC) en banc forced Representative Reynaldo Umali, sider what would be best for the Sereno to take an indefinite leave however, belied Lacanilao’s re- institution which she heads as beginning Thursday, March 1. mark, saying that the chief jus- top magistrate,” Palace spokesSome justices also reportedly tice was indeed forced by her person Harry Roque said. called for her resignation due to colleagues in the SC top take an Roque also expressed confiloss of confidence. indefinite leave. dence that “there would be no “She has been long schedUmali, who is also the chair- interruption on the day-to-day uled to take a wellness leave in man of the House committee on operations of the High Court and March [12 to 23], but she made justice, claimed that the “well- services would continue unhama decision to have it a few weeks ness leave” is just a part of Sere- pered” even if Sereno goes on earlier, starting March [1 to 15], no’s camp’s alleged “continuing leave. ■

Con-Com votes for presidentialfederal government structure MANILA – The Consultative Committee, formed by President Rodrigo Duterte to review the 1987 Constitution, on Tuesday, February 27, voted for a presidential-federal system of government. The members were provided with the following options: presi-

dential-federal, parliamentary or hybrid of presidential-parliamentary / semi-presidential-parliamentary. Eleven members voted to adopt the presidential-federal structure while seven voted for the hybrid for of government.

There were initially nine votes for the presidential-federal system since two members, lawyers Reuben Canoy and Victor Dela Serna, were not present during the session. The members then decided to conduct a run-off which resulted in 11-7 votes in favor of the presidential-federal form of government. Puno, who chairs the Con-Com, said he finds the hybrid form of government risky. “Undeniable that this hybrid option will be an experiment, a leap to the unknown and I’d like to believe that in designing the structure of our executive power, we cannot afford a system where we see too many moving parts of the puzzle which we have yet to capture,” Puno was quoted during the deliberation. The voting session lasted for about eight hours. The committee would hold another session on Puno, who chairs the Con-Com, said he finds the hybrid form of government risky. PAGE A7 photo

EXPANSIVE MATERNITY LEAVE PUSHED. Senator Risa Hontiveros is joined by representatives of health professional associations in expressing support for the proposed Expanded Maternity Leave Law on Monday, February 26, 2018. Hontiveros said that the measure, which is still pending in Congress, would expand the maternity leave for women up to 120 days, and would benefit mothers, newly-born children, and workplaces alike. Senate photo by Joseph Vidal

DOJ forms panel to probe Aquino, others over Dengvaxia mess by DANA


THE Department of Justice (DOJ) has created a new panel that will handle the complaint filed against former President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III, his two former executives, and other officials in connection with the controversial Dengvaxia vaccine. Through Office Order Number 439, the DOJ formed a four-panel person that will conduct a preliminary investigation on the criminal complaint filed by Vanguard of the Philippines, Inc. (VCPI) and Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC). Acting Prosecutor General Jorge Catalan Jr. has designated Senior Assistant State Prosecutor Rossane Balauag as head of the panel. Other members of the panel include Senior Assistant State Prosecutor Hazel Decena Valdez and Asst. State Prosecutors Consuelo Corazon Pazziuagan and Gino Paolo Santiago. The group of prosecutors is tasked to determine if there is sufficient evidence to indict Aquino and other respondents for multiple homicide and physical injuries, malversation of public funds, and violations of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, and the Government Procurement Reform Act. Aside from Aquino, other respondents are former Budget Secretary Florencio Abad, former Health Secretary Janet Garin and

other former and incumbent Department of Health (DOH) officials. Also among the respondents include senior executives of French pharmaceutical firm Sanofi Pasteur and of and Zuellig Pharma. Sanofi is the developer and manufacturer of Dengvaxia, while Zuellig Pharma supplied the vaccine to DOH. Complainants claimed that Aquino and other officials “anomalously and illegally funded and procured the Dengvaxia vaccine and ill-advisedly, thoughtlessly, and imprudently” implemented the dengue immunization program “by unduly influencing or exerting undue pressure on any member of the BAC (bids and awards committee) or any officer or employee of the procuring entity to take a particular action which favors or tends to favor a particular bidder.” More than 830,000 Filipino children were administered Dengvaxia since the government implemented the dengue immunization program in April 2016. The program was suspended last December following an announcement made by Sanofi that the vaccine poses health risk when administered on a person who has not been previously infected with the virus. VACC filed the complaint amid reported deaths and serious illnesses of children administered with the anti-dengue Dengvaxia

vaccine. But according to the current head of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Sanofi Pasteur already knew the risks of the vaccine as early as 2015. During the resumption of House hearings into the dengue immunization program on Monday, February 26, FDA Director General Nela Charade Puno claimed Sanofi already knew about the vaccine’s risks when it applied for a Certificate of Product Registration (CPR) in Singapore last year. “We visited some of the documents of Singapore. If you will check under publication, they approved Dengvaxia CPR September 2016. But with their publication they already announced that it is not to be used for patients who had not had dengue,” Puno told lawmakers. She continued, “Ibig sabihin, alam na nila December 22, 2015, at dapat sinabi na nila sa Pilipinas na ‘di ito pwede sa mga batang ‘di pa nagkakaroon ng dengue (That means, they already knew on December 22, 2015, and they should have told the Philippines the vaccine cannot be given to children who haven’t had dengue).” It was on December 22, 2015 when FDA allowed Sanofi to commercially sell Dengvaxia in the country. Sanofi only issued the warning on their vaccine more publicly on November 29, 2017. ■


MARCH 2-8, 2018 • NORCAL ASIAN JOURNAL • (650) 689-5160


A continuing revolution


THREE decades ago, millions of Filipinos took to the streets to seek the seemingly impossible: the ouster of a corrupt conjugal dictatorship. Since then, efforts to nurture the fragile, hard-won democracy have been marred by a long string of corruption scandals and continuing gross human rights violations. The restoration of democracy did not put an end to torture, enforced disappearances and summary executions, including those targeting left-leaning and environmental activists, journalists and legal professionals. Dictator Ferdinand Marcos now rests in peace, as he wished, in a cemetery for heroes. His clan and that of his widow Imelda Romualdez Marcos are back in power. As the nation marks 32 years since the dictatorship collapsed from the miracle of people power, the nation has slipped further in the global Corruption Perceptions Index of Transparency International. The International Criminal Court has launched a preliminary examination of the human rights situation in the Philippines under President Duterte. From 95th out of 168 countries included in the Corruption Perceptions Index in 2015, the Philippines slipped to 101st out of 176 in 2016, and fell to 111th among 180 countries last year. Transparency International did note that a ma-

jority of countries were moving too slowly in fighting corruption. Instead of comparing the Philippines with those moving slowly, however, the country should aspire to catch up with the better performers in the CPI. There has to be a connection between national prosperity and the absence of corruption. Countries that have consistently ranked high in the CPI are also among the world’s most advanced economies. They also place high in the happiness index, which measures quality of life indicators. Studies have shown the steep economic cost of corruption, with public funds going to the pockets of only a handful of individuals instead of being used for development and poverty alleviation programs. A desire to end the kleptocracy of the Marcos dictatorship as well as the systematic violations of human rights fueled the 1986 people power revolution. Today there are Filipinos who take for granted the hard-won freedoms that they

Editorial photo

have enjoyed for 32 years now. But democracy, even in advanced economies, is always a work in progress. With recent developments, the nation cannot be reminded often enough that vigilance

is the price of freedom. And the nation cannot afford to forget the lessons of the dictatorship, and the peaceful revolt that put an end to it. (

An overwhelming majority of Americans want stricter gun laws and a ban on assault rifles ENOUGH! This is the battle cry of Americans The Fil-Am following the massacre of 14 students and Perspective three staff members in Parkland, Florida — one of the worst in U.S. history — and just GEL SANTOS-RELOS another in the series of many mass shootings that have killed students and civilians in just a few years. President Donald Trump and Congress said they wanted to solve this worsening gun violence in the country. However, the tough rhetoric and “thoughts and prayers” have not translated to sensible gun control laws and regulations — thanks but no thanks to the lobbying of the powerful National Rifle Association (NRA) and its hefty campaign contributions to Trump and the Republicans in

PeaceMaker FORMER SPEAKER JOSE C. DE VENECIA, JR. (Part 3 of 3) *Remarks of Hon. Jose de Venecia - Former Speaker, Philippine House of Representatives; Founding Chairman and Chairman of Standing Committee, International Conference of Asian Political Parties (ICAPP); Co-Founder, Asian Parliamentary Assembly (APA); Chairman, International Association of Parliamentarians for Peace (IAPP); Special Envoy of the President to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) and for Intercultural Dialogue at the ICAPP Special Conference on the Silk Road last February 1-4, 2018; Tehran, Iran. Averting the ‘clash of civilizations’ As other pundits have spoken of the dangers of the “clash of civilizations” in our modern period, Iran’s then President Mohammad Khatami and other scholars introduced the more strategic, more pragmatic idea of a “dialogue among civilizations.” One of the great fruits of dialogue was the nuclear accord of 2015 which provided Iran relief from the U.S., U.N., and multilateral sanctions on energy, financial, shipping and other sectors, for indeed no less than the International Atomic Energy Agency certified that Iran had complied with the Agreement. While sanctions hurt Iran’s economy with the fall of crude oil exports from 2.5-million barrels per day to 1.1-million barrels by mid-2013, further compounded by the drastic fall in oil prices

Congress. Trump even repealed an Obama-era regulation that would have prevented people with mental illness from buying guns, an initiative the former president did in response to the non-action of Congress to legislate stricter gun laws after the Sandy Hook mass shooting. Trump proposed to strengthen implementation of background checks, and to arm teachers with guns. He initially pushed for increasing the minimum age to buy guns from 18 to 21, but has been deemed to be noncommittal about this since Friday, February 23, and after the open opposition of the NRA to this plan. Trump also vowed to write a law ban-

ning bump stocks if Congress does not do its job — these are accessories that convert semi-automatic weapons to rapid firing machine guns. Great, but why stop there, Mr. President? An AR-15 assault rifle was used by the shooter in the Parkland massacre. Assault rifles have been used by civilians in other mass shootings. Assault rifles were invented to kill people in the war zones, and were not intended to be used by civilians for sports or hunting hobbies. Even the Republican conservative icon and former President Ronald Reagan, with his strong ideological conviction to uphold the Second Amendment, did not agree that these deadly war weapons should be used by civilians. What hold does the NRA have on Trump and the Republican lawmakers? Have these elected public officials been

listening to the American people — a big majority of whom- Democrats, Republican, Independents and even responsible gun owners — are demanding for stricter gun laws to solve this fatal epidemic? Poll results Let me share with you the results of two polls that support this call. CNN poll: • 70 percent of Americans now favor stricter gun laws. • A majority of people (57 percent) who live in gun-owning households favor some new restrictions, and 49 percent of Republicans are onboard. • Some specific measures that are broadly popular: 87 percent favor banning felons and those with mental health problems from getting guns; 71 percent favor banning anyone under 21 from buying a firearm; and 63 percent favor a ban on high-capacity magazines.

