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Vol. 2. No. 30

LOS ANGELES

A Balita Media Publication

Wednesday - Tuesday, April 10-16, 2013

DFA: No imminent threat in Korean Peninsula MANILA, Apr 8 (Mabuhay) – The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said there is no imminent threat despite the growing tensions in Korea. Assistant Secretary Raul Hernandez, the DFA spokesman said the situation in South Korea, where about 40,000 Filipinos are based, remain normal. “The general situation now in Seoul, in South Korea as a whole, is normal, business as usual and calm,” Hernandez said. Henandez said there are no Filipinos yet who have asked to be repatriated by the embassy. Aside from the Filipinos, there are about 700,000 Chinese nationals, 400,000 Korean-Chinese, 137,000 US nationals, 116,000

Vietnamese and about 60,000 Japanese are in South Korea. “Nobody is leaving and everybody is calm and they believe that there is no imminent threat as far as the situation there is concerned,” he said. He said the DFA is continuously monitoring the situation with international agencies. “The contingency plan is based on intelligence report and we have to do a solid intelligence and assessment of the situation and this is being done by our embassy, in coordination with the UN command, with the South Korean authorities, and also with the US forces. We will not move until we are able to have that solid intelligence report,” See IMMINENT THREAT, page 6

Intrusion of 2 unidentified aircraft highlights need for military upgrade – PHL military MANILA, Apr 8 (Mabuhay) – The overflight by two unidentified aircraft, at high speed and altitude, over Pag-asa Island, highlights the need for the Philippine military to upgrade its equipment and facilities. “(The overflight of two unidentified aircraft) highlights the need of the AFP to upgrade itself so that it can at least have a minimum credible deterrent,” AFP Western

President Benigno S. Aquino III delivers his speech during the World Health Day 2013 at the Conference Hall of the World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Office for the Western Pacific in U.N. Avenue corner Taft Avenue in Manila on Monday (April 08). WHO is the trusted authority in directing and coordinating health issues within the United Nation’s structure. (MNS photo)

Command head Maj. Gen. Rustico Guerrero said. He added he is hoping the ongoing modernization programs of the military will address these needs so that Philippine borders can be protected. Badly needed items by the AFP include “space” (surveillance) radars, modern interceptor aircraft and naval vessels with anti-ship and See UNIDENTIFIED, page 6

Overseas voting for Filipinos in Korea to proceed as scheduled despite tension in peninsula MANILA, Apr 8 (Mabuhay) – Overseas voting for more than 13,000 Filipinos working in South Korea will proceed as scheduled despite escalating tension in the Korean peninsula, the Philippines’ election body said on Monday. However, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has no advice yet regarding its contingency plan in case a war breaks out between the North and South Korea, Commission on Elections (Com-

elec) spokesperson James Jimenez said. “So far, wala pang ganoong advice sa amin, so tuloy lang tayo, magkakaroon ng halalan hanggang hindi nagbabago ang klima doon, we will continue as though everything is okay, and keep coming to carry on that,” Jimenez said. (So far, we will proceed with overseas voting for 13,934 Filipino workers in South Korea as long as the climate stays the same.)

In case the scenario in the Peninsula worsens, he poll body will only follow what the foreign affairs department tells them to do, Jimenez added. “Since the (elections) is only an additional duty imposed on DFA personnel, and if the DFA personnel are told to get out of there, wala na tayong magagawa,” he said. Asked what the Comelec intend to do if the tension get worse, JiSee OVERSEAS VOTING, page 6

Pacquiao ‘wants Macau fight’

President Benigno S. Aquino III tours and inspects the facilities of Austal Philippines Shipyard during the Grand Opening at the Austal Shipyard in West Cebu Industrial Park (WCIP), Barangay Arpili, Balamban, Cebu on Wednesday (January 16, 2013). The US$7-million acquisition of the shipyard enables Austal to establish shipbuilding operations at the WCIP and will invest US$5-million to enhance the shipyard’s existing facilities. For the second year in a row, the entire country was strike-free for the first three months of 2013, said National Conciliation and Mediation Board Executive Director Reynaldo Ubaldo Monday.

PHL strike-free for 1Q of 2013 MANILA, Apr 8 (Mabuhay) – For the second year in a row, the entire country was strike-free for the first three months of 2013, said National Conciliation and Mediation Board Executive Director Reynaldo Ubaldo Monday. In his report to Labor Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz, Ub-

aldo said: “We did this through the provision of timely, efficient, and effective conciliation-mediation services to parties involved in potential or brewing labor disputes.” “Our time tested strategies of 24/7 conciliation and team/buddy conciliation have been effective in See STRIKE-FREE, page 6

Atty. Joel Bander escapes trial; Settlement with State Bar reached BY RHONY LAIGO

See PACQUIAO, page 6

Malaysia holds 32 Filipinos trying to join incursion   KUALA LUMPUR, April 8, 2013 (AFP) – Malaysian security forces on Monday stopped a boat carrying 32 armed Filipinos who were trying to join a two-monthold incursion into the east MalaySee MALAYSIA, page 6

Catholic groups to endorse 6-8 candidates in 2013 polls MANILA, Apr 8 (Mabuhay) – An alliance of Catholic organizations will be endorsing six to eight senatorial candidates in the 2013 elections based on their stand on controversial issues. The coalition, dubbed the “White Vote” movement, was of-

Once again, Atty. Joel Bander will not be tried because a settlement has been reached between him and the State Bar. This became definite after the State Bar cancelled the Joel Bander case that was supposed to begin Monday, April 8, and the court calendar showing that a stipulation – the agreement that enumerates the provisions that Bander will need to comply with – is marked “to be filed.” See BANDER, page 6

MACAU, April 7, 2013 (AFP) – Philippines boxing hero Manny Pacquiao wants his next fight to be in Macau, according to his promoter Bob Arum, who says they are working on an autumn showdown in the casino enclave. Negotiations are ongoing for a September rematch with Juan Manuel Marquez, who knocked Pacquiao out in December, Pacquiao’s spokeswoman Rose Tamayo told AFP earlier this week. Asked late on Saturday at The

Atty. Joel Bander

See CATHOLIC GROUPS, page 6

If all ends well, the world might see another Manny Pacquiao vs. Juan Manuel Marquez (right) event, but this time Pacquaio wants his next fight to be held in Macau.

PHL asking $1.4-M from US for Tubbataha reef damage MANILA, April 6, 2013 (AFP) – The Philippines will ask the United States to pay 58 million pesos ($1.4 million) in compensation for damage caused by a US warship to a protected coral reef, the manager of the reef said Saturday. The amount is based on studies

by Philippine agencies including the coast guard that found the USS Guardian damaged at least 2,345 square meters (25,240 square feet) of the protected Tubbataha reef, park superintendent Angelique Songco said. See TUBBATAHA, page 6 The mine countermeasures ship USS Guardian (MCM 5) sits aground on the Tubbataha Reef when this photo was taken on Jan. 22 before it was later dismantled. The Philippines said it will ask the U.S. to pay $1.4 million in compensation for damage caused by a US warship to a protected coral reef, the manager of the reef said. (U.S. Navy photo by Naval Aircrewman (Tactical Helicopter) 3rd Class Geoffrey Trudell/Released)


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Team PNoy laggards banking on their leader’s Midas touch MANILA, Apr 8 (Mabuhay) – Malacañang is hoping that President Benigno Aquino III’s high satisfaction, trust and approval ratings will be enough to catapult the administration’s senatorial bets to victory in next month’s elections. “So far, and based on the surveys, it’s nine-three,” presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said at a briefing, referring to last Social Weather Station/BusinessWorld survey on senatoriables showing that 12 administration bets made it to the “Magic 12.” “We hope that this trend will continue,” Lacierda said. “Isang buwan na lang ang natitira [bago] eleksyon. Pero nakikita po rito ang kumpyansa po ng ating taumbayan kay Pangulong Aquino.” Based on the results of the SWS survey, which was conducted March 19 to 22, Aquino’s ratings gained by four points to a “very good” net +59, with 74 percent satisfied and 15 percent dissatisfied, while Pulse Asia’s revealed that Aquino’s approval rat-

ing increased from 68 percent in February to 72 percent last month. In a statement, Lacierda credited the Aquino administration’s efforts in delivering basic services as reason for the president’s high ratings. “Massive investments in the people through social services, health, and education; strategic focusing of resources in key sectors such as agriculture, tourism, and infrastructure; and the establishment of a culture of integrity in governance have all redounded to the renewal of the people’s trust in their leaders,” he said. Lacierda also said that progress within the country has been noticed by the international community, citing in particular the country’s recent upgrade to investment grade status by Fitch Ratings — a first in Philippine history. “Such widespread support will be integral as the Aquino administration pushes for more reforms, which will allow us to take greater strides along the straight path to equitable progress,” he said. (MNS)

President Benigno S. Aquino 111 greets paternal cousin and senatorial bet Benigno Aquino IV during the PNoy Team’s campaign swing in vote-rich Laguna’s Calamba City and the capital town of Santa Cruz Friday while fellow senatorial bet Jamby Madrigal looks on. (MNS photo)

