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BINAY FLYING TO CHINA TO BEG FOR LIFE OF FILIPINO DRUG MULE MANILA, Philippines – For the second time, Vice President Jejomar Binay has been assigned to fly to China to plead for the life of a Filipino drug mule. Binay told reporters Friday afternoon, at the oath-taking of his daughter Sen. Nancy Binay, that he had just been informed that President
Benigno Aquino III has a letter that he is to handcarry to Chinese President Xi Jinping. Binay, the Presidential Adviser on Overseas Filipino Workers’ Concerns, said he will fly Sunday to Beijing. Asked what are the chances that the Chinese government will defer the execution of the Filipino, Binay
said, “It’s hard to speculate [as] many factors are at work here. Let’s just continue praying.” He said he is always an “optimist, so let’s see.” Meanwhile, Binay reminded Filipinos tempted to work for drug smugglers that chances of their not being detected are almost nil because of the “very sophisticated
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Vice President Jejomar C. Binay told reporters the news of his weekend trip to China during the oath-taking of Senators Nancy Binay, his daughter, and Gregorio Honasan at the Coconut Palace. Photo by Jamin Verde ©InterAksyon.com
equipment” now being used in big airports. Most of the drug mules caught in China were detected in Hong Kong airport, but the authorities would usually let them through in order to find out who they work for in the mainland.
Moreover, he said, punishment for drug smuggling is really tough. “The death penalty is imposed on those caught with 50 grams, but here we’re talking of kilograms. So it’s not worth taking the risk,” he added. Still, Binay said President Aquino
has a soft spot for OFWs, and the government always considers that even if an OFW may have committed a wrong that caused his or her incarceration, “this person became an OFW out of necessity.” Continued on page 2
tensions between Manila and Beijing over rival claims to the South China Sea. At a naval base around 13 kilometres (eight miles) southwest of the capital Manila, US Navy SEALs trained Filipino soldiers how to use small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or drones, launching one from a boat out at sea after which it circled the base and landed in the water.
US maritime civil affairs officer Jeremy Eden said these were the smaller “Puma” drones used only for surveillance and not the more lethal, armed versions employed in Afghanistan. “They (the Filipinos) are very interested and highly motivated to learn and if they acquire the systems, they will use them effectively,” Eden said. The drones would be useful
for the poorly-equipped Philippine military which faces both internal insurgencies and potential external threats, said Lieutenant Jojit Fiscar, a senior coordinator of the naval exercises. “This would be a very good instrument to use. This unmanned aerial vehicle can monitor the actual movement of the targets,” he said. Continued on page 2
US trains Philippines on how to use drones amid China fears
Filipino and American troops prepare to release a drone from a speedboat off Sangley Point in Cavite, as the two countries’ joint naval exercises entered its second day Friday. Photo ©AFP
CAVITE CITY - US troops trained their Philippine counterparts how to use surveillance drones Friday, as Manila seeks to boost military ties with Washington and counter what it perceives as a rising security threat from China. The naval exercises are part of annual training operations between the two defense partners, but they have come under closer scrutiny this year due to simmering
INTERNATIONAL / GLOBAL NEWS
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
Binay flying to China Anti-Muslim US bloggers barred from Britain tobegfor life ... Continuation from page 1
He said he shared the President’s hope that the day will come soon when thousands of Filipinos don’t have to leave their country daily in order to find jobs abroad. The hope, he added, is that “our countrymen will go abroad not out of necessity but because they want to.” Binay said this would be his second time to deliver the letter of appeal of President Aquino to for a stay of execution. He previously flew to China in February 2011 to appeal for the stay of execution
of Filipinos Ramon Credo, Sally OrdinarioVillanueva and Elizabeth Batain, who were also convicted of drug trafficking. The execution was deferred but the three were eventually executed on March 30, 2011. The Filipina to be executed next week was one of two Filipinos arrested in a province near Shanghai in January 2011 after they were caught with 12.369 kilos of high-grade heroin. She was sentenced to death without reprieve in 2012. ■
InterAksyon.com / June 28, 2013 6:56 PM
US trains Philippines on how to use drones...