• The poll also showed that President Trump is at his lowest approval rating — 35 percent — since taking office. USA Today/Suffolk poll: • 61 percent say “tightening gun- control laws and background checks would prevent more mass shootings in the United States.” • 63 percent say semiautomatic weapons should be banned. And 76 percent say people who have been treated for mental illness should be banned from owning guns. • That poll had Trump at 38 percent approval and 60 percent disapproval. *** Gel Santos Relos is the anchor of TFC’s “Balitang America.” Views and opinions expressed by the author in this columnÐare solely those of the authorÐand not of Asian Journal and ABS-CBN-TFC. For comments, go to, https://www.facebook. com/Gel.Santos.Relos

Different nations, a shared destiny Impressions of a balikbayan since early 2014, today Iran’s oil exports have returned to nearly pre-sanctions levels, and economic growth has grown to 7 percent in 2016, even spreading to the non-oil sectors, while Iran had regained access to some $115-billion in new hard currency. Major international aircraft manufacturers have sold new passenger aircraft to Iran’s commercial airlines. We in ICAPP note that as Iran plays a critical role in the One Belt One Road (OBOR) Initiative, the theme of the Conference, even with the 2010-2016 sanctions, major Asian countries continued working with the Iran economy, and growth has began to broaden even to the non-oil sector. Moreover, foreign direct investments in Iran under Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and President Rouhani have soared, growing five-fold to $12.2-billion in 2016. And major foreign investments of some $12.6-billion in petrochemicals, methanol and LNG plants, are today programmed in Iran’s PARS Region for 20182020. Sunni-Shiite Dialogue Excellencies, friends: On the raging Sunni-Shiite issues and the extremist violence in the Arab world, and the emergence of ISIS-ISIL in the battlegrounds of Syria and Iraq and even Libya, one cannot discount the magnitude of the barriers that intense doctrinal separation has raised between the two great schools of Islam and the emergence today of the radical, violent Islamic extremists, ISIS-ISIL. As we in ICAPP earlier advocated before in our letters to Saudi Arabia’s then King Abdullah and Iran’s spiritual leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei,

it would be of great relief to our region and indeed the world, if the two leaders of Islam, Saudi Arabia, representing the Sunnis, and Iran, representing the Shiites, respectively, could perhaps meet in Mecca and Medina and bring about the beginnings of reconciliation and the end of violence in the lands of Islam, and head off decisively the expansion and internationalization of the extremist groups, ISIS-ISIL. We believe the initiative is most difficult but not impossible. The bloody Catholic-Protestant conflicts in Europe that ran for centuries have long since ended, the latest achievement being the relatively recent “Good Friday” peace agreement that ended the brutal politico-religious Catholic-Protestant wars in Northern Ireland. Revival of 6-Party Talks and Korean Unification Today in Asia, we believe that the lingering conflict and potentially dangerous flashpoint in the Korean Peninsula with North Korea, now nucleararmed and continuously testing improved nuclear weaponry, and perhaps possibly even missiles launched from submarines, could be resolved peacefully through diplomacy, cooperation and sustained bilateral and/or multilateral dialogue. We urge the revival of the long-postponed Six-Party talks among the U.S., Russia, China, Japan, South Korea, and North Korea which would contribute to enhancing political stability and security not only in the Korean Peninsula but in the Asia Pacific region, and most importantly, hopefully lead to unite the two Koreas, forswear war, and together build a strong, united prosperous nation for the Kore-

an peoples in the first decades of the 21st Century. Most difficult indeed but not impossible. It had been done before in the case of the two Germanys and the two Vietnams. At some point, with God’s blessing, with strong, enlightened mutual will in sustained, sincere and patient even long-drawn-out negotiations, the inter-Korean family might perhaps emerge someday united in a unique, Federation under common inclusive leadership, and which could lead to a modern prosperous country in Northeast Asia. In pursuit of lasting peace Excellencies, friends: Today, we sadly note the most discouraging ongoing multiple crises in our region: the extremist violence and the wars in Iraq, Syria, although we have seen recent improvement, and new hostilities in Libya, the continuing violence in Afghanistan, the unresolved Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the unending Azerbaijan and Armenia conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, the continuing dangers and fear of explosion in the Korean Peninsula, the Buddhist and Muslim Rohingya difficulties in Myanmar, similar problems in Southern Thailand, the maritime tensions in the South China Sea and East China Sea, the Muslim and Communist insurgencies in the Philippines, and the other conflict areas in our region. While we are deeply aware of the historical and cultural roots of many of those conflicts—and the enmity and bitter divisions that have grown between rivals—we cannot turn away from the pursuit of peace because the alternative, which is conflict and war, would be immeasurably




I LEFT the Philippines for the U.S. 50 years ago and had my last vacation five years ago. Things have changed for the better — especially in the area of discipline — shades of the first few years of the Marcos regime. Here are my impressions from the outside looking in at people’s behaviors under President Duterte’s Administration: 1. People are more disciplined, respectful, and polite - from top government officials to food servers and the common “tao.” Government officials that we met were humble and grounded. Magalang. 2. Our trip started on a positive note as we breezed through customs in a new separate line for “Nothing to Declare.” Goodness gracious! We merely walked through Customs. No hustle, no lagay. 3. Senior discounts! U.S. should follow our lead. 4. I stayed for a month and did not observe anybody litter in the sidewalks. 5. No public spitting either. 6. No stinking garbage in the streets. I think that households are not allowed to bring trash out until just before pickup. Nice. 7. No kids or beggars knocking at car windows asking for “palimos.” 8. No street vendors hawking “yosi” or chewing gum.

9. No homeless people sleeping on public sidewalks. 10. Guns, guns, guns, and more guns. 11. Passengers waiting for taxi, bus and jeepneys line up and queue — you heard that right — commuters actually line up! What a sight to behold. I remember the old days of chaos, of “agawan” when people pushed and shoved each other to board jeepneys and bus. 12. I brought anti-mosquito lotions with deet and citronella. I had two encounters with mosquitos in four weeks of stay. Two. 13. I used lavatories with little water problems. 14. There are no paper tissues inside many CR or “comfort rooms.” 15. Table napkins are so thin and flimsy that they break and fall apart upon use. You end up using more. 16. Skyways in Metro Manila relieve traffic anxiety among tourists and reminds you of driving along freeways in the U.S. 17. Oh yes, driving is chaos. It’s a free for all affair. Crazy. Drivers don’t stop at stop signs. They don’t follow lanes: yet, we witnessed only one accident. Himala. 18. Kalesas are gone. 19. Jeepneys are almost gone. I feel sad to lose these Sarao and Francisco Motors decorative vehicles from surplus origins that graced travel magazines and once symbolized our country. 20. Palays are no longer spread for drying on main highways. I saw some but on the side of the roads. 21. But a traffic menace lingers: Tricycles! These slow moving transports rule roads


The views expressed by our Op-Ed contributors are solely their own and do not necessarily reflect the predilection of the editorial board and staff of Asian Journal.

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Dateline PhiliPPines


Different nations, a shared... PAGE A6 t

costly and make all of us losers. A dialogue for peace In the pursuit of the campaign for peace is the latest heartwarming proposal of Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif for a dialogue for peace in the Middle East, by itself a facet of Iran’s great proposal in the recent past for a “Dialogue among Civilizations.” Earlier, we spoke of a distant hope that someday, somehow in God’s own chosen time, the most difficult but not impossible Shiite-Sunni dialogue, with God’s benediction, may yet come to pass in our time. There was also an episode in recent years when our and ICAPP’s esteemed friend, the late President Rafsanjani visited Saudi Arabia in 2010 and enjoyed positive relations with then Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz. The late President Rafsanjani had expressed hopes that Iran and Saudi Arabia would have a close political and religious relationship. He said that “if the two countries are harmonized on regional issues and the Islamic world, seditionists will not be able to induce differences between Muslims.” We are reminded of these moments in recent history as Iran’s

Foreign Minister Zarif invokes the possibility of a revival of a dialogue for peace in the lands of Islam. Understanding among the great civilizations Excellencies, friends: On our part, we must say that we must strive relentlessly then to achieve the multicultural understanding which is the only basis for the long-term security of our Asian region and the global community. For understanding among the great civilizations is the only basis for global peace that will endure. Indeed, to this purpose we must mobilize mosques, churches, temples, synagogues—Buddhists, Hindus, Confucians, and Jews, no less than Christians and Muslims—as well as political parties and the whole of global civil society. And if there are historical grudges that remain, let us bring them out into the open, indeed, into the blazing searchlight of public scrutiny, if you will—so that they may be threshed out by dialogue, reason and compromise. We must create space for alternative faiths A great Western president once said memorably that the 21st Century will be defined by

Impressions of a...

PAGE A6 t going to the provinces. And there are plenty of them. They clog highways. Despite a column of vehicles jammed behind them, they stubbornly refuse to yield and move to right lanes for slow traffic. Pasaway. Shades of old Philippines. 22. Subways are the final solution to our traffic woes; all others are temporary bandaid fixes. 23. There are three major sports seasons in the U.S.: basketball, football, and baseball. Here we also have three: basketball, basketball, and basketball. Yes, we are fond of Curry, LeBron, KD, Jordan, and Kobe but corporate sponsors need to reallocate their support to sports where height is not a major factor. 24. Bicycling, weight lifting, Tennis, anyone? Perhaps Olympic medalist Hidilyn Diaz can get funding to promote weightlifting. Golf champion Jason Day

needs another Fil-Am to bolster our stock at the golf course. Asian ladies dominate the international scene. I remember watching a colorful (literally) golfer Jennifer Rosales share a lead at the U.S. Open many moons ago. 25. We salute boxing promoters like ALA, Manny Pacquiao, Salud, Yap, Elorde, Pinol, and Penalosa for supporting local boxers. Our boxers need more lucrative fights in America. They need more world class sparring partners at Freddie Roach’s Wild Card Gym in Los Angeles, Robert Garcia Boxing Academy in Oxnard, or Kronk Gym in Detroit. To compete with elite boxers worldwide, our trainers need to shift strategy from head hunting to body punching. It’s harder to win WBA or WBO titles without great body work. (BTW: I offered Rodel Mayol and Romero Duno a choice to shop or watch an NBA game. As expected, they chose to see a Los Angeles Lakers exclusive

a simple choice that the nations must make—whether to emphasize their ethnic, ideological, and religious differences or their common humanity. But nations can never make the right choice, for as long as their peoples insist that “our faith must reign supreme”—since this claim can be affirmed only by the negation of all other faiths. So we, the political parties in Asia, whether those of the left, the center, or the right must reinterpret our traditions to embrace pluralism in culture and in society. We in ICAPP and in the international organizations represented in our conference must learn to create space for other systems and alternative faiths. After all, every great religion arose from the same wellspring of faith—accepting, for its central belief, God’s direct and decisive intervention in human history—by revealing Himself to humankind. Lastly, we must all accept that peace is much more than the absence of conflict. And, Excellencies, friends, today here in Tehran, we must take to heart the simple truth that peace indeed is a community of sharing; that we all belong to “one great human family under God.” n practice at Staples Center in LA Live). 26. Culinary presentation has improved but bulalo and bagoong rule! Despite health risks, we get stuck in the dark ages. We feast on sodium and fats that lead to high blood pressure, stroke, gout, and diabetes. The Department of Health needs to step up public awareness to improve our eating habits. It’s hard to find restaurants offering vegetables. But Bagoong is all over. Until then, long live Bagoong! Salamat po. *** Victor Santos Sy graduated Cum Laude from UE with a BBA and from Indiana State University with an MBA. Vic worked with SyCip, Gorres, Velayo (SGV - Andersen Consulting) and Ernst & Young before establishing Sy Accountancy Corporation in Pasadena, California.