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MANILA, Apr 8 (Mabuhay) – Bureau of Customs chief Rozzano Rufino “Ruffy” Biazon does not see any reason to resign amid calls from groups for his alleged failure to curb smuggling. “I don’t see any basis. I’ll just continue with my job. And if President Benigno Aquino III still has confidence in me, then that’s good,” he said. Biazon had just arrived from Panama, where he was invited by the Asian Development Bank and the World Customs Organization to talk about the successes of his agency. “They’ll be in a better position if we really are deep-rooted in smuggling.” He said he has to face reality that there are destabilization moves against him, and which will also benefit some sectors. Abono party-list chairman Rosendo So alleged yesterday that the country has become the “smuggling capital of Asia” and said Biazon should resign from office. He said the total volume of smuggled agricultural products amounted to P32 billion in 2012. Biazon, however, said agriculture stakeholders should sit down with the agency in order to address their concerns. He said the BOC has already invited So for a dialogue but the party-list chairman has not taken up the invitation. He said So, who also heads the Swine Development Council, uses a simplistic computation to arrive at a certain number. “For example, what they do is to subtract the export of China minus

the import to the Philippines equals smuggling. It’s not as simple as that,” he said. Watchdog Malacañang also earlier said there are now talks between Aquino and Sen. Panfilo Lacson about a watchdog to combat oil smuggling. Lacson is supposed to head the still to be formed agency once he leaves the Senate. Lacson immediately called in, however, dismissing rumors he will replace Biazon as BOC chief. The outgoing senator said he is not interested in the BOC. The allegations of the agriculture industry came on the heels of complaints from the oil industry. “The agenda for today is to talk to [Petron Corp. Chairman and Chief Executive Ramon S. Ang],” Biazon said. In an interview with a daily broadsheet, Ang said the country loses P30 billion to P40 billion in forgone revenues per year because of oil smuggling. Biazon said he will have to talk to Ang to confirm a message he received that the interview was not a recent one. In that interview, Ang cited 2007 to 2011 figures. Biazon came in late in 2011. Nonetheless, Biazon said he will welcome the creation of a watchdog. Malacanang also earlier gave its support to Biazon. “If there is evidence, and there are reports, we eventually conduct an investigation. In the BOC (Bureau of Customs), Commissioner Biazon is color-blind to whether you’re a big player or small player. If you’re involved in smuggling, we will investigate you,” presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said last week. (MNS)

Ex-detainee Bro. Eddie asks AFP: Stop protecting officers, men in Burgos abduction MANILA, Apr 8 (Mabuhay) – Bangon Pilipinas lone senatorial candidate Eddie Villanueva, detained several years by the Marcos regime, has added his voice to calls for a final resolution of the six-year-old case of the missing activist Jonas Burgos, recently tagged by the Court of Appeals as the victim of an enforced disappearance by the Army. Villanueva urged the military leadership to stop “protecting its soldiers” who have been proven by the CA as responsible for seizing Burgos, who was dragged away as he lunched at a Quezon City mall on April 28, 2007. In a statement, Villanueva said, “As a former political detainee during the Martial Law years, I have seen and experienced first-hand the heavy handed treatment of the military against political dissidents. It’s time that the AFP stop coddling their people.” The CA’s ruling, promulgated March 18 but reported last March 27, held the AFP accountable for his abduction, and the Philippine National Police for botching its investigation of the case. It urged the incumbent chiefs of both AFP and PNP, though they are not involved in the case, to cooperate with authorities in ensuring the prosecution of the culprits, whom Jonas’ mother Edita said allegedly belonged to a special intelligence unit of the Army in Central Luzon. The CA ruling in the Burgos case, said Villanueva, “only proves that the practice by military units of committing enforced disappearances against legitimate activists continues to this day – decades after democracy has been restored in the country.” Villanueva challenged the Armed Forces to “substantiate its pronouncements that it condemns violations of individuals’ basic and

constitutional rights by allowing its officers and men to fully subject themselves to police investigators and the courts and subsequently face the legal verdict. He said if the AFP lifts its veil of protection on the officers and men who were proven in court to be responsible for the disappearance of Jonas Burgos, “this will be a positive move towards depoliticizing the military and transforming the institution into one that truly serves and protects the people.” Before his abduction in April 2007, Jonas, a Bulakenyo like Villanueva, managed the family farm in Bulacan. He is also a member of the Alyansa ng Magsasaka sa Bulacan, a chapter of the militant group Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas. In its March 18 ruling, the CA recognized Burgos’ abduction as an enforced disappearance and the Philippine Army and Maj. Harry Baliaga Jr. in particular responsible for the disappearance. The court also directed the Philippine National Police to conduct “an exhaustive investigation of the enforced disappearance.” Following the CA’s promulgation of its ruling, Edita Burgos – Jonas’ mother – filed a petition before the Supreme Court to allow the CA to investigate further into the case, on the basis of “newly discovered evidence” that she submitted under seal to the high tribunal. She, however, indicated in her petition that among the new evidence is a post-apprehension report on file with the Army. Interaksyon.com also posted an alleged mug shot of Jonas, apparently taken when he was in custody, showing him looking forlorn and shaken. Edita confirmed he was wearing the same shirt in the photo when she last saw him.


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US delays missile test over N. Korea tensions: official WASHINGTON, April 6, 2013 (AFP) – The Pentagon has delayed an intercontinental ballistic missile test due to take place in California next week amid soaring nuclear tensions with North Korea, an official said Saturday. The defense official told AFP that Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel rescheduled the Minuteman 3 test at Vandenberg Air Force Base for some time next month due to concerns the launch “might be misconstrued by some as suggesting that we were intending to exacerbate the current crisis with North Korea.” “We wanted to avoid that misperception or manipulation,” the US official added. “We are committed to testing our ICBMs to ensure a safe, secure, effective nuclear arsenal.” North Korea, incensed by UN sanctions and South Korea-US military drills, has issued a series of apocalyptic threats of nuclear war in recent weeks. The Pentagon’s announcement followed reports that the North had loaded two intermediate-range missiles on mobile launchers and hidden them in underground facilities near its east coast. They were reported to be untested Musudan mis-

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siles which are believed to have a range of around 1,860 miles (3,000 kilometers) that could theoretically be pushed to 2,485 miles with a light payload. That would cover any target in South Korea and Japan, and possibly even reach US military bases located on the Pacific island of Guam. The North has no proven inter-continental ballistic missile capability that would enable it to strike more distant US targets, and many experts say it is unlikely it can even mount a nuclear warhead on a mid-range missile. Nevertheless, the international community is becoming increasingly skittish that, with tensions showing no sign of de-escalating, there is a real risk of the situation spiraling out of control. The latest crisis erupted when North Korea fired a long-range rocket in December that could theoretically reach the continental United States, but instead splashed down near the Philippines. The North later carried out its third nuclear test in February, defying even its main ally China. The UN Security Council on March 7 unanimously approved new sanctions that include greater scrutiny of shady financial dealings by the impoverished regime.

Virgin best, United worst in US airline WASHINGTON, April 8, 2013 (AFP) – Virgin America came out best and United Airlines the worst in a survey of US airline performance released Monday that showed passenger bumping and complaints soared last year. The annual Airline Quality Rating (AQR) study by researchers at Purdue and Wichita State universities said that the industry’s overall on-time arrival improved in 2012. In addition, less luggage was being lost or damaged than before. “Passengers are experiencing better performance by the airlines, although it might cost more to fly,” the authors said in a statement. But, with airlines striving to pack their aircraft more fully, the number of ticketholders being “denied boarding” – bumped from a flight because seats were unavailable – was up 24 percent, to nearly one in every 10,000 passengers, they said. And complaints to the US Department of Transportation about airlines were up 20 percent to 1.43 per every 100,000 passengers, with industry giant United Airlines by far the worst, garnering 4.24 complaints per 100,000 passengers. Overall performance in the AQR was the secondbest in the 23 years of the survey, slightly below 2011.

That reflected “commendable efforts by the industry to serve customers” in a system strained by capacity limits, said Dean Headley, associate professor of marketing at Wichita State University and co-author of the report. On average, flights arrived on time 81.8 percent of the time, compared with 80.0 percent in 2011. Virgin America, included in the AQR for the first time, topped the 2012 performance rankings for 14 airlines based on a combination of its scores in arrival times, lost baggage, bumpings and complaints. Runner-up was JetBlue, while Air Tran, the number one in 2011, slipped to number-three position. At the bottom were SkyWest, ExpressJet and United, the country’s largest airline since it merged with Continental Airlines in 2010. With the merger of American Airlines and US Airways announced last month, the authors warned that more consolidation in the industry could lead to worse performance rather than better. “Past AQR data suggests that the combining of two large air carrier operations often results in subsequent decreases in AQR rankings,” said Brent Bowen, head of the Department of Aviation Technology at Purdue University and study co-author.

Fasten seatbelts for bumpier flights: climate study PARIS, April 08, 2013 (AFP) – Flights will become bumpier as global warming destabilises air currents at altitudes used by commercial airliners, climate scientists warned Monday. Already, atmospheric turbulence injures hundreds of airline passengers each year, sometimes fatally, damaging aircraft and costing the industry an estimated $150 million (115 million euros), scientists said. “Climate change is not just warming the Earth’s surface, it is also changing the atmospheric winds ten kilometers (six miles) high, where planes fly,” said study co-author Paul Williams of the University of Reading’s National Centre for Atmospheric Science in southeastern England. “That is making the atmosphere more vulnerable to the instability that creates clear-air turbulence,” he told AFP by email. “Our research suggests that we’ll be seeing the ‘fasten seatbelts’ sign turned on more often in the decades ahead.” Turbulence is mainly caused by vertical airflow – up-draughts and down-draughts near clouds and thunderstorms. Clear-air turbulence, which is not visible to the naked eye and cannot be picked up by satellite or traditional radar, is linked to atmospheric jet streams, which are projected to strengthen with climate change. The study authors used supercomputer simulations of the North Atlantic jet stream, a strong upperatmospheric wind driven by temperature differences between colliding Arctic and tropical air. The jet stream affects traffic in

the aviation corridor between Europe and North America – one of the world’s busiest with about 300 eastbound and 300 westbound flights per day. They found that a doubling of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere from pre-industrial levels, predicted within 40 years, would cause turbulence to be 1040 percent more forceful at typical cruise altitudes. “Turbulence strong enough to make walking difficult and to dislodge unsecured objects is likely to become twice as common in transatlantic airspace by the middle of this century,” said Williams. “As well as making flights bumpier and less comfortable, this could also increase the risk of injury to passengers and crew” – especially in winter when Northern Hemisphere clear-air turbulence is thought to be most intense. Williams said CO2 causes non-uniform warming, which increases the jet stream winds. “A stronger jet stream means the atmosphere is less stable, which creates more turbulence,” he explained. The study, published in the journal Nature Climate Change, said planes already spent about one percent of their cruise time in strong clear-air turbulence. Frequent flyers have reported bumpiness to be on the rise, but this is the first study to actually measure the projected impact of climate change, said the authors. “Flight paths may need to become more convoluted to avoid patches of turbulence that are stronger and more frequent, in

which journey times will lengthen and fuel consumption and emissions will increase,” they wrote. “Aviation is partly responsible for changing the climate in the first place,” added Williams. “It is ironic that the climate looks set to exact its revenge by creating a more turbulent atmosphere for flying.”