Continuation from page 1
The US and Philippine troops also practiced marksmanship and piloting small rubber boats which are frequently used by naval commandos. Military officials from both sides stressed that the exercises had nothing to do with China’s claim to the South China Sea. But Philippine Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin reiterated Friday that the Philippines was looking to give the United States greater access to its military bases, saying this was needed to respond to China’s threats. “At this point in time, we cannot stand alone. We need allies. If we don’t do this, we will be bullied by bigger powers and that is what is happening now: there is China, sitting on our territory,” Gazmin said. “What are we going to do? Wait till they get into our garage?”
On Thursday he said the Philippines wanted to give the United States and also Japan greater access to its military bases. President Benigno Aquino’s spokeswoman Abigail Valte said separately that any increased US presence would comply with the Philippine constitution. She also said China should not object. “Whatever we do within our territory... is perfectly within our rights.” China claims nearly all of the strategically vital South China Sea, even waters close to the shores of its smaller neighbors. Tensions between Beijing and other claimants to the sea, particularly the Philippines and Vietnam, have escalated in recent years amid a series of Chinese political and military actions to assert its claims to the waters. ■ Agence France-Presse / June 28, 2013 7:42 PM
LONDON - Two US political bloggers who founded an anti-Muslim group have been banned from entering Britain following reports they were to attend a march by the far-right English Defence League (EDL), the government said on Wednesday. Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer, who set up Stop Islamization of America and operate the website Jihad Watch, have been forbidden from entering Britain on the grounds their presence would “not be conducive to the public good”. In response to the decision, Spencer said on the Jihad Watch website: “The nation that gave the world the Magna Carta is dead.” The EDL is planning a march on Saturday, ending in the Woolwich district of London, where a British soldier was brutally murdered last month. Geller and Spencer had been expected to attend. Two Muslim converts have been arrested and are the chief suspects in the murder. A Home Office spokeswoman said: “We can confirm that Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer are subject to an exclusion decision. “The Home Secretary will seek to exclude an individual if she considers that his or her presence in the UK is not conducive to the public good. “We condemn all those whose behaviours and views run counter to our shared values and will not stand for extremism in any form.” Anti-racism groups had campaigned for the Americans’ exclusion. Matthew Collins, researcher with the Hope Not Hate group, said the
Members of the English Defence League (EDL) pose for a photograph during a rally outside the Old Bailey, in London, on June 6, 2013.Two US political bloggers who founded an anti-Muslim group have been banned from entering Britain following reports they were to attend a march by the far-right English Defence League, the government said on Wednesday. Photo by Adrian ©AFP.com
organisation was “absolutely delighted” with the move. He described Geller and Spencher as “among some of the most extreme antiMuslim activists in the world”. “They’ve nothing to contribute to life in this country. They’re not here to contribute to good community relations. They only wanted to come here and help the EDL stir up more trouble.” But the leader of the EDL, Tommy Robinson, said the decision was “embarrassing” and insisted that Geller and Spencer were coming to Britain to lay flowers where the soldier died.
He said: “It’s embarrassing for this socalled land of democracy and freedom of speech. “I’m just gobsmacked. How many hate preachers are living in this country? It just shows what sort of a two-tier system we have here.” Spencer said on the website: “In not allowing us into the country solely because of our true and accurate statements about Islam, the British Government is behaving like a de facto Islamic state. “The nation that gave the world the Magna Carta is dead.” ■ AFP / June 26, 2013 / 05:43 PM
Mandela still critical as relatives meet QUNU, South Africa - Nelson Mandela’s close family huddled at his rural homestead on Tuesday to discuss the failing health of the South African anti-apartheid icon who was fighting for his life in hospital. Messages of support poured in from around the world for the Nobel Peace Prize winner, who spent 27 years behind bars for his struggle under white minority rule and went on to become South Africa’s first black president. Mandela remained in a critical condition Tuesday, the South African presidency said. “We must keep him in our prayers and leave the rest to the Almighty to decide on,” Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe said. Family members including one of Mandela’s daughters and at least two grandchildren were seen gathering for a meeting in the village of Qunu, where the charismatic former leader spent his childhood tending cattle and living in mudwalled huts. The meeting was called “to discuss delicate matters”, according to South Africa’s SAPA news agency, amid speculation that the location of his possible gravesite was on the agenda. Tensions emerged between elder clan members and Mandela grandchildren during the talks, according to sources close to the family, although it was unclear exactly why.