*** He has 50 years of experience in defending taxpayers audited by the IRS, FTB, EDD, BOE and other governmental agencies. He is publishing a book on his expertise - “HOW TO AVOID OR SURVIVE IRS AUDITS.” Our readers may inquire about the book or email tax questions at


FLOWER DANCE. Students from various universities in Baguio City participate in the grand street dancing competition, one of the activities to mark the Panagbenga Festival. On Sunday, February 25, 23 colorful floats will join the flower float parade, the highlight of the annual festival. photo by Thom Picaña

Con-Com votes for presidential-federal... would also have individual federal states with separate federal legisMarch 5. lature and local governments like Under the presidential-federal the United States. system, the national government Pimentel earlier proposed the would still be led by a president, inclusion of Sabah in the Philipvice president along with the ex- pine territory. The country would ecutive, legislative and judiciary be divided into 12 federal states branches. However, Philippines including: Northern Luzon, Cen-


tral Luzon, Southern Luzon, Bicol, Eastern Visayas, Central Visayas, Western Visayas, Minparom, Northern Mindanao, Southern Mindanao, and Bangsamoro. He suggested that Metro Manila will be the “federal capital,” while Sabah could be the 13th federal state. (Rosette Adel/


march 2-8, 2018 • NOrcaL aSIaN JOUrNaL • (650) 689-5160

(650) 689-5160 •




Federal judge finds ICE and LA County sheriff collaborate to unlawfully detain immigrants WHILE the national attention on immigration focuses on the United States Congress coming up with a solution for the recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and debating multiple immigration issues along with border security, the Trump administration continues to transform the United States’ immigration enforcement practices. Neighborhoods throughout the United States are experiencing the cruel, harsh, and devastating consequences of the Trump administration’s Executive Orders on immigration and its enforcement priorities. After a year in the White House, the Trump administration’s immigration enforcement polices clearly violated rights of United States citizens and non-citizens, created fear in communities, and cultivated bigotry. On February 7, 2018, an important ruling from a United States District Court judge in California surprisingly flew under the radar. Roy v. County of Los Angeles and Gonzalez v. ICE are a combined class action lawsuit that involved the use of immigration detainers by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to hold suspected noncitizens up to 48 hours after release from jail by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (“LA Sheriff”) The federal judge ruled that the LA Sheriff violated the Fourth Amendment rights of individuals who were held too long, denied bail or detained despite lack of evidence. The Fourth Amendment protects individuals, no matter what his or her immigration status is in the United States, by providing rights against illegal search and seizures and arbitrary arrests. The federal judge found that ICE and the LA Sheriff unlawfully detained thousands of suspected immigrants using unconstitutional requests, specifically with immigration detainers.

Your Immigration Solution Michael Bhotiwihok and nancy Miller The federal judge reasoned that since the LA Sheriff had no probable cause showing that the individuals were involved in criminal activity, there was no authority to arrest the individual for civil immigration offenses. In addition, the federal judge held that ICE cannot issue immigration detainers based only on an individual being born in another country. This ruling impacts those individuals held between 2010 to

means fairness and the idea that everyone deserves fair treatment by the United States government whenever any civil liberties are at stake. More specifically, state and local law enforcement agencies are not allowed to enforce immigration detainers issued by ICE. The CVA neither allows the deputization of police as immigration agents nor state and local law enforcement agencies from inquiring into an individual’s immigration status. The CVA also ensures that schools, hospitals, libraries, and courthouses remain safe and accessible spaces for every individual in California. In Los Angeles, Police Chief Charlie Beck has written that the Los Angeles Police Department “is neither authorized nor responsible for the enforcement of civil immigration laws or regulations” further cementing Los Angeles as a sanctuary city. In addition, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti previously stated that “we are absolutely a city that not only does provide sanctuary to immigrants, but we defend them.” This week ICE detained more than 100 individuals in the Los Angeles metropolitan area in ongoing operations which are targeting 400 people. ICE spokesperson Danielle Bennett blamed “uncooperative jurisdictions” for its use of “additional resources to conduct atlarge arrests in the community, putting officers, the public, and aliens at risks and increasing the incidents of collateral arrests.” ICE’s current enforcement operations are a clear reaction to California and Los Angeles’ firm stance protecting individuals’ constitutional rights. As the Trump administration continues its aggressive immigration enforcement policies, those with existing deportation orders, noncitizens who are out of status or who have been arrested for crimes are likely to be

“ This ruling impacts those individuals held between 2010 to 2014 by the largest sheriff’s department.” 2014 by the largest sheriff’s department in the United States. The case’s ruling applies to individuals across the United States, not only Los Angeles County, who are impacted by immigration detainers. Because of the court’s ruling, class members across the country are entitled to injunctive relief and may be eligible for monetary damages. On January 1, 2018, the landmark passage of SB 54, the California Values Act (CVA), made the state of California a sanctuary state by limiting its local law enforcement agencies cooperation with federal agents in enforcing immigration laws and conducting raids. The CVA upholds California’s values of fairness and procedural due process for all individuals in the state. Due process simply


BPO sector calls on DTI, BOI to guard vs incentives reform The Department of Public Works and Highways signed recently the contract with Ove Arup & Partners Hong Kong Ltd. for the preparation of feasibility studies and detained engineering designs for new projects consisting mainly of inter-island bridges, tunnels and highways. file photo by RichmonD


THE business process outsourcing (BPO) industry is urging the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and its lead agency responsible for the promotion of investments to stand up and protect investors in the ongoing tax reform program of the administration which would soon include the rationalization of fiscal incentives in the country. “I would like to see the DTI and BOI (Board of Investments) to lead on that regard, (to) make sure that there is that balance because their mandate is investment promotion, to be able to generate jobs. And if the invest-

ments don’t come in, the objective of generating more jobs will not happen,” Philippine Association of Multinational Companies Regional Headquarters Inc. (PAMURI) director Celeste Ilagan said. “We don’t see a mother agency. We haven’t heard the DTI come out for us, saying that investors would have their rights protected. I guess that’s the general sentiment we heard in the industry,” added Ilagan, who also serves as senior vice president to a leading BPO company. As the government moves to undertake its tax reform program, Ilagan said the proposed rationalization of incentives should not lead to the “detriment

of not being able to attract the investors.” “We support the Build Build Build program of the government because we want to see ourselves at par with our neighboring countries, at par with the infrastructure of our neighbors, but we also know this program will take three to five years before we reach that stature that we want to have for the country,” she said. “In the meantime, we should protect ourselves from the presence of uncertainty of doing business in the Philippines. Investors would like to have that assurance, and therefore, we would like to make sure that we


DOE seeks more partners for e-vehicle charging stations by Danessa


THE Department of Energy (DOE) is looking for more partners to put up charging stations to support the country’s adoption of electric vehicles (e-vehicles) for public and private use after getting the support of two of the largest oil players. “The DOE supports the modernization of public transport, the introduction of e-vehicles in public

“The DOE supports the modernization of public transport, the introduction of e-vehicles in public transport as well as in private use,” DOE Secretary Alfonso Cusi said. File photo from



Community Journal


California divorce frequently asked questions I JUST moved to California last month, and I’d like to file for divorce. Can I file now? To file for divorce in the State of California, the person filing (called the “Petitioner”) must first meet the jurisdictional requirements: (i) residence in the state of California from the past 6 months; and (ii) residence in the county where that person is filing (e.g., San Diego County) for the past 3 months. Residence – put simply, where the Petitioner lives – also determines which courthouse the Petition for Divorce should be filed. “What if my husband/wife does not want to sign the divorce?” or “My husband/wife does not want to sign the divorce papers, what can I do.” California is a no-fault divorce state. A party filing for divorce does not need the consent of the other in order to file a Petition for Dissolution (Divorce) or, in some instances, to get a judgment of divorce. What is “Service of Process?” Can I just mail the divorce papers to my ex-spouse? Service of Process is a crucial procedural

The CTV Files atty. lilli B. BaCuli step in the divorce proceedings, because the law reserves for the ex-spouse (called the “Respondent”) the right to respond and appear in court, if s/he wants to. In proceeding in an action for divorce, there are procedural requirements dictated by law that must be followed to ensure that the other party has notice of the action (that is, that s/he is being brought to court for an action of divorce) and that s/he is given time to respond. However, there is no requirement for the other party to respond. There is no requirement that s/he sign any document at all. All that needs to happen is that s/he is properly served with process according to the rules. Note that “proper service” is defined in the Family Code and must be followed, and

the validity of any Judgment for Divorce rests on the proper service of the Respondent. “What? I have to share my retirement earnings? This is mine, I worked hard for it!” California is a community property state and so once you get married, all property acquired during marriage is community property. Separate property are “all property acquired before marriage; all gifts, bequests, devise, or descents. All property acquired or exchanged with traceable separate property; and all property acquired after separation.” However, if anything out of the community property is used towards separate property, the community might have a claim on part(s) of separate property. “I don’t want to pay spousal support.” Whether you like it or not, spousal support will be ordered if the other party makes a request, and the court deems that the circumstances call for it. Some of the factors that the Court will look at to determine whether there is basis for support, and if so, in what amount,


Health@Heart PhiliP S. Chua, MD, FaCS, FPCS

OUR team from Las Vegas and other states just completed our annual medical missions, first in Alaminos, Laguna (February 4-8), followed by another in Kamay ni Hesus Pilgrimage Center in Lucban, Quezon, (February 812). The following morning after we returned to Manila on February 12, my wife, Farida, and I, took a cab to San Francisco del Monte, Quezon City, where I grew up, to visit with my sister and brotherin-law who were from Raleigh, North Carolina, on a separate medical mission and to staying at our family home. On the way there, the taxi driver pointed to a large yellow and green G Liner bus and said “Yang bus na yan kay Erap; yan lang and pwedeng magpasada dito. (“That bus company is owned by Erap – nickname of Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada, former president u PAGE CJ3 of the Philippines – and that’s the only bus allowed to do business in this part of the city”). So, I inquired why the monopoly. “Walang utak at integridad po yan at tuso pa, oportunista, numero unong kurakot, at maraming babae,” (He does not have the brain nor integrity and is greedy, an opportunist, number 1 corrupt, and has many mistresses), he responded. Since he was jailed for corruption, plunder, before, I asked how did he win as mayor. He said, “Kasi ho karamihan ng taong bumoboto ay torpe, at stupido, marami walang pinagaralan… mabayaran lang ng limang daan or isang libo, iboboto nila kahit na si satanas. Sa hueteng lang po, billion ang nanakaw ni Erap; dapat ho sa plunder, nakulong siya pang habang buhay, at hindi naging mayor (Because, sir, the majority of people who are voting are dumb and stupid, most uneducated…paid 500 or 1000 pesos, they would vote even for Satan. From the illegal numbers game alone, sir, Erap has stolen billions; for plunder, he should have been imprisoned for life,” and did not become Mayor). Why couldn’t Congress get rid of graft and corruption, I tried to egg him on, because I was fascinated by the refreshing sense this man was making, underneath his uncombed hair, shabby looking shirt, and ignorant-appearing demeanor. Obviously, beneath this rather unimpressive cover is a fascinating patriot, filled with great wisdom, sense of justice, integrity, and honor. “Kasi po, halos lahat ng mga nasa congress, senado, ay corrupt din, magnanakaw, kaya hin-