Miriam fears she may have leukemia MANILA, Apr 9 (Mabuhay) – Sen. Miriam DefensorSantiago plans to go the United States for treatment because of her worsening health condition caused by a bone marrow disease. In an interview with reporters on Tuesday after delivering a commencement speech at the Philippine International Convention Center, Santiago said she fears her bone marrow disorder may turn into leukemia. She explained that she has all the symptoms of anemia because her bone marrow is not producing enough red blood cells. “Apparently no one knows how to treat it, and it will probably retrogress into leukemia. That’s why I have no strength. You will notice that I have run out of breath and that I can hardly walk,” the usually feisty senator told reporters. “I’m going to be physically imbecilic very soon,” she said. Santiago said she will schedule a trip to the US for treatment after consulting with all her doctors in the Philippines. She wants to do it before the International Criminal Court calls her for duty in the Netherlands. “I’m facing the possibility of cancer in my future, that’s why I take this seriously,” she said.

A Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system like the one shown in photo when Lockheed Martin officially rolled out the missile-interceptor battery in Camden, Arkansas, will be sent to protect bases on Guam, a U.S. territory some 3,380 kilometers (2,100 miles) southeast of North Korea and home to 6,000 American military personnel. (Photo: Lockheed Martin)

Taiwan plans to expand pier in disputed islands TAIPEI, April 7, 2013 (AFP) – Taiwan plans to expand a pier on one of the disputed Spratly islands, officials said Sunday, as the rest of the claimants beef up military deployment in the South China Sea. The Coast Guard Administration has budgeted Tw$19 million ($640,000) to evaluate the project, which is part of its efforts to boost defence capabilities in the disputed area this year. “The fund will mainly be used to do an environmental impact study near Taiping Island,” a coast guard official told AFP. The fortified island, under Taiwan’s control, is the largest in the disputed South China Sea area. The United Evening News said the expanded pier would allow port calls by the coast guard’s 2,000-tonne frigates. The current pier provides facilities only to small patrol boats. Taiwan built a 1,150-metre (3,800foot) runway on Taiping in mid-

2006, despite protests from the other countries with claims to the disputed island group. Taiwan, Vietnam, Brunei, China, Malaysia, and the Philippines claim all or part of the potentially oil-rich Spratlys. All claimants except Brunei have troops based on the archipelago of more than 100 islets, reefs and atolls, which have a total land mass of less than five square kilometers (two square miles). The potentially resource-rich sea, home to important trade routes, is a potential military flashpoint and there has been a string of diplomatic rows between countries with overlapping territorial claims in recent years. The Philippines and Vietnam have complained that China is becoming increasingly aggressive in its actions in the area – such as harassing fishermen – and also through bullying diplomatic tactics.

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WHO citation is testament to the strength of a people working towards change: Aquino MANILA, Apr 8 (Mabuhay) – President Benigno S. Aquino III said on Monday that the honor bestowed by the World Health Organization’s Regional Office for the Western Pacific (WHO-ROWP) citing his achievements in attaining the highest level of health for all Filipinos was a testament to “the strength of a people willing and eager and fervently working towards change.� In his speech keynoting the World Health Day 2013 held at the WHOROWP office in Manila on Monday, the President said that this distinction accorded him is an “appreciation of the shifting culture of governance in the Philippines.� “Today, I accept this honor with deep gratitude, knowing full well that it recognizes not the triumph of a single entity against seemingly insurmountable odds, but the strength of a people willing and eager and fervently working towards change,� the President said. “It is an affirmation of an entire philosophy; an appreciation of the shifting culture of governance in the Philippines. The laws we were able to pass, the reforms we are seeing in the healthcare sector – all of these emanate from our staunch resolve to reinstitute integrity in government service,� he added. The President was cited by WHO-ROWP for his untiring efforts towards making the highest attainable standard of health as a fundamental right for all through the raising of taxes on tobacco and alcohol, and giving vulnerable Filipinos access to health insurance and reproductive health care. He told WHO officials and employees led by its Regional Director Dr Shin Young-soo, members of the diplomatic corps and other government officials in attendance of the underlying reason he has focused so much attention in providing universal healthcare for all: that every human life, every Filipino life regardless of circumstances of their birth, holds value. “This is what I believe in: I believe that every Filipino life, every human life, holds equal value. I believe that there is something inherently unjust when a child growing up in Baseco cannot enjoy the same opportunity to live a productive, healthy life, as those of us here in this conference hall. I believe that four out of ten Filipinos who die without ever encountering a healthcare professional in their lifetime is a number that is simply too high. Proper nutrition, proper access to healthcare, and an opportunity to build a dignified life – these should not be reserved only for those who have the means to pay for it,� the President said. “If we are to build a true regime of opportunities, then the most fundamental freedoms – the freedom from hunger, as my father said; the freedom from unease afforded us by a secure nation; and the freedom to actively participate in our democracy – these must all be extended to every citizen, regardless of the circumstances of their birth,� he added. “And so we set to work. With the help of allies and advocates, we pushed for legislation that would ensure that the status quo of unequal access to resources and knowledge would change. It might have taken a grueling political battle against entrenched interests, but in December of last year, finally, after languishing in congress for so long, both the Responsible Parenthood and the Sin Tax Reform Acts were signed into law,� he noted. The President pointed out that aside from pouring considerable resources to provide healthcare to all Filipinos, “it is also a strategy� to ensure that a strong and healthy citizenry is a productive citizenry. “A healthy citizenry is a productive citizenry: The people whose health we are investing heavily in are the same people who will man workstations, till the fields, power our industries and fuel further economic growth. Children who are inoculated from disease and who get proper nutrition in their formative years will go to school more capable of learning the skills necessary for higher-value jobs as they enter the professional world,� the President said. “Spending less money on medicines and check-ups means more money towards savings, or books for their children, or even investments that can drive the business sector and generate jobs for more of our countrymen – sparking a virtuous cycle of opportunity and inclusive growth,� he stressed. He said that universal healthcare is now within sight as 86 percent of the populace is already enrolled in the country’s health care program, Philhealth, “with the lowest quintile of our population already benefiting from our No Balance Billing policy which allows them to get treated in government hospitals without shelling out a single peso.�

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Aquino satisfaction rating bounces back up MANILA, Apr 8 (Mabuhay) – The public’s satisfaction rating of President Benigno Aquino III bounced back up in the March 2013 Social Weather Stations (SWS)-Business World survey. Vice President Jejomar Binay also continued to enjoy majority trust and approval ratings from Filipinos. A Social Weather Stations-Business World survey showed that Aquino’s performance scores increased to a net of +59 or “very good,� a four-point gain from December 2012’s +55 net score. The March 19-22 SWS-BW survey was higher compared to Aquino’s double-digit decline of +42 or “good� which he gained last May 2012. The SWS-BW survey showed Aquino’s satisfaction scores increased “significantly� in Luzon which saw a 13-point increase. His satisfaction scores also increased 10 points in Mindanao. However, Aquino’s net scores declined 18 points in Visayas. The March 19-22 SWS-BW survey involved 1,200 adult respondents nationwide with sampling error margins of +/-3 percent for national and +/-6 percent for area percentages. Pulse Asia survey A Pulse Asia survey also showed Aquino registering majority approval (72 percent) and trust (75 percent) scores in its March 16 to 20 survey. Meanwhile, Vice President Jejomar Binay also scored majority approval (76 percent) and trust (75 percent) scores, according to the same Pulse Asia survey. Between February and March, Binay earned “significant gains� in public approval with +6 percentage points. Most Filipinos also express approval (53 percent) and trust (51 percent) for Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile. House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. (33 percent and 30 percent) and Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno (32 percent and 29 percent) earned relatively low approval and trust scores. Enrile (+7 percentage points), Belmonte (+6 percentage points), and Sereno (+6 percentage points) had significant gains in their approval scores, but disap-

proval and distrust is “most pronouncedâ€? toward Belmonte and Sereno (16 percent and 19 percent, respectively), according to the same Pulse Asia survey. Only Aquino and Binay enjoy majority approval ratings across geographic areas and socioeconomic classes. Results of the Pulse Asia survey showed that the Senate (57 percent, 55 percent), Supreme Court (55 percent, 51 percent) and House of Representatives (52 percent, 56 percent) enjoying majority approval and trust scores, respectively. The Pulse Asia survey was conducted among 1,800 adults with a +/2 percent error margin at the 95 percent confidence level. Prevailing issues during the period of the survey include the crisis in Sabah, the Supreme Court’s decision to suspend the implementation of the Reproductive Health bill for 120 days, the suicide of the UP Manila freshman, among others. President Aquino’s all-time high public satisfaction rating was at +67 in August 2012. ‘Strong support’ MalacaĂąang attributed the renewed jump in the President’s satisfaction ratings in two recent surveys to the continued strong support of the Filipino people to his administration. “Almost three years into his term, public support for President Aquino’s leadership remains at unprecedented highs. Both the Social Weather Stations and Pulse Asia Ulat ng Bayan surveys consistently demonstrate sustained levels of satisfaction ratings for the President,â€? presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda said on Monday. “The results of these surveys reflect the Filipino people’s abiding confidence in the President, and their support for the reforms that he continues to institute throughout the country,â€? he added. The results encourage the administration as it approaches its mid-term. “Encouraged by the support of the public and guided by the knowledge that the Philippines is beginning to reap the fruits of positive, meaningful change, we continue our steady march towards the realization of our collective aspirations,â€? Lacierda said. (MNS)

China’s Xi says Asia faces ‘new challenges’ to stability BY KELLY OLSEN

Boao, China, April 7, 2013 (AFP) – Chinese President Xi Jinping said Sunday that Asia faced “new challenges� to its stability and warned no one should be allowed to throw the region into chaos as tensions mounted over North Korea. Xi, delivering a speech at an annual international forum on the southern Chinese island of Hainan, did not mention the crisis on the Korean Peninsula or China’s territorial disputes with Japan and Southeast Asian nations. But he said there should be no tolerance for those who foster “chaos for selfish gains� and reiterated that China would “firmly� uphold its “sovereignty� and “territorial integrity�. Tensions have soared in recent weeks with North Korea threatening nuclear war after the United Nations imposed fresh sanctions over its latest atomic test and the US and South Korea launched joint war games. “We need to make concerted efforts to resolve major difficulties to ensure stability in Asia,� Xi said. “Stability in Asia now faces new challenges as hot spot issues keep emerging and both traditional and non-traditional security threats exist,� he added. China has traditionally been North Korea’s closest political ally since they fought together in the 19501953 Korean War and is Pyongyang’s biggest trading partner. Speaking more broadly, Xi called on the international community to push for a “vision of comprehensive security, common security and cooperative security�. Xi said that was necessary so the world could become a stage for the pursuit of “common development�, as opposed to one “where gladiators fight each other�. “And no one should be allowed to throw a region, even the whole world, into chaos for selfish gains,� he added. Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard echoed Xi,

saying “all countries in the region share a deep interest in strategic stability�. But Gillard, who has been critical of Pyongyang, singled out North Korea, saying the Korean Peninsula situation illustrated the potential consequences of conflict. “There, any aggression is a threat to the interests of every country in the region,� she said in her speech, hailing “the growing cooperation of all regional governments to prevent conflict on the Korean Peninsula and to counter North Korean aggression�. Alexander Downer, a former Australian foreign minister who listened to the speeches, said it was not surprising that Xi did not mention North Korea by name as it was not something a Chinese president would do. “I thought he was alluding to it,� Downer added. “And I think in a very clever way, which was very reassuring to people.� It was Xi’s first attendance at the Boao Forum for Asia since becoming China’s president last month. He took over as head of the ruling Communist Party in November and now holds the country’s two most powerful positions. In an apparent reference to territorial disputes, Xi said while China would “properly handle differences and frictions with relevant countries�, it would continue to press its claims. “On the basis of firmly upholding its sovereignty, security and territorial integrity, China will maintain good relations with its neighbours and overall peace and stability in our region,� he said. Beijing and Tokyo are at odds over small, uninhabited islands in the East China Sea administered by Japan but also claimed by China. China is also engaged in disputes with some Southeast Asian countries including the Philippines and Vietnam over islands and reefs in the South China Sea.

Margaret Thatcher: ‘Iron Lady’ who changed Britain BY GUY JACKSON

LONDON, April 08, 2013 (AFP) – A towering yet divisive figure, Margaret Thatcher rose from humble grocer’s daughter to the woman who changed the face of Britain and helped tear down the Iron Curtain. Thatcher, who died following a stroke on Monday aged 87, was an arch-conservative and free-marketeer, and to her supporters she was uncompromising in defending Britain’s interests abroad. Yet Thatcher divided opinion like few other politicians. Right-wingers hail her as having got Britain working again after the economic crises of the 1970s. But few tears will be shed for her in Britain’s industrial heartland, where her policies left coalmines redundant and the men who toiled in them bloodied in violent clashes with the police.

The left accused Thatcher of dismantling traditional industry, claiming that her reforms frayed the fabric of society. But her most famous riposte to critics of her economic policies summed up her straight-talking, nononsense style. “To those waiting with bated breath for that favorite media catchphrase, the U-turn, I have only one thing to say. You turn if you want to. The lady’s not for turning,� she said in 1980. On the world stage, she built an extremely close “special relationship� with US president Ronald Reagan which helped bring down the curtain on Soviet communism. In 1982, she dispatched a naval taskforce to retake the Falkland Islands after they were invaded by Argentinian troops – the victory also helped her to reverse sinking poll numbers and win the next general election as she rode a wave of patriotism.


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UTREACH Lin says stereotypes held him back  LOS ANGELES, April 6, 2013 (AFP) – Jeremy Lin says he felt a sense of bigotry towards him when he wasn’t offered a US college scholarship despite being named one of California’s top players in his final high school year. “Well, I think the obvious thing in my mind is that I was Asian-American, which, you know, is a whole different issue but I think that was a barrier,” Lin said. “I mean it’s a stereotype.” Speaking to the American news program “60 Minutes”, Lin says he likely would have been given a basketball scholarship to a major university if he wasn’t AsianAmerican. The “60 Minutes” show on Saturday released clips of the interview which will air Sunday night. The starting point guard for the NBA’s Houston Rock-

ets, led Palo Alto High School to a 32-1 record and a state championship in 2005-06. Lin finished with an average of 15.1 points, 7.1 assists and 5.0 steals per game and was named northern California’s divison two player of the year. Lin eventually signed on with the basketball programme at Harvard University where he twice made the Ivy League all-star team. Despite his success on and off the court at Harvard, Lin went undrafted by the NBA. Asked by CBSNews.com if NBA teams passed on Lin because he was Asian-American, NBA commissioner David Stern said, “I think in the true sense the answer to that is yes.” Lin eventually made his way to New York where the Knicks signed him as a reserve player whose job was to come into the game off the bench.

Lin was then thrust into a more prominent role when the club had two starters felled by injury. He led the Knicks on a remarkable winning run and his brilliant individual play sparked the catchword “Lin-sanity”. The Knicks reached the playoffs and Lin was expected to play a big role for New York in the upcoming season. But when the Houston Rockets made an offer of $25 million for three years and the Knicks refused to match it, Lin departed for Texas where retired Chinese star centre Yao Ming played his entire NBA career. Lin felt racism slaps last season such as an ESPN website headline “Chink in the armor” after he had a poor showing on the court. Lin became a star in Taiwan, his parents’ homeland, and China, where one of his grandparents is from.

USCIS reaches FY 2014 H-1B nonimmigrant visa cap WASHINGTON, April 8 – For the first time since 2008, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has reached the statutory H-1B cap of 65,000 for fiscal year (FY) 2014 within the first week of the filing period. USCIS has also received more than 20,000 H-1B petitions filed on behalf of persons exempt from the cap under the advanced degree exemption.    USCIS received approximately 124,000 H-1B petitions during the filing period, including petitions filed for the advanced degree exemption. On April 7, 2013, USCIS used a computer-generated random selection process (commonly known as a “lottery”) to select a sufficient number of petitions needed to meet the caps of 65,000 for the general category and 20,000 under the advanced degree exemption limit. For cap-subject petitions not randomly

selected, USCIS will reject and return the petition with filing fees, unless it is found to be a duplicate filing. The agency conducted the selection process for advanced degree exemption petitions first. All advanced degree petitions not selected were part of the random selection process for the 65,000 limit. As announced on March 15, 2013, USCIS has temporarily adjusted its premium processing practice. To facilitate the prioritized data entry of cap-subject petitions requesting premium processing, USCIS will begin premium processing for H-1B cap cases on April 15, 2013.  For more information on premium processing for FY 2014 cap-subject petitions, please see the related USCIS Alert. USCIS will continue to accept and process

petitions that are otherwise exempt from the cap. Petitions filed on behalf of current H-1B workers who have been counted previously against the cap will not be counted towards the congressionally-mandated FY 2014 H-1B cap. Accordingly, USCIS will continue to accept and process petitions filed to: • extend the amount of time a current H-1B worker may remain in the U.S.; • change the terms of employment for current H-1B workers; • allow current H-1B workers to change employers; and • allow current H-1B workers to work concurrently in a second H-1B position. U.S. businesses use the H-1B programto employ foreign workers in specialty occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise in

3 LA-based Asian and Pacific Islander Giving Circles distribute $44,500 to community organizations LOS ANGELES, CA – On Tuesday, April 2, 2013, the 2nd Annual Joint Asian and Pacific Islander Giving Circle Reception was held at Empress Pavilion in Chinatown, Los Angeles with over 60 philanthropists, community leaders, and supporters in attendance. The event brings together the Asian Pacific Community Giving Circle, the Circle of Change and the LA API Giving Circle, to celebrate community-based philanthropy in the Asian and Pacific Islander (API) communities. These three Giving Circles have a total of 90 members, all pooling their donations together to make bigger grant awards to organizations serving API communities in need. “It’s no surprise to see how the Giving Circles have grown over the past few years,” says Debra Fong, Executive Director, Asian Pacific Community Fund. “There are so many wonderful aspects of participating in a Giving Circle. You learn about the community and get to know the organizations and people serving those in need, you get to socialize and network with other donors who share your heart for the API community and with your one contribution, you get a say in how the pooled funds are distributed.” The Asian Pacific Community Giving Circle (APCGC), formerly known as the Asian Pacific Community Fund Board & Friends Giving Circle, is comprised of over 30 members who contribute $250 each because they believe that together they can make a bigger impact than each on their own. APCGC made three new grant awards, $5,000 each to API Equality-LA, the Herald Christian Health Center, and the Korean American Family Service Center for the following programs. API Equality-LA will build and create the nation’s FIRST online support and resource portal for API LGBT teens and their parents. This website will serve two critical purposes: 1) to give API LGBT teens cultural competent tools on how to best come out and 2) to give API parents of LGBT teens linguistically appropriate information on LGBT people. The Herald Christian Health Center’s “Baby Boomers Save Lives” will recruit and train Asian American women volunteers, age 49 and above, on the importance of breast/cervical cancer screening. Through peer-to-peer outreach and with the use of linguistically and culturally sensitive educational materials, these volunteers will train other Asian American women on early cancer detection, assist limited English proficient patients in filling out medical history questionnaires, and train others how to respond to sensitive reproductive system-related questions in a culturally competent manner. The Korean American Family Service Center’s “Life Beyond,” is a support group for female Korean American domestic violence survivors seeking to live a life free from violence. Life Beyond will also include a therapeutic community to help survivors process the effects of trauma and enhance self-esteem and coping skills towards building violence-free, independent lives. Life Beyond will be the first support group established for the Korean speaking community in Los Angeles that integrates peer support with trauma-informed therapeutic aftercare. APCGC, along with the other two Giving Circles are all a part of the AAPIP National Giving Circle Campaign and received a 50% match for each individual’s donation to the Giving Circles. APCGC and the Circle of Change are hosted and administered by the Asian Pacific Community Fund. The APCGC made its first grant in 2009 with just one $5,000 grant award and today, with over 30 members, it granted a total of $15,000. Since inception, the three Circles have granted over $135,000 to organizations serving API communities in need. ABOUT APCF Established in 1990, the Asian Pacific Community Fund is a community-based, nonprofit fund that was created to educate and encourage individuals and companies to support API communities