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Wisdom from a taxi driver di nila mapipigil ang presidente at iban pang opisyales (Because almost all legislators are also corrupt and are thieves themselves, the reason why they could not stop the president and other government officials).” I asked how he would rate President Duterte, he said he was originally from Davao and moved to Manila in 1999, and was a supporter the current president when he was mayor of Davao, but was very disappointed now because almost all of those thousands killed in “Tokhang” were addicts and not drug lords. He added that Duterte has not gotten rid of corrupt legislators and all the thieves are still in Congress instead of in prison. “Kung ang mga pinatay ay ang mga kurap na senador at congresista, at hindi young mga daan daang drug addicts, mas napabuti sana ang ating bansa (If those hundreds who were killed were the corrupt senators and congressmen, instead of the drug addicts, our nation would have been better off),” he said with great disdain. Unlike most writers and commentators in the media, this driver did not mince words and did not care to be politically correct. He was fiercely angry and very vocal about the graft and corruption in the government, the injustice in our society, and doubted if the president was not himself corrupt. “Yun imbestigasyon ng mga anomalya at plunder, kamukha noong kay Binay at pamilya nya, yung kay Gloria Macapagal, kay Duterte…nawala na, tahimik na…walang hustisya dito (The investigation of anomalies and plunder, like the ones against Binay and his family, against Gloria Macapagal, against Duterte…all have stopped and now silent… there is no justice here),” the driver lamented. My wife, who is a pediatrician, asked him about the Dengvaxia controversy. “Delikado ho yaan sa publiko; ngayon, matatakot na lahat ng magulang at hindi na aayun na magpabakuna ang mga anak nila, kahit na anong bakuna. Sayang lang ang mga bakunang na imbento (That’s dangerous for the public, now the parents are scared and will not allow their children to be vaccinated, no matter what vaccine. It is a waste of “discovered” vaccines),” he said. Farida later told me she could not have said it any better. We have talked to several taxi drivers in the past and we find most of them misinformed or uninformed, expressing their own “expert” opinions, but this driver appeared to be an exception. Farida and I were very amused and impressed. We told him we wished he could be interviewed

by the media to share his words of wisdom and to inspire others. Why couldn’t our government officials, legislators; supposedly educated and cultured, have the wisdom and integrity of this man on the street? Why aren’t they able to effectively police themselves to end graft and corruption in our government and serve our people with dignity and honor? It is not that hard to determine who are corrupt. The government could hire renowned foreign actuarial firms, which could actually compute accurately the assets, liabilities, and net worth of a person from the day he was born, and find out how much unexplained wealth any person or government official has. This will easily expose the criminals in our government. But the question is, would the president, chief justice, or Congress have the balls and the integrity to initiate such a move? Or would this be a self-incriminating and a suicidal act? Who is innocent and beyond reproach to cast the first stone? Perhaps I am too naïve to understand, and too dumb to accept; the ugly and sad reality that is holding our country and people hostage. As the driver pointed out, the blame is on us. “We, the People,” voted these previously known corrupt officials and thieves into office, time after time, only for them to continue to ravage our country and walk in the halls of Congress all the way to their banks, here and abroad. The uneducated and poor people who sell their votes at least have an excuse — to help feed their family — but the educated rich and middle class, who are part of the majority who voted the crooked officials into office bear more of the blame and shame. Strictly speaking, allowing plunderers to hold office, enabling them to destroy our country, is tantamount to treason. Indeed, we deserve the monster we have created and the devastation it is causing our nation and our people. *** Philip S. Chua, MD, FACS, FPCS, Cardiac Surgeon Emeritus in Northwest Indiana and chairman of cardiac surgery from 1997 to 2010 at Cebu Doctors University Hospital, where he holds the title of Physician Emeritus in Surgery, is based in Las Vegas, Nevada. He is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, the Philippine College of Surgeons, and the Denton A. Cooley Cardiovascular Surgical Society. He is the chairman of the Filipino United Network – USA, a 501(c)(3) humanitarian foundation in the United States. For more data, visit; Email: scalpelpen@ (Advertising Supplement

Pareto’s 80/20 rule or how to make a molehill out of a mountain

Immigrant Living: 101 and Beyond Monette aDeva Maglaya ARE you one of those people who seem to be sucker punched by the overwhelming number of things that need to get done in a workdaday world? Do you feel overwhelmed by your to do list? Don’t worry. You’re not alone. There’s hope for us all when we remember this statement below: Eighty percent of things don’t matter; twenty percent do. In the late nineteenth century, Vilfredo Pareto, an Italian sociologist introduced the concept of THE 80/20 RULE which states that in any given group, only 20 percent will constitute what is important and the remaining 80 percent will be trivial. This rule is referred to as the “vital few” and the “trivial many”. While this concept was originally meant to be applied to the principles of economics and sociology, the 80/20 rule can be applied to just about anything that involves a list or a group of elements in daily life. Using the Pareto principle will clear your life of overwhelming junk. In a list of goals for instance, using the Pareto principle will force someone to prioritize the top two or three goals that are significant to him. Use this principle when dealing with a list of things to do for the day. Recognizing the few important ones and doing them ahead of the trivial ones will keep you from being sidetracked. Our to-do lists become shorter, more realistic and more manageable. A mountain of tasks can overwhelm. But those who slice and dice can get things done. Many try to get around by nibbling at the small, easy things around the edges, putting off the more important ones for later until time is up and the important ones are left undone. By making it a

habit to spot the important ones first and “slay these dragons” ahead of anything else, there is a certain sense of calm that one acquires even if not everything in the list has been done. The nature of modern life screams for many things to be done all at the same time. With time saving devices purportedly meant to squeeze as much as can be done in our waking hours, expectations can become unrealistic. The stress of trying to do too much too soon can make anyone ill. Stressing and straining kill off our brain cells over time which

hopes and dreams that are in that future state of being called the “Someday Isle (I’ll)”. You can narrow these down to only the important goals and be free of the downright preposterous. The brain also benefits from using the 80/20 rule. In lengthy, circuitous discussions of problems and solutions, having a sharp, incisive mind helps one to get down to the root of the problem quickly, shorten the angst and pain of indecision and come up with the right solution in less time it normally takes to mull over a problem. Einstein must have subscribed to this principle. In his admonition to find simplicity out of clutter, he advises to try not to remember anything that can be looked up in a book. He who was noted for having a poor memory when he was young probably refused to burden his brain with the unimportant thus optimizing its functions and allowing him to plumb the depths of the secrets of the universe. Reserving the full capacity of his towering genius for unraveling the mysteries of time and space and for writing down his profound thoughts about the universe and its Creator, life and living, he exemplifies a life that made a difference at the highest rungs. So repeat this one liner below as your mantra as you do your spring cleaning for the year. Remember it as you approach your sunset years and decide to be clutter free, downsizing and living on less but going full bore on creating amazing memories instead. Eighty percent of things don’t matter; twenty percent do.

“The art of being wise is knowing what to over look.” — William James then cause strokes and many debilitating illnesses to all our body parts, specially in our extremities, like the toes and our fingers and particularly affects our vision. Using the Pareto principle cuts through the muck. Weighing things according to importance may even be more valuable than learning how to multitask. This acquired skill of gauging the value of tasks can add so much to the quality of one’s life freeing up more time to simply enjoy life. The wonderful thing about adopting a “Pareto frame of mind” is that you begin to develop the habit of clear thinking that not only gives you more time, it can also provide you with more space—clutter free. Woohoo!!! If you want to simplify your life, you can look at your possessions and decide which things are important for you to keep and which ones should be sold or given away, thus reclaiming the space for you to enjoy. You can also apply this to the clutter of too many unrelated

*** Nota Bene: Monette Adeva Maglaya is SVP of Asian Journal Publications, Inc. To send comments, e-mail monette.


(650) 689-5160 •

Should President Trump deport his in-laws? PRESIDENT Donald Trump is fiercely opposed to family “chain migration” and wants to limit family petitions to spouses and minor children of green card holders or U.S. citizens. He wants to eliminate petitions for parents (IR), married (F-3) and adult single children (F-1), and siblings (F-4) of U.S. citizens, and adult unmarried children of green card holders (F-2B). But wait a second! Melania’s parents, Viktor and Amalija Knavs, are confirmed to be lawful permanent residents (green card holders), and reportedly waiting for their oath taking schedule to become U.S. citizens. So the question is: HOW did they get their green cards? While the White House will not give information on how Melania’s parents obtained their green cards, a petition by her appears to be the most likely way. However, this is precisely the type of petition Pres. Trump now wants to eliminate. He is opposed to citizens petitioning their parents. So, what should he do with his in-laws? Send them back to Slovenia? (In fact, they list their address at Trump’s Mara-Lago golf course in Florida.) Realistically, there are two ways to get a green card — through a family based petition,

fiercely against it for other families. In the meantime, anyone who is thinking of petitioning their parents, siblings, etc. should do so as soon as possible, just in case Trump goes ahead and eliminates these family based petitions. *** Michael J. Gurfinkel has been an attorney for over 35 years and is licensed, and an active member of the State Bar of California and New York. All immigration services are provided by, or under the supervision of, an active member of the State Bar of California. Each case is different. The information contained herein including testimonials, “Success Stories,” endorsements and re-enactments) is of a general nature, and is not intended to apply to any particular case, and does not constitute a prediction, warranty, guarantee or legal advice regarding the outcome of your legal matter. No attorney-client relationship is, or shall be, established with any reader. WEBSITE: Follow us on and Twitter @GurfinkelLaw Call Toll free to schedule a consultation for anywhere in the US: (866)—GURFINKEL


or an employer. Melania’s father is now 73 years old and worked as a chauffeur and car salesman in Slovenia. Her mother, now 71, was a pattern maker at a textile factory. It would be extremely uphill to obtain a green card as a chauffeur or pattern maker in the U.S. The applicant would be required to show there are no qualified U.S. workers for that job. Moreover, Melania’s parents would have been in their late 60’s at the time of the employment based visa processing, likely past their retirement age. It also appears unlikely that they obtained legal status through asylum or refugee status. Therefore, Melania’s parents most likely immigrated to the U.S. through “chain migration”. Pres. Trump is thrilled to have his in-laws in the U.S. So given the fact that he personally bene- Four offices to serve you: LOS ANGELES · fited from and experienced chain SAN FRANCISCO · NEW YORK · PHILIPPINES migration within his own family, (Advertising Supplement) it would be hypocritical to be so



California divorce frequently asked... PAGE CJ2 t

are – length of marriage, age of parties, if there are minor children in the marriage, income of both parties. “Why do I need an attorney?” You don’t need an attorney. There is no requirement that you must have an attorney. However, in cases involving issues such as domestic violence, custody disputes, child support, spousal support, and division of community property assets it would be wise to seek advice from a licensed and experienced attorney so as not to waste your time and money, not to mention the court’s time and resources,

especially when you have to keep going back to court because of incomplete or missing documents that could have been addressed from the very beginning by a competent and knowledgeable attorney. Not all divorce cases are the same. It is important to be properly informed about your rights and responsibilities under California law in divorce proceedings. The wrong advice or information can and will hurt you, and waste your time and money. Consult a licensed and experienced family law attorney to help you navigate through your divorce. ***

Calendar of Events across

Atty. Lilli Berbano Baculi is an associate attorney with Chua Tinsay & Vega, A Professional Legal Corporation (CTV) - a full service law firm with offices in San Francisco, San Diego, Sacramento and Philippines. The information presented in this article is for general information only and is not, nor intended to be, formal legal advice nor the formation of an attorney-client relationship. Call or e-mail CTV for an in-person or phone consultation to discuss your particular situation and/or how their services may be retained at (619) 955-6277; (415) 4958088; (916) 449-3923; lbaculi@ctvattys. com. For general information visit www. (Advertising Supplement)



Filipino American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Los Angeles’s gala night “Together in Electric Dreams” is the 80s-themed gala night & induction of the 2018 Officers & Board Members of the Filipino American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Los Angeles (FACC-GLA) where it will formally launch its “Fil-Am Entrepreneurship Movement.” Everyone is invited to celebrate and relive 80s fashion, and party from 6 p.m. up to midnight at the Olympic Collection at 11301 W Olympic Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90064. Tickets available at


Fil-Am Association of SCV’s fundraising event and inaugural ball in Valencia, CA

CONQUERING THE FEAR OF UNCERTAINTY AND SIX ICE AGENTS KNOCKING AT THEIR DOOR ON THIS SUNDAY’S “CITIZEN PINOY!” After they were offered jobs as caregivers, Danilo (left) and Millet (center) took a big gamble when they decided to stay in the U.S. to pursue their American dream. It was not easy, especially after their hard-earned money was lost to a lawyer who hardly did anything to move their case forward. They eventually went out of status, and even had I.C.E. agents come knocking on their door. The couple then consulted with Atty. Michael Gurfinkel, who took over the case, and helped them acquire their green cards. Leading U.S. immigration attorney Michael Gurfinkel (right) was also able to help their two daughters avail of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, and getting approval on their green cards the same day President Trump cancelled DACA. Watch this encore episode of “Citizen Pinoy” – on Sunday at 6:15 p.m. (PST) on TFC. (Advertising Supplement)

Business News

NLEX opens 2 new Pampanga interchanges by CATHERINE


NLEX Corp. opened on Monday, February 26, two new interchanges in the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) and Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEX), facilitating more efficient mobility for motorists. The new access ramps to SCTEX in Barangay Mabiga, which formed part of the Mabiga Interchange were officially opened Monday. The completed road projects involved the elimination of the U-Turn slot near Mabiga into a full diamond interchange by building new access ramps with entry and exit toll plazas. “This major expressway redesign is seen to improve road safety on this strategic location where the two expressway systems merge with the local traffic network,” NLEX Corp. said. The tollways company also opened a right-turning exit ramp of the North Luzon Expressway in Barangay Santa Ines, paving the way for more convenient travel for motorists heading to Magalang and Concepcion towns. “These enhancements are intended to advance safety and productivity for both motorists and commuters by improving the connectivity of our expressways to and from the MacArthur Highway and other local roads in Pampanga,” said Metro Pacific Tollways and NLEX Corp. president and chief executive officer Rodrigo Franco. Franco said the projects would bring greater developments in Mabalacat, providing better access and facilitating efficient transport of goods and services in the area. The state-owned Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA), the original concessionaire of the SCTEX, welcomed the opening of the new road projects. “We are proud to support NLEX Corp. in providing safe, reliable, and people-oriented projects such as the SCTEX Mabiga Interchange. The interchange will enable a smooth and faster flow of traffic for motorists going to Subic or Tarlac,” BCDA president and chief executive officer Vince Dizon said. Dizon said the construction of two toll plazas,

detained by local law enforcement agencies and ICE. It is important for noncitizens to know their constitutionally protected rights. Noncitizen detained by local law enforcement or ICE should, of course, immediately consult with a knowledgeable and experienced immigration attorney to ensure that his or her constitutional rights and free-


Philippine American Bar Association’s 32nd installation & awards gala The Philippine American Bar Association (PABA) invites you to its 32nd Installation and Awards Gala on Wednesday, March 14 at the Omni Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles. This year’s Gala will feature keynote speaker California Supreme Court Justice Goodwin Liu, a menu of Filipino flavors, and special performances. PABA will be PABA will be honoring Distinguished Leader Ben Hofileña, Jr. (20th Century Fox Film Senior Counsel), Trailblazer Ruthe Ashley (California LAW Executive Director Emeritus), and Community Champion Minh T. Nguyen (The Law Office of Minh T. Nguyen, ALC). During the gala, PABA also will formally unveil its new logo and website, both of which were developed by a Fil-Am-owned start-up and involve colors and designs deeply rooted in the cultural history of the Philippines. A cocktail reception and auction will begin at 6 p.m., while the dinner and program will begin at 7 p.m. To purchase tickets or a sponsorship, please visit:


Glenn Miller Orchestra to perform in Stevenson Ranch, CA NEW INTERCHANGES: NLEX Corp. opened on Monday, February 26, two new interchanges in the North Luzon Expressway and Subic-ClarkTarlac Expressway, facilitating more efficient mobility for motorists. In photo during the ceremonial drive through are (from left) Mabalacat City Mayor Chrisostomo Garbo, Pampanga Rep. Gloria MacapagalArroyo, Metro Pacific Tollways Corp. president and chief executive officer Rodrigo Franco and Bases Conversion and Development Authority president and chief executive officer Vince Dizon. Photo by Boy Santos/Philstar.comr

ramps and full diamond interchange is an assurance that the private sector is committed to building world-class infrastructure projects that would bring a more convenient travel experience to many Filipinos. “This also proves that the turnover of SCTEX concession to the private sector in 2015 was a sound decision as the NLEX Corp. continues to further improve the expressway facilities and services,” he said. For his part, Mabalacat City Mayor Crisostomo Garbo lauded the tollways company in its continued effort to improve the accessibility from MacArthur Highway for the comfort and convenience of the local motorists. “In this fast-paced era, connectivity does not only come in digitals but more so in our transport system and the North Luzon Expressway swiftly responds to the demand for better expressway services,” Garbo said. In 2016, the NLEX Corp. added eight kilometers of new expressway in Mabalacat City, including new bridges at Brgy. Balem and Brgy. Quitanguil. This project segregated northbound and southbound motorists along separate carriageways and have since enhanced traffic safety. ■

Federal judge finds ICE and LA County sheriff... PAGE CJ1 t

The Fil-Am Association of Santa Clarita Valley (SCV), Inc. invites the community to a fundraising event and inaugural ball of the board of officers and trustees on Sunday, March 11 at 5 p.m. It will be held at the Hyatt Regency Valencia — 24500 Town Center Dr., Valencia, CA 91355. The Fil-Am Association of SCV, Inc. is a non-profit that engages in cultural, social, outreach and community service to approximately 8,000 Fil-Ams living in Santa Clarita Valley. This 2018 marks the associations 35th year in serving the community through its outreach and Fil-Am academic and cultural enhancement programs which include scholarship achievement awards, programs for the seniors, youth and single programs, as well as cultural events. For tickets, please contact Josie Maglalang at (661) 607-5665, Zeny Justiniano at (661) 645-0948, Emie Carrillo at (661) 877-2699, and Zony Gordon (661) 312-3422.

doms are protected. However, the better practice would be to consult with the immigration lawyer before being detained to determine whether relief is available. *** Reeves Miller Zhang & Diza is one of the oldest, largest and most experienced immigration firms in the United States with offices in Pasadena, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Manila and China.

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The world-famous Glenn Miller Orchestra will swing into the Santa Clarita Valley for a special one-night only event to be held at West Ranch High School (26255 Valencia Blvd. Stevenson Ranch, CA 91381) on Monday, March 19 at 7 p.m. The most sought-after big band in the world will take the stage with bandleader Nick Hilscher at the helm, performing beloved hits from their extensive library, which includes “In the Mood,” “Moonlight Serenade,” and “Pennsylvania 6-5000.” Hosted by West Ranch High School’s music program, the concert will be an event for all ages and offers the chance to experience history, enjoy the magical melodies and walk away knowing you’re supporting a new generation of talented musicians in the processes. Tickets are $25 for seniors/students, $30 for general, and $35 for VIP. Prices increase by $5 at the door the day of the event. Tickets are available online at westranchmusic. com, by phone at (661) 222-1220 ext. 645, or at one of the locations: Nick Rail Music - 25868 McBean Pkwy., Valencia, CA, (661) 288-2345; Nationwide Insurance, 23236 Lyons Ave. #205, Newhall, CA, (661) 254-1714; Innovations Salon - 25830 The Old Road, Stevenson Ranch, CA. (661) 255-5580; or Bella Cucina - 27911 Seco Canyon Rd. in Saugus, (661) 263-1414.

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Immigration forum in Anaheim, CA There will be a FREE immigration forum on Thursday, February 29 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Brookhurst Community Center (2271 Crescent Ave., Anaheim, CA 92801). RSVP is a MUST to attend. No registration fee required. Please contact (714) 657-7460 or Attendees will be able to get information on the following topics: How to find H-1B/green card sponsoring companies, tips for a successful H-1B interview, job placement assistance for qualified applicants with start-ups in Orange County, and a list of top 100 H1-B employers in the OC. Global Law Centers strives to inform the immigrant community of its rights and make sure it is knowledgeable about what immigration processes might be available. The forum will also update everyone about new and recent changes which may affect immigrants and their families. Refreshments will be provided to all attendees. For more information about Global Law Centers, please visit


SALIDA: Simbolo at Kultura in Queens, NY AFTA presents its latest fundraising event - “SALIDA: Simbolo at Kultura” – a cultural dinner show featuring the internationally recognized dance troupe from the Philippines, the Leyte Dance Theater, which will kick off their USA TOUR 2018 in NYC. The event is on April 14, 2018, 3:00 pm at the Rock Church in Woodside, Queens. “Salida” aims to raise funds and awareness to support the flagship projects of the Association of Fil-am Teachers of America, Inc. (AFTA) with their partners: The Rock Churches Worldwide and the Leyte Biliran & Samar Federation. Proceeds of this fundraiser will finance AFTA’s projects in the Philippines like Adopt a School (Marawi City, Biliran and Albay, Adopt a Scholar, and Balikturo). For Sponsorship opportunities, contact Roxanne at 347-932-6631 or Nitz at 862-368-1706 or any AFTA officer/board member.

If you have an upcoming event and would like us to post it, please email us the details at or


MARCH 2-8, 2018 • NORCAL ASIAN JOURNAL • (650) 689-5160

People & Events 2018 San Carlos Earth Day clean-up Free household hazardous waste Help the city of good living stay “green” on April 14 disposal event on March 10 WANT to make a difference this Earth Day? Roll up your sleeves and join the City of San Carlos on Saturday, April 14, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., to clean up downtown Laurel Street and improve Vista Park by adding plants and mulch. This year’s Earth Day event will be split between two locations. Depending on your interests, volunteers will either meet at Harrington Park, 759 Laurel Street or Vista Park, 400 Crestview Drive. It is recommended that children 13 and younger participate in the event at Vista Park, as the Laurel Street clean-up involves walking downtown near busy streets. Light refreshments will be provided. This third annual Earth Day event is a great way for the community to be a part of on-going efforts to increase sustainability while keeping our City clean and beautiful.