Members of the Asian Pacific Community Giving Circle and grantees.

in need by donating through workplace giving programs. The organization is the only API community-based fund of its kind in Southern California. Since its founding, APCF has raised and distributed over $2 million in grants to its 29 Affiliate Agencies as well as other community organizations providing services to the API community. APCF Affiliate Agencies serve over 250,000 people annually with programs and services provided in a total of 27 Asian languages plus English and Spanish. Programs include childcare/youth programs, affordable housing, counseling & case management, healthcare, job development & training, legal services, senior services, violence prevention and much more. For additional information, please visit www.apcf.org.

specialized fields including, but not limited to: scientists, engineers, or computer programmers. For more information on USCIS and its programs, please visit  www. uscis.gov. INVITATION FOR BIDS (IFB) No. 1735-A THE RESTORATION AND PAINTING OF THE EXISTING WROUGHT IRON SECURITY DOORS AND WINDOW BARS The Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA) invites vendors to submit firm fixed price bids for the restoration and painting of the existing wrought iron security doors and window bars, perimeter fencing, handrails and guardrails at the following public housing developments located at: Rancho San Pedro Housing Development, 275 W. 1st Street, San Pedro, CA 90731, Estrada Courts Housing Development, 3232 Estrada Street, Los Angeles, CA 90023, Pueblo Del Rio Housing Development, 1801 E. 53rd Street, Los Angeles, CA 90058, San Fernando Gardens Housing Development, 10995 Lehigh Ave., Pacoima, CA 91331. Copies of the IFB may be downloaded from the internet at www.hacla.org under “Doing Business with HACLA”, then click on “Procurement Opportunities” and click “Construction Goods and Services”. Bids will be accepted by the General Services Department at 2600 Wilshire Boulevard, th 4 Floor, Los Angeles, CA 90057, until 2:00 P.M., Pacific Daylight Saving Time, May 7, 2013. 4/3, 4/10/13 CNS-2463553# BALITA MEDIA


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LOS ANGELES

THE US ASIAN POST

IMMINENT THREAT

PACQUIAO

he said. “What we have now is that there is no movement of troops in the border which usually takes place before an attack. That’s why all our international partners have told us that as far as they are concerned there is no imminent threat or attack that is brewing in that area,” he explained. Meanwhile, Hernandez stressed that the embassy is ready

Venetian resort-hotel in Macau if Pacquiao would be appearing there this year, Arum said: “I hope so, I certainly hope so. That will not be this summer, but will maybe be in the fall. “I know he’s expressed a desire to fight here, so we are working on that.” Pacquiao wants his next fight to

be outside the United States, where he has traditionally fought in front of huge crowds and for enormous pay-per-view television revenues, to avoid high taxes. Tamayo had said that Dubai and Singapore were also options. Pacquiao, 34, has won an unprecedented eight world titles in differ-

ent weight divisions, and was until recently regarded by many as the best pound-for-pound boxer. But he lost his World Boxing Organization welterweight crown in June last year in a controversial points decision to US fighter Timothy Bradley, then suffered a knockout defeat to Marquez.

STRIKE FREE

difficult cases. “Threats of a strike also declined considerably, as notices of strike filed by unions continue to follow a downward trend,” Ubaldo said. Strike-related statistics NCMB regional branches received 36 notices of strike during the quarter, 14% fewer than the 42 cases docketed during the same period last year, the bureau chief said. There is a slight increase in workers involved in new notices of strike, though, hinting that bigger companies are the targets of fresh strike threats. Some 5,334 workers are involved in the 36 NS cases received during the first quarter of 2013, 2% more than the 5,230 workers involved in the 42 cases docketed in similar period in 2012. Independent unions account for close to half - 17 cases or 47% - of

the 36 new notices filed during the quarter. Others were filed by affiliated unions and federations. In 2012, all three strikes were declared by unions allied with NafluKMU. Of the 33 notices of strike pending as of March 31, 2013, ten cases were filed by unions allied with either KMU or Naflu. “We continue to exert efforts to maintain the current state of labor relations in the country, so disruptions in the industrial front do not get in the way of the administration’s efforts to secure a better lif efor our people, most especially the private sector workers who comprise a large segment of our population,” Ubaldo said. Baldoz commended NCMB for its efforts and said that “ win- win” strategy through conciliation and settlement is the best. (MNS)

32 are being held. More than 200 armed Islamist followers of the self-styled “Sultan of Sulu” – a new-defunct southern Philippine sultanate – landed in February to claim Sabah for their leader, reviving a centuries-old territorial row. The incursion and a Malaysian counter-assault in early March left at least 68 militants dead along with 10 security personnel, according to authorities, and strained rela-

tions with Manila. But authorities appear to have failed to catch most of the militants, leading to a prolonged security crisis which has forced Malaysia to relocate villages on the coast considered vulnerable to infiltration. Philippine media earlier Monday had cited Muslim rebels as saying that 1,000 gunmen were trying to break through a naval blockade to support the fight against Malaysian security forces.

It took the salvage teams until March 29 to remove the last of the 223-foot (68-metre) USS Guardian, which had to be cut into pieces so it could be lifted clear without damaging the reef further. The incident stirred nationalist anger with demands that the United States pay a large amount of compensation for damaging the reef, which is world renowned for its rich marine life. But Songco said they would only ask for the required amount based on the affected area. “I am not worried about criticism (for the small amount). We are not trying to put one over them and we hope they will do the same with us,” she said. She said the last of the salvage ships had left Tubbataha but a team of US Navy divers and a US vessel

remained in the area, assessing the damage. The United States has apologized for the mishap and has said it would cooperate in addressing the damage. The US Navy said in a statement Saturday that it did not want to speculate about the liability but would coordinate with the Philippine government to assess the damage to the reef. “The Republic of the Philippines may submit to the Navy any and all information it believes relevant to determinations of coral reef damage,” the statement said. The commanding officer and three crew of the USS Guardian were relieved of their duties over the grounding, the US Navy announced earlier this week.

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UNIDENTIFIED From page 1

aircraft capability. Guerrero said they have yet to identify the type of aircraft that flew over Pag-asa Island last April 4. “We cannot ascertain its type or the country where it originated because it was flying too fast and too high for our ground-based moni-

to carry out its contingency plan for Filipinos in case violence breaks out. “They are coordinating very well with community leaders and organizations para paigtinging ang ating contingency plan just in case lumala ang tension. Handa po ang ating embahada, in coordination with the community leaders, and other stakeholders, to bring back our people,” he said. (MNS)

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toring units,” he stressed. Pag-asa island is part of the Kalayaan Island Group over which the Philippines exercises territorial sovereignty, jurisdiction and effective administration in accordance with international law. Both aircraft were headed north and came over from a southwest direction.(MNS)

OVERSEAS VOTING From page 1

menez said that “overseas voters will be diverted in an specified country where they can exercise their rights to suffrage.” “Then we will have to talk about where to divert our voters there. But until that certain things actually happen, overseas elections are a week away, they will actually start on Saturday, tuloy-tuloy na iyon muna,” he said. Even if a war breaks out in Seoul, Filipinos will still cast their ballots, just like in Mindanao, where voters

BANDER From page 1

The settlement was expected, however, after last week’s settlement conference at the courtroom of Judge Richard Platel in downtown Los Angeles. Earlier, Judge Richard A. Honn – who was supposed to hear the case –instructed both Bander and the State Bar to settle the case, calling it “costly.” The criminal lawyer was facing charges for allegedly violating California State Bar rules relating to the loan litigation program his law firm – the Bander Law Firm – initiated but failed after signing up over 800 clients in 2008 and 2009. Clerk of Court Johnny Smith, who is assigned to VSC Judge Richard Platel has said that details of the settlement will not be made public until the terms have been submitted and accepted by Judge Platel. Viselman also has yet to return our calls as of this writing to inquire about the details of the new settlement. But State Bar spokesperson Amee Yarborough on Monday said she will provide the details of that settlement as soon as they’re available. Bander was suspended for three months last year that ended last September. Bander’s latest State Bar case was filed three months later – on December 20, 2012 – and it involves 20 cases based on complaints by 10 homeowners. Prior to Tuesday’s settlement, a pre-trial was held last March 28 at the courtroom of Judge Honn, where Bander tried to exclude this reporter from covering the conference, which was marked “Public Matter.” Meanwhile, a review of Bander’s disciplinary record showed that it was also Judge Platel who was assigned to the first case of Bander. The same record indicated that Bander also tried to “Modify Terms of (his) Probation” and that he also filed a motion to extend the provisions regarding restitution, both of which were denied by Judge Platel last January 24. Court records showed that the first complaint against Bander racked up more than $20,000 in fees that Bander will have to pay. More fees are expected to be added to that amount after the second case. In his first suspension, Bander must pass a professional responsibility test. The State Bar had stated in the stipulation that Bander’s “misconduct evidences multiple acts of wrongdoing or demonstrates a pattern of misconduct as there