Advanced registration is required. Participants must register by Friday, March 30. To register: Form/Form/. ■

City of Oakland launches free tools to help business owners with permit requirements, location-based zoning research THE City of Oakland has launched two free online tools to simplify the process for opening a business: Oakland’s own Zoning Check ( and Business Permitting tool (businesspermits.oaklandca. gov). Through a series of easyto-answer questions, these apps quickly inform entrepreneurs whether their business venture is allowable at a particular location, what types of City licenses and permits are required, and how much the related fees will be. With these online tools, reliable information is now available 24/7 and accessible from any Internet-enabled device including smartphones. The two apps are available in English, Chinese and Spanish. “Those looking to invest in Oakland now have a one-stop source for policies and regulations from our Planning, Building, Zoning, Fire, and Revenue divisions, all in one place,” said Mark Sawicki, Director of the Economic & Workforce Development Department. “Research shrinks to a few minutes, allowing for agile decision-making and business planning.” “As a small business owner, this new platform to help pre-determine your permits and costs is a game-changer,” said Miz Chris


(aka Christine De La Rosa), coowner of Craft & Spoon, Town Biz, Queen of Hearts Art Gallery, and Benefit Health Collective. “When I opened my first small business in Oakland in 2013, many roadblocks I encountered had to do with permitting and my lack of knowledge about them. Having a program like this five years ago would have shortened my timeline considerably. I am excited for our future small business owners to use this program for their entrepreneurial endeavors.” The two new online tools advance the objectives outlined in the City’s Economic Development Strategy that was adopted by the City Council in November 2017. The strategy outlines steps to make Oakland an an easy, efficient, and prosperous place to do business, while finding ways to give marginalized businesses and residents the tools and access they need to thrive now. “I’ve used both sites and they’ve already provided a great assist in helping identify appropriate buildings for my clients efficiently and expeditiously,” said Kristi Childers, broker with Jones Lang LaSalle Brokerage, Inc. The City’s Economic & Workforce Development Department spearheaded development of

these online tools in partnership with OpenCounter, a platform that was piloted through a Code for America fellowship in the City of Santa Cruz, California and has been supported by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Initial development of the two apps was supported through a $50,000 grant from the U.S. Small Business Administration. Oakland was one of 28 cities to receive the SBA’s “Startup in a Day” grant funding to launch tools that enable entrepreneurs to obtain all the permits they need to open a business in a single day. With exceptional transit options, a diverse population, access to a skilled workforce, a high quality of life, and affordable costs relative to the Bay Area’s other large cities, Oakland is the smart choice for entrepreneurs and business owners needing a strategic location minutes from San Francisco and Silicon Valley. Online tools to speed research and permitting make it even easier to startup and thrive here. In a recent post, Riley McDermid, digital producer for the San Francisco Business Times, wrote, “Oakland remains one of the Bay Area’s largest and most reliable locations for economic growth...” ■


THE County of San Mateo’s Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) Program is hosting a drop-off event in Daly City on Saturday, March 10, from 8:30 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. To participate, you must schedule an appointment at San Mateo County’s HHW Program:, or by calling (650) 363-4718, select option 3. The event location will be disclosed once your appointment has been confirmed. Limit 10 gallons or 50 pounds per appointment. Residents unable to attend this manent HHW facility Thursdays- appointment at event can still dispose of HHW for Saturdays (except major holiday hhw or call (650) 363-4718, sefree at San Mateo County’s per- weekends). You must make an lect option 3.

BPO sector calls on DTI... PAGE CJ1 t

can continue telling them that investing in the country will make you more profitable or make your business grow compared to other locations. These are investors that look for the best location… we should be able to present ourselves as the best location in the meantime that we are trying to improve all of the areas that make us at par with other coun-

tries,” Ilagan said. PAMURI, a subsector of the BPO industry, earlier opposed the removal of the preferential tax rate for multinational companies’ regional operating headquarters (ROHQs) under the already approved first package of the tax reform program. The group said some four to five ROHQs have “refused to enter the Philippine market due to

the threat of removal of the said incentives.” “They are supposed to come in, but because the incentives changed, they might not go in. But aside from that, those who are already here that have plans of growing, they will not expand anymore because their principals will find it better for them to direct the jobs to their other centers,” Ilagan said. ■

DOE seeks more partners for... PAGE CJ1 t

transport as well as in private use,” DOE Secretary Alfonso Cusi said. In putting up charging stations, the energy chief said the country’s two largest oil companies have expressed interest to incorporate charging stations in their respective retail networks. “Shell already committed, Petron also…they are very interested,” Cusi said, noting that the rollout of charging stations is just awaiting a formal timeline for the project. Last year, the DOE formed an Ad-Hoc Technical Working Group (TWG) to determine the suitability of gasoline stations, and possibly in parking areas of malls, for charging stations in preparation for a wider adoption of e-vehicles in the country. The lack of charging stations

in localities have been one the main issues e-vehicle players have raised in pushing for developments in the industry. In partnership with the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the DOE is rolling out 3,000 electric tricycles (e-trikes) – which was stalled due to the steep prices of units – by the middle of this year. BEMAC Electric Transportation Philippines Inc. bagged the $30-million contract in 2016 to produce 3,000 e-trikes but these units have remained in the manufacturer’s warehouse because there are no takers from local government units (LGUs) due to the steep cost – at P450,000 per unit. The Philippine government has then worked with the ADB to modify the e-trike deployment, restricting it only for LGU distri-


bution. Of the total number of e-trikes, the DOE deployed 200 units to Marawi City. Apart from Marawi City, Cusi said the agency is also looking to donate the rest of the e-trike units to the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Philippine National Police (PNP) and other eligible local government units (LGUs). Eligible LGUs include those that have been hit by natural or man-made disasters; those that have historical and/or tourism significance; those that have existing ordinances supporting electric vehicles; those that have existing electric vehicles in their locality; those with poor air quality due to tricycle emissions; and those that will facilitate the set up of charging infrastructure and demonstrated plan to support the project. ■

(650) 689-5160 •




MARCH 2-8, 2018 • NORCAL ASIAN JOURNAL • (650) 689-5160

Friday, March 2, 2018


cover story The Asian Jour nal SF MAGAZINE - March 2, 2018

Ana Julaton: Fighting standards in the ring and cage by Rae ann VaRona / AJPress For many, combat sports may be described as being drenched machismo — blood, sweat, hard-hitting punches, and low-pitch announcer voices are all part of the image. But that description probably won’t fly for Fil-Am professional fighter Ana Bonifacio Julaton who is holding it down in the maledominated sports. Among other world titles, Julaton was the first to win the Women’s World Boxing organization (WBo) Super Bantamweight where she insisted she gets the same winning red belt instead of the pink one meant for female boxers. “The original belt for women was very gender profiled meaning the belt was much smaller and it was pink,” Julaton told the Asian Journal. She called the pioneering win surreal, but quickly highlighted the fact that women’s boxing has been around for a very long time yet continues to fail in getting the same acknowledgment men’s boxing has. “It’s been around for a very long time, but you’re telling me it’s not only until now that these organizations are starting to recognize women?” said Julaton. In the United States, the first women to have had the first “official” female boxing match were Nell Saunders and rose Harland at the New York Hills Theater in 1876 at which Saunders fought out Harland not for a trophy or belt, but for a silver butter dish. Having hit the mainstream, both men’s and women’s boxing were introduced to the olympics in 1904, but only men’s boxing got accepted leaving female boxers behind struggling to get the same recognition. It wasn’t until over a century later in 2009 did the Internation-

al olympic Committee vote to lift the ban on women’s boxing, having the women’s event debut in 2012 for the first time since the games began. For the three world titleholder who was an advocate for lifting the olympic ban, boxing wasn’t something she initially saw herself getting into. Having been a martial arts teacher, it was something she learned in order to teach. “It’s been a journey. It’s something we didn’t anticipate but it’s something that kind of organically happened,” said the 37-year-old fighter. At her first ever bout at the San Francisco Golden Gloves, where she competed after just a couple weeks of training, she took home the silver which encouraged her to see how far she would go. She went far, training under under big names like Freddie roach, Nonito Donaire Sr., roger Mayweather, and now Angelo reyes — all especially familiar to the Filipino boxing community. But Julaton doesn’t only throw punches. She also elbows, knees, kicks, wrestles, grapples, and pins her opponents down as one of the few boxers to also take on mixed martial arts where she sees big opportunities for female fighters. Double boxing and MMA pursuit It was a family thing, said Julaton, who has black belts in a number of martial art sports. one of her very first memories was learning basic martial arts moves from her dad. More formal training came as soon as her younger brother was potty trained. “It kind of just took off from there. It was something that I

loved right away,” she said as she recalled looking up to the few Asians in media like Bruce Lee and Dan Inosanto who worked with Lee and was also Filipino. “Just being able to see figures like that growing up as a child — it helped shape and hone me to what I am today,” said Julaton. While MMA as it’s known today is relatively new, women’s participation in MMA is even newer and Julaton sees the cage as untapped territory for female fighters and boxers such as herself. Julaton made her successful MMA debut for the oNE Championship organization in 2014 where she beat out Aya-Saeid Saber via technical knockout in the third round. That same year, she defeated Egypt’s Walaa Abbas at the Mall of Asia Arena in the Philippines. Now, she fights under American MMA organization Bellator which many see as being a rival to other American MMA organization Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). While other organizations require fighters to stay exclusive with them, Bellator allows Julaton to box while still pursuing MMA. “As a fighter, it’s nice to actually have direction and have control of my career versus getting locked up and kind of feeling like I’m getting lost in the shuffle with other organizations. There’s a lot more opportunity with this,” she said. The crossover between boxing and MMA is something that has been sprouting among mostly male fighters. Just last year, the big ticket fight between boxer Floyd Mayweather and MMA fighter Conor McGregor caused a frenzy as fans from both sports made bets on who would take the win. Mayweather just recently pulled out of negotiations for a rematch in the MMA cage. To spectators, the event might have looked like a simple crossover of two athletes, but as actual boxer-turned-

MMA fighters like Julaton would say, it doesn’t quite work that way. “It’s almost like trying to play football and basketball at the same time,” Julaton said. “They’re two completely different sports.” In boxing, you have the boxing shoes while in MMA, you fight barefoot. Getting accustomed to different glove weights is just another small difference fighters would have to master. Then there are the rules and tactics. But even those challenges aren’t at the top for Julaton. On added challenges on the most challenging experiences Julaton faced during her journey she said, “I would definitely say facing social issues” — referring to her experiences being not only a woman in the male-dominated sports, but a Filipina. “You have to be fierce,” said Julaton. “A lot of people are always sizing you up, they look at you like you’re new meat. It’s like wolves upon wolves. You have to have that dynamic within you in order for you to survive in training.” Like in many areas, women and women of color have experienced having to push extra hard to get their deserved recognition.



This has true for Julaton who has often found her accomplishments overlooked. “I mean right now, what I think is very interesting is that they’ll highlight my opponent a lot more than they’ll talk about me,” said Julaton. Despite her world titles and having worked with some of the best names in the industry, Julaton has many times found herself cut short from being dubbed the “next big thing” while opponents with fewer accomplishments have. Her nickname — “The Hurricane” — for example, didn’t stem up from her quickness as others would say, although it would make sense. Instead it was created to help announcers and reporters remember how to pronounce her last name correctly after a well-known announcer butchered it despite having been in the industry for a long time. “I’ve been fighting for over 10 years and there’s a lot of these big media writers, especially in North America, and they’re being paid to be a reporter and they can’t get my name right?” said Julaton. “That’s the only reason why,” she added. “Because people don’t want to spend that little effort, it becomes too much work so to speak, for them to try and say someone’s name when you want to try to give them respect.” But fighting is what Julaton does, and she gives partial credit to her Filipino blood.