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go to their polling places despite mortar shelling. “Hindi ko alam ang atmosphere sa South Korea right now, but I guess Filipinos will vote. Dito nga sa Pilipinas, nagpuputukan ang mga mortal, bomoboto ang mga tao eh. We are very hardy lot, and we are very brave, and even more so for OFWs,” he said. “If is just tension in the air, or if it is just a fear that something might happen, I think they will also vote anyway,” he added. (MNS)

diffusing tensions between labor and management, preventing what could have been debilitating strikes in many companies,” he added. Under the 24/7 scheme, conciliator-mediators are on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week to ensure quick response to clients’ requests for assistance and to make sure that labor disputes are attended to, with the purpose of bringing about early and amicable settlement. Team, or buddy, conciliation is a scheme or strategy anchored on the belief that “two heads are better than one.” It involves partnering of two to three conciliators whose combined efforts and expertise are expected to facilitate settlement of critical and

MALAYSIA From page 1

sian state of Sabah, police said. Sabah police chief Hamza Taib said the group, armed with guns and machetes, was arrested about 12 nautical miles from the state’s were 20 client matters involved.” east coast, less than an hour away by Bander had pleaded “no contest” to boat from the southern Philippines. those charges and is under probaThe group’s wooden motor boat tion for three years. was towed to Sandakan on the east Just like most of the complain- coast of Sabah on Borneo island but ants in the first one, the new cases no details were given of where the were all about homeowners who signed up for the so-called “Save Your Home, Sue the Banks” loan litigation program, where Bander From page 1 promised to sue their lenders and She said a letter requesting force the latter to reduce their compensation would be sent to mortgage payments or modify their the US embassy next week, stressloans. Back then, Bander ran weekly ing this is the amount required by full page advertisements in a com- a law passed to protect the reef, a peting newspaper in 2008 and 2009 UNESCO World Heritage site in a to promote the failed program. In remote area of the Sulu Sea. early 2010, the 25-year-old Bander “We don’t want to be dishonest. Law Firm filed for bankruptcy. It is just a simple process: measure A few attorneys who have dealt it correctly and then they pay. That with Bander in the past and who is all. It is very straightforward,” she thought that Bander’s three-month told AFP. suspension was a “slap on the wrist” Earlier estimates said as much were not surprised to learn that the as 4,000 square meters of the reef same attorney, who is described as had been destroyed when the USS a “public figure” on three different Guardian minesweeper ran aground Facebook pages, was again charged on Tubbataha on January 17 but by the State Bar. Some of them said Songco said their studies found the they expect a longer suspension for damage was less than feared. Bander this time. A former lawyer – who had worked at the Bander Law firm – opined that Bander may have From page 1 to serve the rest of his stayed two- ficially launched in Parañaque City year suspension that Bander stipu- on Monday. lated in the first case. Among the groups included in According to San Francisco- the coalition initiated by the Counbased State Bar defense lawyer Je- cil of the Laity of the Philippines rome Fishkin, “some attorneys, be- are El Shaddai, Couples for Christ cause of the severity of the offense – Foundation for Family and Life, or the little likelihood of success, Catholic Women’s League, Focowill choose to resign rather than lare Movement, and Ang Lingkod face State Bar prosecution. Others ng Panginoon. will lose a contested case and will be El Shaddai head Bro. Mike Vedisbarred,” as posted in his website larde said that they are thinking of www.fishskinlaw.com.” endorsing six to eight senatorial Fishkin also described that “The candidates in the 2013 polls. State Bar is an adversary system” He said the candidates must be and that the “people do not be- pro-family and pro-life. He also come State Bar investigators and said they will also base their deciprosecutors (like Viselman) be- sion on the candidate’s position on cause they want to help attorneys. the reproductive health law, divorce, The prosecutorial mentality in gen- same-sex marriage, and euthanasia eral is to find fault and fix blame.” – all of which are being opposed by Fishkin also warned that “in recent the Catholic church. years, State Bar prosecutors (have) Velarde said they will announce become seemingly petty and mean- the first batch of candidates on Satspirited.” Although Fishskin rec- urday, after asking the bets some ommends that lawyers get a State questions through questionnaires Bar defense counsel, Bander has and interviews. He also said the represented himself. Bander, who candidates they endorse may reach did not have any disciplinary record 10. prior to last year’s suspension, will Section 6, Article II of the 1987 soon have two suspension records Philippine Constitution states that that will be permanently displayed “the separation of Church and State under his name in the roster of at- shall be inviolable. “ torneys. iselman had told the court But Velarde said that the Church that they were prepared to call 35 cannot separate itself from politics witnesses against Bander, including because the Church is composed of former clients and lawyers of the the people, which also makes up the Bander Law Firm. State.

TUBBATAHA

CATHOLIC GROUPS An estimated 80 percent of the country’s population are baptized Catholics. Velarde was likewise quoted as saying that they are not dictating who Catholics should vote for, saying they have the right to choose. Catholic vote? But this has not stopped the Catholic church from actively campaigning against candidates who have stands opposite their own. The Diocese of Bacolod specifically came out with two lists of senatorial candidates – one labeled Team Patay and the other Team Buhay. The Team Patay roster includes names of senatorial bets and partylist groups who supported the passage of the RH Law while Team Buhay includes candidates perceived to be pro-life because they voted against the then divisive bill. Among those listed under Team Patay are Aurora Rep. Juan Edgardo “Sonny” Angara, Bayan Muna Rep. Teddy Casiño, Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano, Cagayan Rep. Jack Enrile, Sen. Francis Escudero, Sen. Loren Legarda, former Akbayan Rep. Risa Hontiveros, and partylists Gabriela, Akbayan, Bayan Muna, and Anak Pawis, On the other hand, those listed under Team Buhay are: San Juan Rep. JV Estrada, Sen. Gregorio Honasan, Zambales Rep. Mitos

Magsaysay, Sen. Koko Pimentel, Sen. Antonio Trillanes, former Las Pinas Rep. Cynthia Villar and party-list groups Buhay and Ang Pamilya. Some, however, argue that a “Catholic vote” is non-existent. Among them is Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago, who cited the case of a former senator. “In the past, the Catholic Church campaigned against Senator Juan Flavier because as Health secretary, he freely distributed condoms. But Flavier won the elections. Thus, the so-called Catholic vote is a political myth,” Political Ramon Casiple, meanwhile, cited the case of former President Joseph Estrada, who won by landslide in 1998 despite some Church officials campaigning against him. “There is none [Catholic vote], definitely, if you are talking of a national vote,” he said in a previous interview. Archbishop Ramon Arguelles of the Archdiocese of Lipa, however, had earlier argued that there are still “Catholics who vote the Catholic way.” “If they are good Catholics, they would vote people who are promoting Catholic values,” he said. (MNS)

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New secret of youthful rejuvenation comes to Refresh Aesthetic & Lifestyle Medicine via the Vampire Facelift Glendale, California – Refresh Aesthetic and Lifestyle Medicine in Glendale, California, is introducing the Vampire Facelift procedure for residents throughout Southern California. The Glendale offices, headed by Dr. Larry P. Vigilia MD., are quite enthusiastic about the results of their new non-invasive medical technique that helps reverse the appearance of aging skin, acne scars and collagen depletion. During a discussion with his team, Dr. Vigilia stated, “Our body’s blood is the best source of healing and regenerative properties. We now have the technology to isolate the growth factors introduced into the dermis. Growth factors attract and cause proliferation of stem cells and the stem cells of a person’s own blood help stimulate youthful skin regeneration.” Dr. Vigilia added, “The new Vampire Facelift procedure assists with reversing normal

aging effects, particularly on the areas of the face, neck, chest and hands, as well as hair growth. And because one’s own blood is the source of the therapy, there is virtually no risk of allergic complications or intolerance.” According to Dr. Vigilia, the Vampire Facelift procedure utilizes Platelet Rich Plasma therapy (PRP) in conjunction with recently proven methods to aid in the reversal of aged skin tissue deterioration that manifests as wrinkles, facial folds and the “hollowing” around eye sockets. Dr. Vigilia adds, “PRP has been used in recent years to expedite the healing process of many surgical procedures, as well as to improve recovery from sports injuries. We can now incorporate PRP with added techniques to stimulate the regeneration of skin cells, collagen restoration and the skin’s underlying tissue with re-

markable results.” Dr. Vigilia believes in holistic approaches to maintaining health and restoring a youthful appearance wherever possible. “The body has its own healing processes, but they do deteriorate with age and sun exposure. Offering the Vampire Facelift procedure aligns with my beliefs for an extremely cost-effective and non-invasive method to help restore one’s youthful and natural aesthetic beauty.” Refresh Aesthetic and Lifestyle Medicine is a professional medical group based in Glendale, California since 1983. For more information, please contact: Ken Vigilia at Refresh Aesthetic and Lifestyle Medicine 1141 E. Colorado St., Glendale, CA 91205 http://www.refresh-la.com e-mail info(at)refresh-la(dot)com. Office 818956-1141.l

Cut salt, boost potassium for heart health, study says (Relaxnews) – New research from the British Medical Journal recommends the following diet tweak: increase potassium by eating more bananas and vegetables and cut down on salt to reduce blood pressure and risk of stroke. One study review found that consuming an extra two or three servings of fruits or vegetables per day would do the trick. The researchers added that a combination of increased potassium and reduced salt had a bigger effect than changing just one of these factors alone. Scientists from the UN World Food Programme, Im-

perial College London and Warwick Medical School, among others, looked at 22 controlled trials and another 11 studies involving more than 128,000 subjects. Potassium-rich foods include vegetables, nuts and seeds, milk, fish, chicken and bread.  The Mayo Clinic reports that most adults need 4,700 mg of potassium a day, but that is not always an easy feat, since you’d need to eat 11 bananas a day to meet those requirements. However, a healthy diet packed with fruits and vegetables should provide ample levels of this impor-

Dr. Larry P. Vigilia MD

tant nutrient, they add.  A baked potato with the skin has 1,081 mg of potassium, while just one cup of cooked spinach has 839 mg.  A separate study on salt intake, led by researchers at the Wolfson Institute of Preventive Medicine, Queen Mary, University of London, analyzed the results of 34 previous trials involving more than 3,000 people. Results found that modestly cutting your salt intake for four or more weeks promoted significant drops in blood pressure in adults with both high and normal blood pressure.  Both studies were published April 4 in the British Medical Journal.