“I’ll tell you what — I think fighting is all in our blood,” she said laughing. “It doesn’t necessarily have to come with lacing up some gloves — it’s through adversity. Time and time again, with all the stories, with all the struggles we have all experienced as people all throughout the world. You know, we work hard and we always fight through adversity.” Julaton’s latest fight on Friday, February 16 MMA against American fighter Heather Hardy — who followed Julaton’s footsteps into the MMA cage from boxing — was nothing short of unsparing competitiveness. The months leading up to the fight were hyped as the two threw threats and expletives at each other, as fighters typically do. NBA Champion ronny Turiaf was also present as one of her MMA coaches — he was also present at her debut fight in 2014. Hardy ended up taking a win, not through knockouts, but via unanimous decision in a fight that left many MMA fans unsatisfied. The two will next face each other in the boxing ring as part of the two-sport deal. But as Julaton said prior to the fight, as challenging as fighting is, it’s also the most fun. It’s everything else that is complicated. “This is something I want to explore, that I committed myself to — this is my career,” said Julaton.

Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla on being Yasmien: HIV not something to joke about role models, young achievers and in love by Bot


by Iza IglesIas

IT’S hard enough just to be a good actor but a high pressured career is enough to push anyone over the edge at times. And with


social media now part of daily life, anyone can easily praise, criticize and judge a celebrity at the drop of a hat. No one knows this reality better than the teenage tandem

that grew up—and fell in love for real—in front of the public eye. Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla, more popularly known by the portmanteau KathNiel, have learned to watch their every step because they know that with their fame comes the responsibility of influencing a generation of fans for the good. This is not to say KathNiel is a pair of goody-goodies. To be sure they have found themselves the topic of showbiz gossip, bashing and the like. Amid all these, however, they strive hard to be image-conscious for their families, their fans and themselves. “We’d like to think we were both raised well. We are the product of our parents who taught us what’s right and wrong, and in our position, we know what we need to show the public who look up to us. We know we have to do our best to become good role models of the youth,” Padilla said at the thanksgiving press conference for his and Continued on Page SF3 ABS-CBNphoto

GMA 7 is airing its first advoca-serye on human immunodeficiency virus or HIV titled “Hindi Ko Kayang Iwan Ka,” in the afternoon prime block. The series aims to disseminate information and at the same time correct a number of public misconceptions about the disease. Lead star Yasmien Kurdi does not only promise to eloquently portray her character Thea Balagtas, who is infected with HIV, but also commits herself to speak out for people living with HIV who have lost courage and confidence to voice out their concerns. “Yes, it will now be my personal advocacy to inform people about HIV,” began Yasmien about learning and understanding more about the disease. “And to think that we are just in the beginning of tackling it through the show. I hope to learn more as we go along.” Yasmien never denied having known a number of


individuals who have been diagnosed with HIV. “Sa mga artista, wala pero sa ibang mga staff like nawala si ganito kasi di agad nila na-treat o di agad nakontrol kaya bumagsak ang resistensya so it is necessary that when you have HIV, you have to stay healthy and never forget to take vitamins and medications.” others, she added, are too


shy to see a doctor to have them checked. “I think, there are also several apps (on the Net) which you can visit to get information on the case and how to properly manage the everyday life. It is also good that the government is providing free medications.” Asked what she could say to those who turn the issue into Continued on Page SF4

features SF3 Lombard by The Bay: Where your new home also opens opportunities H Mart announces grand opening of San Jose-Oakland location on March 8 The Asian Jour nal SF MAGAZINE – March 2, 2018

FOR Susan Gross-Niedermeyer, a realtor in Phoenix, Arizona since 1989, there is no better place to be a resident, tourist, pilgrim, visitor, or investor than at Lombard By The Bay. “Lombard By The Bay is in Montemaria where natural beauty is beyond compare,” she answered when asked why she bought a penthouse unit with the property development. “It’s the perfect place to connect with God through prayers. It’s a holy ground where the mother of love peace and joy appeared to Emma De Guzman, a Filipina visionary and mystic every year on September 8 and December 8!” With this statement, GrossNiedermeyer excitedly shared that people should see the miraculous photo taken by a pilgrim in 2016, as well as an image of the dancing sun taken in 2017. Gross-Niedermeyer also added that, “There are countless of benefits of owning a unit at Lombard By The Bay. Aside from its perfect location, Lombard By The Bay is gated and secure. It is also going to have its own state-of-theart clubhouse that includes a fitness center, spa, swimming pool, restaurants, and gift shop.” With its many amenities,

Lombard By The Bay aims to provide the most fulfilling experience for its residents and guests. It is a two-hour drive from Manila situated on a plateau overlooking the Verde Island Passage, which is considered the center of marine biodiversity of the world. It is also in close proximity to the tallest statue of Virgin Mary, Mother of All Asia, towering at 317 ft. “I would recommend Lombard By The Bay for many reasons. Whether you’re a pilgrim, resident, tourist, or investor, you simply cannot go wrong [with this investment],” Gross-Niedermeyer said. “Lombard By The Bay is a sure winner; most units have the view of the Batangas bay, and cost between $50,000 to $80,000 which can be rented out for $50 to $70 a night.” She continued that Montemaria was also just added to the list of ‘Must See’ in the Philippine Department of Tourism project called Love of Country. The project will have its much-anticipated road tour in the U.S. starting in April to promote the project. “On June

H MART, a leading International supermarket chain has Arizona-based realtor Susan Gross-Niedermeyer made a final announcement of 3, 2018, there will be a float H Mart San Jose-Oakland Grand with a 6-foot replica of Mother Opening and is set to open its of All Asia Monte Maria in New doors at 10:30 a.m. on ThursYork City during the annual day, March 88, 2018. Philippine Independence Day H Mart San Jose-Oakland parade sponsored by 200 orga- has over 42,000 square feet nizations belonging to the Phil. of retail price and the store is located in an area of a large Independence Day council,” Asian population that is exshe said. pected to develop as a broad The 2.1-hectare developscale commercial district. By ment is a joint venture between Premier Asia Pacific Real delivering products directly from H Mart CA Warehouse, Estate and Development, Inc. H Mart San Jose-Oakland will and Omnicor Industrial Estate retain and elevate its freshness & Realty Center, Inc. to meet customers’ needs. Premier Asia Pacific Real EsA number of community tate and Development believes leaders and representatives are in the economic development set to participate and celebrate of the Philippines and caters to the Grand Opening. The Grand the needs of developers and Opening will feature a Ribbon buyers looking to expand their Cutting Ceremony followed by property and investment portcultural performances. folio. Premier Asia Pacific’s misH Mart is an upscale susion is to reconnect overseas permarket with more than 90 Filipinos back their roots by stores in the U.S. nationwide. offering a complete package of It serves both traditional Asian real estate investment services and international food, with fresh produce, meat, poultry, in the Motherland. and fishery. H Mart is also To get more information known as the ‘One-Stop Shopabout the project, you may ping’ place for all shoppers call Susan Gross-Niedermeyer of different ethnicities, backat (480) 227-7782 or email grounds and ages. at susan@susangrossrealtor. “I’d like to thank H Mart for com. their investment in our com(AdvertisingSupplement) munity, and welcome H Mart to San Jose’s diverse and delicious international food scene,” said San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo. “Stores like H Mart reflect our city’s unique multicultural appeal, and help make our city a welcoming place for everyone

Richard-Sarah wedding to push through, just not how they want it to RICHARD Gutierrez and Sarah Lahbati’s big day is coming closer as Lahbati is due to give birth “anytime.” Gutierrez said on the talk show “Tonight with Boy Abunda” that the actress is on her “last month of pregnancy.” He said pregnancy was easier for her the second time around. The two actors have a four-year-old son named Zion. They have also been planning their wedding after five years as a couple. It appears they’ll be having a large wedding, as per their parents’ requests. “Siyempre, yung parents namin ni Sarah they’re very traditional Filipino, especially our moms. Gusto nila dito sa PilipiContinued on Page SF4

Sarah Lahbati, Richard Gutierrez and their son Zion.

Photos courtesy of Nice Print Photography

Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla...

From Page SF2 Bernardo’s ABS-CBN prime time “La Luna Sangre,” which is now on its final week run. What’s real It can be recalled that Padilla and Bernardo were first paired in 2012’s teen drama series, “Princess and I.” Since then, they were cast in one project after another—both for the small and big screens—drawing them closer and closer, until they admitted to be “exclusively dating” in 2016. As a real couple who need to put their best foot forward in public appearances, KathNiel nonetheless never held back in showing their affection for one another. They do not see anything wrong with PDA, the acronym for “Public Dispay of Affection,” and Bernardo explained why: “I can hug him in front of you [and if you’re uncomfortable about it] that’s not our problem because what we promise our fans is that we will always be real in front of them.” For the young actress, beyond what the public sees in their interviews and movies is a more significant message to the youth. “At a young age, we know the value of hard work and because of it, we can already support our families. So beyond our relationship on and off camera, there are things we’re able to achieve, and we do all that by being real.” What’s love In doing “La Luna Sangre,”

Bernardo said she further realized that there can be no other reality as powerful as love. “Those who watch the show will know that character Malia and Daniel’s role as Tristan have faced so many challenges together. But at the end of the day, whether a person turns ‘bad’ because of situations, they can change because of love.” Speaking as one half of KathNiel again, she deduced, “That’s something I also want to go by in real life. Just like any relationship, Malia and Tristan’s journey isn’t easy, and in real life, we all face challenges too. But if we face them hand in hand, we can get through them, with love.” What’s next According to the reel and real-life couple, the final week of “La Luna Sangre,” which went into high gear this week, will show tensions rise, especially after the leader of the evil vampires Sandrino (Richard Gutierrez) discovers his brother Tristan had betrayed him and sided with Malia over love. As a couple, Malia and Tristan will fight for peace as Sandrino does everything in his power to fill the world with the darkness of his absolute rule. With the show coming to an end, KathNiel admit they have mixed feelings over what has been a very enriching experience in their careers. “First of all, it was hard for me to do ‘La Luna’ because I

had to make big adjustments to portray Malia,” she said of what turned out to be not just an emotionally driven role but a physically demanding one as well. “The show was the first time I became really hands on in my role and collaborate with the writers and directors so I definitely learned a lot in ‘La Luna.’” Elaborating, Bernardo went on, “We matured as actors here and we became independent as well. In the past, we were very dependent on our directors for guidance, but with ‘La Luna,’ with multiple units and directors, we have to know what’s happening wherever they throw us to do scenes. “To do a series as big as this takes a lot of team work and thankfully, we became a family here—and I will miss that. I might have sepanx [separation anxiety] because as hard as it’s been to ‘La Luna,’ we all have fun on the set, and never expected the show will run as long as 10 months.” On Padilla’s part, he related, “I’m really proud of ‘La Luna’ because this is the first fantaserye (fantasy-based series) Kath and I did. It was a roller coaster ride for sure, but instead of thinking about all the stress we’ve gone through, I choose to think of all the good memories we’ve made on this show. Because definitely, it brought us closer than before. For real!”

to live,” H Mart President Brian Kwon said, “H Mart is very pleased to be involved in the City of San Jose again. As H Mart would like to give special thanks to San Jose-Oakland and the surrounding communities for loving our San Jose-Oakland store, we will prepare hard everyday to serve customers and go beyond any expectations of our opening.” And he added that H Mart San Jose- Oakland will be a new destination where customers can truly enjoy ‘Good for all’ H Mart is a 34-year-old supermarket chain, which started

with its first store in Woodside, NY in 1982, offering robust and unique cultural foods that also promote a rich and healthy lifestyle. Today H Mart operates more than 90 stores in 14 states and is one of the leading international supermarket chains in the United States. In 2014, H Mart was recognized as one of the fastest growing retailers in the National Retail Federation’s HOT 100 RETAILERS (#13 H Mart). In 2016, Supermarket News has listed H Mart as one of the Top 50 Small Chains and Independents in the United States & Canada. 



celebrityworld The Asian Jour nal SF MAGAZINE - March 2, 2018

celebrity world By Ferdie Villar

DAN Duggan, president of Duggan’s Serra Mortuary, heads this year’s list of prominent personalities celebrating their birthdays in the month of March. He celebrates his birthday on Tuesday, March 27. Duggan’s Serra Mortuary, located in Daly City, is known to many residents of the Bay Area as it has helped many Filipino Americans honor and pay their last respects to their loved ones who have departed this world. Other prominent celebrities who are celebrating their birthdays this month are:

Duggan’s Serra Mortuary president Dan Duggan heads list of March birthday celebrants

March 1: Royal Dynasty Foundation founder Nelly Cojuangco Tuazon, Premiere Appliances owner Tony Premiere; March 3: Dr. Tita Martinez Picache of Danville, United Airlines employee Edward Teofilo Cabrera; March 4: Beauteous actress Dawn Zulueta of Star Cinema, Fiesta Filipina Restaurant owner Dorie Guevarra, Pedro (Jonjing) Ejercito de Castro (nephew of Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada); March 6: Isabelle Diaz (daughter of former Miss Universe winner Gloria Diaz),

Gloria Diaz, the first Filipina to win the Miss Universe crown, celebrates her birthday on March 10.