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Penis size does matter to women, researchers say By Kerry Sheridan

WASHINGTON, April 8, 2013 (AFP) – The eternal question of whether penis size

matters to women has been probed by a team of international scientists who reported on Monday that yes, ladies do find larger men more attractive.

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What’s more, prehistoric women who could see the sex organs of their scantily clad male counterparts may have helped influence the evolution of larger genitals in men by choosing to mate with partners who were bigger. Researchers said they decided to tackle the topic because past studies had offered conflicting answers, and may have been sullied by asking the women too directly. “Since penis size is a sensitive subject, it’s hard to determine whether females lied or ‘self-deceived’ in their responses,” lead author Brian Mautz, a postdoctoral researcher in evolution and sexual selection at the University of Ottawa, told AFP via email. So they embarked on a new type of study, using computer-generated images of generic male figures with varying heights, body shapes and flaccid penis lengths. A sample of 105 Australian women were asked to view 53 of these life-sized robot-like pictures, which rotated so they were visible at different angles. The women – all heterosexual – were not told they were participating in a study about penis size. They were simply asked to rate the figures according to sexual attractiveness. Their answers were collected anonymously. Researchers found that women rated tall men with long penises as the most attractive. The women also tended to gaze longer at the larger men. But not too long – each rating was made in about three seconds. But how big is best? On that question, researchers were, er, stumped. “We didn’t find an ideal (i.e. ‘most attractive’) penis size or height,” Mautz explained. “The attractiveness scores were still increasing at the largest values for these traits.” The findings were published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal in the United States, called the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

The results “directly contradict claims that penis size is unimportant to most females,” and also hint at why human males tend to have relatively larger genitalia when compared to other primates, the study said. “Our results show that female mate choice could have played a role in the evolution of the relatively large human male penis,” the authors wrote. “Before clothing, the nonretractable human penis would have been conspicuous to potential mates.” The study did not get into the racial background of men and whether that may affect penis size, but it did document the ethnicity and age of the women it was studying for hints about whether penis size mattered. More than 70 percent of the women were of European origin, 20 percent were Asian and seven percent were from elsewhere. Their average age was 26.

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A new diet craze promises to help you lose weight while you sleep. Photo: Miramiska/shutterstock.com.

Overnight Diet trend promises weight loss while you snooze (Relaxnews) – Dieters are flocking to the latest trend on the scene: the Overnight Diet, a rapid weight-loss plan that claims you can actually slim down while you sleep. American obesity doctor Caroline Apovian, of the Boston Medical Center, just penned a new book, “The Overnight Diet,” advising that dieters eat a high-protein diet for six days, followed by one day of a liquid diet. That followed by lots of sleep (with no exercise necessary) equals a slimmer you, up to one kilo per night and four kilos in one week – at least that’s the promise. The book is published April 9 and available internationally. While mounting research suggests that more sleep can help you lose weight, skeptics say the diet is all a little too good to be true. “In order to lose two pounds of body fat overnight you’d have to burn up about six or seven thousand calories and there’s just no way to do that by sleeping,” Keith Ayoob, director

of the nutrition clinic at the college’s Rose F. Kennedy Center, told ABC News.  “It goes without saying that anything being touted as an ‘overnight diet’ is complete and total bunk,” writes fitness blog Blisstree. “But I’m gonna say it anyway because people still fall for the allure of quick, fast, and easy crash diets.” Apovian doesn’t entirely disagree that the weight loss is water, at least intially, and the diet does make room for a variety of healthy foods, including some good carbs and plenty of fruit. The liquid diet day consists of all-you-can-drink smoothies that Apovian claims are specifically engineered to produce a reduction in the body’s production of insulin. If you’re bloated or store fat around your midsection, insulin is to blame, she says, and following the diet can help release that stored water and salt weight – leaving you slimmer and feeling healthier.

Scientists create rich, velvety chocolate with half the fat (Relaxnews) – British scientists have figured out a way to make chocolate taste delicious and velvety but with half of the fat: add a little fruit juice. Dr. Stefan Bon, who led the research at the University of Warwick in the UK, said the new technology would allow manufacturers to make chocolate with fruit juice, vitamin C water, or even diet soda. “We have established the chemistry that is a starting point for healthier chocolate confectionary,” said Bon. “This approach maintains the things that make chocolate ‘chocolatey’, but with fruit juice instead of fat.” He added: “Now we’re hoping the food industry will take the next steps and use the technology to make tasty, lower-fat chocolate bars and other candy.” Bonn presented the work, announced April 7, at the American Chemical Society’s meeting in New Orleans.


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LOS ANGELES, April 5, 2013 (AFP) – Toyota has agreed to a $16 million deal with a southern Californian county over charges the Japanese auto giant hid safety issues linked to unintended acceleration of cars, officials said Friday. Toyota issued recalls in 2009 and 2010 affecting nearly six million vehicles in the United States due to the risk caused by floor mats and “sticky” gas pedal issues, said Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas. “The possibility of experiencing an unintended acceleration event during Toyota’s recall crisis clearly scared many consumers,” he said in a statement announcing the Toyota payout. “This settlement is an important step in holding Toyota accountable for the safety and security of their customers,” Rackauckas added, noting that Toyota has a “major presence” in Orange County, south of Los Angeles. More than 200 US federal and some 100 state cases were filed against the Japanese carmaker. Toyota pulled around 10 million vehicles worldwide to settle claims that it hid gas pedal defects blamed for dozens of deaths.

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KITCHENOMICS

10 Tips for Perfect Grilling To help you get the perfect steaks every time, follow these simple tips from the experts at Omaha Steaks: 1. Clean and preheat grill on high. 2. Lightly oil everything before putting it on the grill. This helps the searing process and prevents sticking. 3. Season food before grilling. 4. Sear the outside of steaks when grilling. This helps with the flavor and juiciness. 5. Use tongs or a spatula to turn meat on the grill. Using a fork can damage the meat. 6. Cover grill as much as possible during the grilling process. This helps to lock in the grilled flavor and will help prevent flare-ups. 7. Keep a spray bottle with water handy to douse any unexpected flare-ups. 8. Use the 60/40 grilling method. Grill for 60 percent of the time on the first side, then grill 40 percent of the time after turning over the food. This will make sure your food is evenly cooked. 9. Place cooked food on a clean plate. Never place cooked food on the plate you used to transport the raw food to the grill without thoroughly washing it first. 10. Allow foods to “rest” for 5 minutes between cooking and eating. This will help them retain moisture when you cut into them. To get your grill time just right, download SteakTime, Omaha Steaks’ free app with an innovative grill timer, at www.itunes.com/appstore. FAMILY FEATURES

Grilled Ribeye Steak with Chimichurri Salsa

Mediterranean flavors make per-

Serves 4 4 Omaha Steaks Ribeye Steaks Sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste 1 cup Chimichurri Salsa (see recipe) 4 cilantro sprigs Begin by thawing steaks. Then season and grill to desired doneness. Top each steak generously with Chimichurri Salsa. Garnish each steak with one cilantro sprig.

fectly grilled steak even better.

Chimichurri Salsa

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he next time you fire up the grill, give your taste buds a thrill with

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You can find more adventurous recipes at www.OmahaSteaks.com.

Makes 1 cup 1/2 cup green onions, minced 2 teaspoon fresh oregano, minced

1/4 cup red bell pepper, minced 1/4 cup cilantro, minced 1 tablespoon jalapeño, minced 2 teaspoons fresh garlic, minced 1/2 teaspoon sea salt 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar 1/2 lime, juiced Combine all ingredients and mix well.

Korean Barbecue Beef Tenderloin with Stir-Fried Bok Choy

Mediterranean Sirloin Skewers Serves 4 to 6 2 pounds Omaha Steaks Sirloin Tips 1 cup Mediterranean Steak Marinade 4 to 6 skewers Thaw sirloin tips. Prepare Mediterranean Steak Marinade. Drain sirloin tips and place in a resealable bag with marinade. Marinate sirloin tips in refrigerator for at least 8 hours or overnight. Agitate bag periodically to ensure marinade is well combined with the sirloin tips. Preheat grill on high. Thread sirloin tips onto skewers. Grill for 4 to 5 minutes on each side. Serve over couscous, pasta, salad or rice.

Mediterranean Steak Marinade Makes 1 cup 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil 2 teaspoons sea salt 1 teaspoon ground black pepper 1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice 2 tablespoons fresh garlic cloves, chopped 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped 1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped 1/4 cup California chardonnay wine Combine all ingredients and mix well.

Serves 6 to 8 1 3-pound Omaha Steaks Tenderloin Roast 2 cups Korean Barbecue Marinade (see recipe) 1/4 cup Omaha Steaks Private Reserve American Steak Rub 1 pound Stir-Fried Bok Choy (see recipe) 1 14-ounce bottle Korean barbecue sauce 6 to 8 cilantro sprigs 1 teaspoon black sesame seeds 1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds Begin by completely thawing tenderloin. It will take 2 days in refrigerator or 1 hour in a sink full of cold water. Remove tenderloin from plastic, and place in a large resealable bag with Korean Barbecue Marinade. Marinate overnight in refrigerator. Remove tenderloin from marinade, and season with steak rub. Sear tenderloin on all sides on a pre-heated grill. Place in a 250°F oven for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until the internal temperature is 125°F for medium rare. With 15 minutes remaining, prepare the bok choy and heat Korean barbecue sauce. Remove tenderloin from oven, let rest 15 minutes. Slice and serve. Garnish with cilantro and a mixture of sesame seeds.