Gerald Anderson, the handsome actor of the Kapamilya Channel, celebrates his birthday on March 7.

Lerma de la Cruz Camiles, Filipina songstress and concert producer, celebrates her birthday on March 31.

United Airlines employee Edward Teofilo Cabrera celebrates his birthday on March 3.

Geoff Eigenmann; March 24: Kapuso actor Aljur Abrenica; March 25: Asian Journal Publications president Cora Macabagdal Oriel, photoman Ray Guarin; March 26: Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, Channel 2 teleserye lead actor Matteo Guidicelli; March 28: Miss Earth Beauty Pageant executive producer

Ramon Monzon; March 30: The late Thomasians USA founder Alice Pena Bulos, SamTrans employee Eugene Cabugao; March 31: Entertainment producer Lerma de la Cruz, GMA Channel 7 actor Benjamin Alvez. all March birthday celebrants, many happy returns of the day! And an advanced Happy Easter to all!

Dan Duggan, president of Duggan’s Serra Mortuary, who celebrates his birthday on Tuesday, March 27, heads this list of prominent celebrities celebrating their birthdays in the month of March.

Beauteous multi-awarded actress Dawn Zulueta celebrates her birthday on March 4.

Retired Navy Captain Jimmy Velasco and his wife, the former Matilda Roldan, are celebrating their birthdays this March — March 17 for Capt. Velasco and March 14 for Mrs. Velasco.

Philippines Today co-publisher Marilyn King Camilosa celebrates her birthday on March 10.

Rey Reyes, Daly City community leader and pioneer of the LuzViMin Association of Northern California, celebrates his birthday on March 18.

actress Gretchen Barretto of Kapamilya Channel 2; March 7: Star Cinema actor Gerald Anderson; March 8: Former senator Ramon Revilla, ABS-CBN Channel 2 actor Archie Almenia; March 9: Veteran actress Rosemarie Gil, Atty. K.J. Petsas, hairstylist Edmond Dizon; March 10: Philippines Today co-publisher Marilyn King Camilosa, Kapamilya actor J.C. de Vera, former Miss Universe Gloria Diaz; March 11: Internationally known singer/songwriter Jose Mari Chan; March 14: Kapuso Channel 7 actor Paolo Contis, Homeland Security officer Ermin Apolinario, former Miss United Nations World winner Natty Averia Mendoza, Pittsburg community

leader Mathie Roldan Velasco; March 16: Pop Diva Kuh Ledesma; March 17: Daly City councilmember Mike Guingona, former Mr. United Nations-USA winner Roberto (Bobby) Tuason, Navy Capt. Jimmy Velasco (Ret.); March 18: Kapuso Channel 7 actress Bianca King, Pioneer of LuzViMin Association of Northern California Rey Reyes; March 19: Kapamilya actress and star of teleserye “Asintado,” Julia Montes; March 20: Batangueños of Northern California best-dressed matron Liza Manalo; March 21: Statewide Realty proprietress Alicia Gabriela Atienza, GMA Channel 7 actor Rocco Nacino; March 23: Party Pilipinas host and Kapuso Channel 7 actor

Angelica Panganiban: The reasons she is the ‘hugot Queen’ of showbiz By Monet


“AYOKO ng meron akong pinagbibigyan ng kalahati ng sarili ko.” (I don’t want to keep giving half of myself to another); “Sa umpisa lang yan mainit, tignan mo sa katagalan magkakalamigan din kayo. Parang kami.” (It’s just warm in the beginning. You’ll later see, it’s going to get ‘cold’ eventually. Just like what happened to me and him) — These are just few of the on-point, deeply-rooted loaded remarks aka “hugot” lines that Angelica Panganiban has said on her comedy sitcom and her Instagram account. Fans and followers are entertained by the actress’s wit and no-holdsbarred-reactions (not to mention, very relatable) that they call her the “Hugot Queen.” Being in the industry for more than 20 years and having won awards, I believe Angelica has proven her worth in show business. It is probably the reason she can get away with her straightforwardness and candid replies without people making a big deal out of it. In fact, it works to her advantage especially that women who were betrayed, brokenhearted or in pain can relate to her. She is, to them, the heroine of the “sawi”. Not to exaggerate but Angge (Angelica’s nickname) did go through a serious amount of heartbreaks in her past relationships. Angelica’s relationships weren’t just the typical “puppy loves” or some “flavors of the month” that come and go. She was in relationships that lasted long and seemed serious at the time. I have to say that she really earned the right to that title based on the pain she endured being in relationships that could have ended up in the altar. The first one on record was with Carlo Aquino who was

Angelica’s best friend-turnedboyfriend of six years. It was even noted in one of Carlo’s recent interviews that if they’d been a few years older then, Angelica could have been “the one” for him. They separated and remained friends over the years. The next relationship, also a long-term one, was with Derek Ramsey. They even had a movie together. It was around 2006 when they met and officially became a couple the following year. They stayed together for six years. In an interview in the April 2013 issue of entertainment magazine Star Studio, Angelica revealed how Derek broke up with her in the midst of an argument they had on the phone. In the years leading up to their separation, the former celebrity couple had to grapple with several problems that later proved difficult to handle. The following day, Angelica moved out her things from the house she had shared with Derek for five years. Then came John Lloyd Cruz who has reportedly fathered the rumored child of sexy actress Ellen Adarna after the highly controversial and publicized bitter separation from Angelica. The ex-couple dated for four years before calling it quits May 2016. When Angelica publicly opened up about her split from John Lloyd, she couldn’t hold back her tears when she was interviewed by Vice Ganda on an episode of “Gandang Gabi Vice.” Angelica admitted that she was struggling in moving on from her relationship with John Lloyd. She revealed that she cried a lot due to heartaches. Some people may view Angelica’s remarks as bitterness or inability to move on. But for me, it’s her way of coping. It’s her way of trying to reassure herself that she is still standing and the pain is just temporary. I’ve seen a lot of celebrity relationships fail but it’s not the same when

Richard-Sarah wedding... From Page SF3 nas. Gusto nila yung traditional na invited lahat, invited yung kamag-anak ng kamag-anak namin so siyempre hindi naman namin matatanggihan yun. Siyempre nirerespeto namin yung gusto ng parents namin. (Of course, both our parents are very traditional Filipino, especially our moms. They want it here in the Philippines. They want it in the traditional way that everyone’s invited, even the relatives of our relatives, so we can’t say no to that. Of course, we’ll respect what our parents want),” he said. However, their own dream wedding would take a different direction. “If we can have it our way, gusto namin sana ni Sarah na mas intimate yung wedding. Gusto sana namin yung close

family and close friends ang kasama namin dun sa special moment namin. (If we can have it our way, we would want a more intimate wedding. We would want close family and close friends with us in our special moment.)” He also disclosed that they have a “shortlist of venues” and that they want a “beach wedding or a mountain wedding.” In the premiere episode of season five of the reality show “It Takes Gutz to Be a Gutierrez”, Lahbati’s condition for a wedding location was “it has to be somewhere cold.” A destination wedding could be fitting as Gutierrez proposed in the mountains of Switzerland last August. (Niña V. Guno/

Yasmien: HIV not something... From Page SF3

Angelica Panganiban

it happens to a believer of longterm relationships. Angelica is obviously a believer of staying faithful. I’m sure she hoped that one of her past relationships could have been for keeps. Angelica deserves to be with the person who stands for the same ideals as she does. One who would fight for her, support her, love her unconditionally, laugh and cry and even exchange ‘hugot’ lines with her when they recall their past relationships. And if there’s one thing that Angelica has, aside from her witty and loaded lines, it is her strength. Not everybody can go through a whole deal of pain and still pick herself up (and pick up some relatable lines in the process). She may be the hugot queen we’ve come to know, but for the right reasons.

She loved. Really loved. Then she lost. But in her loss, we saw her strength and her ability to turn the pain into a legitimate entertainment that many can relate to. To Angelica, I am looking forward to the day when “the One” for you will find you and turn you from a Hugot Queen to his Only Queen. *** Monet Lu is a Marikina-born, award-winning celebrity beauty stylist with his own chain of Monet Salon salons across Southern California and Las Vegas, Nevada. Ultimately, Monet is known as an all-around artiste who produces sold-out fashion and awards shows as well as unforgettable marketing campaigns. Monet is also the founder of the revolutionary allnatural beauty products such as Enlighten, your solution to discoloration. To contact Monet, please visit or email him at

an object of ridicule, Yasmien said, “It’s not something to joke about. I think those who make fun of it know little or nothing about HIV. They may also be too young to understand its impact on the victims.” Yasmien also reminded that HIV can be transmitted from one person to another not only through sexual activity but it may also spread through other ways like sharing needle or syringe use and receiving blood transfusion contaminated with HIV. “It’s not also true that when girls accidentally sit on the toilet bowl with sperm or blood ng may HIV, they will most likely acquire the disease or when you eat a banana contaminated with blood mahahawa ka din, hindi po totoo ‘yun.” That’s why, the Kapuso talent hopes to share more about HIV with televiewers. In the story, Yasmien’s Thea is set to suffer physical, emotional and mental distress upon learning that she is infected with the disease despite her being

a loyal and loving wife to her husband and a good mother to their children. Clueless of how she got infected with HIV, her husband is led to believe that she cheated on him and files for legal separation, taking their kids with him. During the presscon, Yasmien revealed to have personally met the woman who has been suffering in real life her character’s horrible fate. “Yes, she is also married with a child and until now their marriage is intact. This (soap) will help everybody. There’s no cure yet but it will share things on how to take care of your body. Support from family is also important.” She, too, did some research by attending a seminar at the Philippine National AIDS Council (PNAC) and mingling with the HIV-infected people to better understand how they cope with everyday life. “Do not judge too quickly,” said Yasmien to those who have misunderstood the health issue. “Because it would only add much emotional stress.”

The Asian Jour nal SF MAGAZINE - March 2, 2018



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