Korean Barbecue Marinade Makes 2 cups 1 tablespoon sesame oil 2 tablespoons garlic, finely chopped 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced 1 cup canned pear juice 1/2 cup soy sauce 2 tablespoons brown sugar 1 tablespoon crushed red pepper Place sesame oil in a thick bottom pot and add garlic and ginger. Place pot on a medium burner and add the rest of ingredients and slowly bring to a boil. Bring heat down to a simmer and cook while stirring for approximately 5 minutes. Remove sauce from heat and refrigerate for up to one week.

Stir-Fried Bok Choy 1 1 1/3 1

tablespoon canola oil pound bok choy, chopped cup Korean barbecue sauce tablespoon sesame oil Sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste In a wok, briefly heat canola oil. Add bok choy and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Add Korean barbecue sauce and sesame oil to wok and mix well. Serve while hot.


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‘Booba’ star Rufa Mae Quinto wants a ‘re-launch’

Rufa Mae Quinto

Rufa Mae Quinto, who is popular for her onscreen “dumb blonde” persona Booba, is looking to turn a page as an actress by starring in what she calls a “re-launching film.” This time, the 34-year-old sexy comedienne is hoping to project a more serious image by playing more “intelligent” role in an action film. Quinto will take on her first bigscreen lead role in nine years in “Miri: Ang Huling Henya,” local film production company Viva Films announced early this week. In the action flick directed by Marlon Rivera, who is behind the indie hit “Ang Babae sa Septic Tank,” Quinto portrays an agent who will nonetheless have a touch of the sexy humor that has been identified with the comedienne. “Kailangan talaga kasi ibang Rufa

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Mae ang mapapanood nila. Medyo serious ako dito. Medyo lang, ah. Hindi na ‘yung usual na Booba character pero may touch pa rin ng comedy,” said Quinto, whose last starring role in a film was in “Masikip sa Dibdib” in 2004. To transition from her “Booba” image to an action star, Quinto said she has had to go through rigorous training in preparation for the physically demanding scenes in “Miri.” “Kailangan fit tayo dahil nga sa mga fight scenes. Kaya sobra ang training ko, boxing, Muay Thai, at pati firing,” she was quoted as saying by Viva Films in a report on its official website. According to the film arm of Viva Entertainment, “Miri: Ang Huling Henya” is scheduled to hit theaters in May. (MNS)

Sunshine adjusts to new life, house Nearly a month after she left the house she shared for years with her husband, actor Cesar Montano, actress Sunshine Cruz is adjusting to her new life and her new home with her three daughters. Cruz left Montano after the actor’s alleged affair with starlet Krista Miller. “Okay naman, okay naman kami. Mas simple ang bahay namin ngayon. Pero happy naman kami,” Cruz said. After his controversial split with Montano, Cruz decided to make a showbiz comeback via ABS-CBN’s hit series “Dugong Buhay.” She also appeared on the cover of the men’s magazine FHM. Cruz believes that now is the right time for her to work again. “Dugong Buhay” will air its pilot episode on Monday, April 8.(MNS)

Daniel defends Kathryn, mom against bashers Actor Daniel Padilla came to the defense of his leading lady Kathryn Bernardo after she was allegedly bashed in various social networking sites over the Holy Week break. Padilla said he knows that having haters is part of being a celebrity but what he can’t accept is the fact that some of their so-called fans are also badmouthing his mom and Bernardo’s mom Min. “Siyempre unahin natin yung kay Kathryn. Unang una, artista lang kami at hindi kami perpekto. Hindi ho siguro

tamang bina-bash mo ang isang tao lalo na ang ermats. Si Kathryn sabihin na nating hindi perpekto. Bakit sino ka ba? Hindi mo dapat sinasabihan ang tao ng ganyan, lalo na ang nanay, dapat respetuhin mo, nanay iyan eh,” he said. Without detailing the things that have been said against Bernardo and her mom, Padilla said he was really disappointed after he learned about what happened. “Kung sinong mang-bash sa ermats ko, puntahan niyo na lang ako sa bahay. Ta-

lagang nalungkot [si Kathryn] kasi pati si Tita Min [nadamay]. Ang lakas naman ng loob na bastusin ang nanay. Nakakabadtrip talaga,” he said. Padilla said he has advised Bernardo to ignore negative people on Twitter and just focus on their “real supporters” who appreciate them. ”Sabihin na nila lahat ng gusto nilang sabihin, sa huli naman sila rin ang mukhang tanga rin eh. Kulang sa pansin ang mga taong iyon, hindi kailangan pansinin talaga. Okay lang yang mga

bashers, bashers na iyan. Sa mga bashers, tuloy niyo lang iyan, enjoy niyo lang. Kung hindi niyo ako gusto, hindi ko rin kayo gusto,” he said. Last Thursday, Bernardo’s mom lashed out against the people who say negative things against her and her daughter. “Nag eenjoy ka ba pag naninira ka ng kapwa mo at mas lalo ka bang natutuwa pag binabastos ang Nanay?? Kung OO ang sagot mo dito, GO ENJOY,” she said. (MNS)


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Filipino Comedian Vhong Navarro with Kakai Bautista, Osang to Perform, May 9, at Pala PALA, CA, March 27, 2013….Popular Filipino comedian Vhong Navarro will make a special appearance with fellow comedians Kakai Bautista and Osang Thursday, May 9, in the In¿nity Showroom at Pala Casino Spa & Resort. VHONG NAVARRO KAKAI BAUTISTA OSANG 8 p.m. Thursday, May 9 Infinity Showroom Tickets: $60, $50, $35 Tickets on sale at 10 a.m., Friday, March 29, with no service charge, at the Pala box office, or call 1-877-WIN PALA (1-877946-7252).  Tickets also available at Star Tickets, 1-800-585-3737, or www.startickets.com. Pala is located in Northern San Diego County; from San Diego/Riverside, take I-15 to Highway 76 east ¿ve miles; from Los Angeles County and Orange County, take I-5 south to Highway 76 east, then travel 23 miles. Pala is 15 miles north of Escondido, 12 miles south of Temecula. Address: 11154 Highway 76, Pala, CA 92059 Telephone: 1-877-WIN-PALA (1877-946-7252) Web site:  http://www.palacasino. com Other shows coming to Pala: Rex  Navarrete (Filipino Comedian), 7 p.m., Saturday, April 6, In¿nity. Tickets, $20, at www.startickets.com Queen Nation with Led Zepagain, 7:30

p.m., Saturday, April 20, Events Center. Tickets, $12 (advance), $14 (day of show), at www.startickets.com Professional Bull Riders (PBR), 2 p.m., Saturday, May 4 and Sunday, May 5, Pala Rodeo Grounds. Tickets, $58, $48, $28, $10 (Children under 12); $83, $73, twoday packages, at www.startickets.com Tony Bennett, 7:30 p.m., Saturday, May 18, Palomar Starlight Theater. Tickets, $101, $76, $56, at www.startickets.com Jeff Dunham, 8 p.m., Friday, May 31, Palomar Starlight Theater. Tickets, $71, $61, $51 at www.startickets.com Jeff Dunham, Second Show, 8 p.m., Saturday, June 1, Palomar Starlight Theater. Tickets, $71, $61, $51, at www.startickets. Theresa Caputo, 7:30 p.m., Tuesday, June 4, Events Center. Tickets, $39.75 and up at www.startickets.com Johnny Mathis, 7:30 p.m., Saturday, June 22, Events Center Tickets, $85, $75. $65, $50, at www. startickets.com Aaron Lewis, 7:30 p.m., Saturday, July 20, In¿nity. Tickets: $50, $45 at www. startickets.com  About Pala Casino Spa & Resort Pala Casino Spa & Resort includes a Las Vegas-style casino with 2,000 slot machines, nine poker tables and 87 table games; a 507-room hotel; a 10,000-squarefoot, full-service spa and salon that features 14 treatment rooms; a state-of-the-art ¿tness center; swimming pool with 12 private poolside cabanas, and dual-tem-

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perature outdoor Jacuzzi. Pala also offers 10 restaurants and 40,000 square feet of meeting and convention space. Pala Casino Spa & Resort is an AAA Four-Diamond Award winner for eight consecutive years. Its state-of-the-art Pala Spa was named the 2009 Best Casino Spa by Spas of America, the 2009 Best Casino Spa by the Southern California Gaming Guideand in 2012 received a spaAward as one of the top 100 spas in the United States. In 2011, Pala Casino Spa & Resort was voted Best Casino in San Diego by the public in the 10News.com annual A-List poll sponsored by KGTV-TV 10 News in San Diego. For more information, visit http://www.palacasino.com.

Vhong Navarro

Carmina hints Zoren may return to ABS-CBN Actress Carmina Villaroel revealed that her husband Zoren Legaspi may join her at the Kapamilya network. Villaroel stressed that Legaspi has no exclusive contract with other networks. “Si Zoren naman ever since wala siyang kontrata sa mga stations. Lagi siyang per show. So ‘yun nga ‘yung sinasabi niya na pakalat-kalat siya dito, pakalat-kalat siya diyan. So if ever man na gagawa siya sa ABS-CBN I guess it’s ¿ne kasi dati naman ay nakagawa siya ng ‘Agua Bendita,’” Villaroel said when asked about speculations that Legaspi will be moving back to ABS-CBN. Asked if they could also do projects together, the actress replied: “Sa ngayon wala pa kasi. Ginagawa ko pa ang ‘SIR’ (Showbiz Inside Report) at ginagawa ko po ang ‘May Isang Pangarap.’” No more babies In the interview, Villaroel also said that she it seems unlikely that she and Legaspi will try to add a baby to their family. The couple have twins, Cassie and Maverick, who are now 12. “Naku parang hindi na yata. Baka hindi na, kasi medyo malayo na ang age gap. Gusto ko sana pero parang malayo na,” the actress said. “I mean we are not really trying pero kapag dumating eh di sige open kami, thank you, kung hindi okay lang din.” Right now, Villaroel is enjoying her time with her children, who are very supportive of her works as an actress and as host of ABS-CBN’s “Showbiz Inside Report” (MNS)


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