The 94-year-old’s condition appeared to take a significant turn for the worse over the weekend with the presidency announcing on Sunday that he was “critical”. Flowers and messages of support piled up outside the Pretoria hospital where Mandela was admitted on June 8 with a recurring lung problem dating back to his time at the windswept Robben Island prison camp near Cape Town. “He is a man who changed the world,” said Vusi Mzimanda, who was among the well-wishers. “He brings hope to everyone,” he said. “I just hope that he will get better and come to us. We don’t want to lose him even though we know it’s late.” Supporters sang songs for the former
president and released 100 white doves outside the hospital. Some 36 trainee police officers laid flowers. “The flowers, that’s the only way we can show our appreciation to our former president,” said Brigadier Noma Binuele. Relatives have been coming to Mandela’s bedside each day as doctors battle to save the moral icon, who was once considered a terrorist by the United States and Britain for his support of violence against the apartheid regime. Ex-wife Winnie Madikizela-Mandela— herself a figurehead of the anti-apartheid struggle—and his grandchildren visited the hospital on Tuesday. Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town
Thabo Makgoba was also among the visitors, although his aides declined to comment on the reason. President Jacob Zuma called on South Africans to respect the Mandela family’s “dignity and privacy”. “We must demonstrate our love and appreciation for his leadership during the struggle for liberation and in our first few years of freedom and democracy by living out his legacy and promoting unity, nonracialism, non-sexism and prosperity in our country,” Zuma said in a statement. Messages of goodwill also flooded in from overseas. Zimbabwean Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai described the iconic figure as “an inspiration”. The White House said it was monitoring Mandela’s condition but could not yet say whether his ill health would affect a planned visit by US President Barack Obama to South Africa from Friday as part of a tour of Africa.
In any case, Obama is unlikely to see Mandela as he is “indisposed”, South Africa’s international relations minister Maite Nkoane Mashebane said. Mandela—who is due to celebrate his 95th birthday on July 18—has been hospitalised four times since December, and South Africans have been coming to terms with his increasing frailty. Upon his release from jail in 1990 in one of the defining moments of the 20th century, Mandela negotiated an end to apartheid and won the country’s first fully democratic elections. He served a single term as president, guiding the country away from internecine racial and tribal violence, before taking up a new role as a roving elder statesman and leading AIDS campaigner. He stepped back from public life in 2004. The South African government has been criticised following revelations that the military ambulance that carried Mandela to hospital developed engine trouble, resulting in a 40-minute delay until a replacement vehicle arrived. The presidency said Mandela suffered no harm during the wait for another ambulance to take him from his Johannesburg home to a specialist heart clinic in Pretoria 55 kilometres (30 miles) away. ■ Simm Mdledle / AFP
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INTERNATIONAL / GLOBAL NEWS
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
Australia PM knits toy kangaroo for royal baby SYDNEY - Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard has revealed she is knitting a red kangaroo for the first baby of Prince William and his wife Kate. The nation’s first woman leader, battling a tough final week in parliament ahead of September elections amid renewed speculation that she could be ousted from within her own party, found time to tell the Australian Women’s Weekly she had set herself the task of making the toy. Gillard, known globally for her stance against sexism, said it was important people saw a different side of her beyond the politics. “In terms of knitting for Kate Middleton’s baby—I knit for babies—in part, they are the smaller projects, I’ve
got not that much time in my life,” Gillard told the magazine to be published on Wednesday. “I just thought that it would be a cute project to work on. I thought I would set myself the challenge of knitting a little stuffed toy, and why not a kangaroo?” The prime minister’s office suggested the idea of the knitting story, but the media have made light of it with Sydney’s Daily Telegraph calling it “Spins & Needles” and a “last-stitch bid to woo voters”. The charm offensive comes amid more bad opinion polls for Gillard and her centreleft Labor Party, with the latest Newspoll published in The Australian on Tuesday showing her personal support has crashed to record lows. The poll found that if an election were
Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard shakes hands with the child of a market seller in Papua New Guinea on May 10, 2013. Gillard has revealed she is knitting a red kangaroo for the first baby of Prince William and his wife Kate. Photo by Ness Kerton ©AFP.com
held now, Labor would be crushed 56 percent to 44 percent by the conservative opposition led by Tony Abbott, a former minister in John Howard’s government. Despite knitting for the royal baby, Gillard said she still hoped Australia would one day become a republic. “There is a real sense of respect for the Queen, so I do think a natural moment to look again (to a republic) will be when her reign comes to an end,” she said. “Prince William and Kate, and their child, will still be personalities in Australia; people will still follow their lives with interest.” The heir to the British throne and the duchess of Cambridge are expecting the baby in mid-July. ■ AFP / June 25, 2013 / 08:44 PM
Prince William (L) and his wife Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, arrive at Westminster Abbey in London on June 4, 2013. Photo by Leon Neal ©AFP.com
The British Museum in London on August 28, 2010. The British Museum will introduce a cinemastyle age limit later this year when it hosts an exhibition of Japanese art featuring graphic sexual content. Photo by Nicolas Asfouri ©AFP.com
Age limit slapped on racy Japanese art show LONDON - The British Museum will introduce a cinema-style age limit later this year when it hosts an exhibition of Japanese art featuring graphic sexual content, a spokeswoman said on Wednesday. The images set to go on show in London in October showcase the Japanese erotic art form Shunga, but some are so explicit that children under the age of 16 will only be allowed to enter if accompanied by an adult. A spokeswoman for the museum said one image by the artist Hokusai would show a woman in a tryst with two octopuses. “We are applying parental guidance advice to the exhibition that all children under 16 must be accompanied by an
adult and that they should be aware the material is of a sexually explicit nature,” the spokeswoman said. In a preview of the show, the museum showed off one of the tamer paintings, “Courtesans of the Tamaya House” by Utagawa Toyoharu, dating from the 1770s or early 1780s. “This is a finishing school for tarts. You can see all the skills that a successful tart has to know,” the museum’s director Neil MacGregor said of the painting. The British Museum is Britain’s most popular visitor attraction and is currently experiencing high demand for its show “Life and Death in Pompeii”, which has attracted 1.7 million visitors since April. ■
AFP / June 26, 2013 / 02:08 PM
INTERNATIONAL / GLOBAL NEWS
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
danger by early evening. “He received threats from the Taliban and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi. Other militants had also threatened him,” Sheikh said. Baqir has worked on several cases involving militants, serving as a judge in special anti-terrorism courts set up in Pakistan to hand down quick judgements in terror cases. Police said six kilogrammes of explosives were used to detonate the bomb, planted on a motorcycle. Sheila Varadan, South Asia legal advisor for the International Commission of Jurists, said that such attacks signalled a “renewed challenge to the ability of the Pakistani judiciary to function as an independent institution”. Karachi, a city of 18 million people, contributes 42 percent of Pakistan’s GDP but is rife with murder and kidnappings and has been plagued for years by ethnic, sectarian and political violence. Last year around 2,000 people were killed in violence linked to ethnic and political tensions, its deadliest toll in two decades. In the northwest, another bomb attack killed the head of a pro-government tribal militia, along with his brother and nephew in Jani Khel, Bannu district, officials said. Security officials told AFP that Malik Hashim Khan supported an army operation in the area, part of Khyber Pakistani security personnel gather around a police car that was damaged in a bomb attack in Pakhtunkhwa province which borders Karachi, on June 26, 2013. Taliban bombs in Pakistan have killed 12 people and wounded 14 others, including a senior judge seriously injured in Karachi. Photos by Rizwan Tabassum ©AFP.com Afghanistan, in 2007-08.
A local resident mourns the death of a relative after a bomb attack.
Taliban bombs kill 12, wound Pakistan judge: officials
KARACHI - Taliban bombs in Pakistan on Wednesday killed 12 people and wounded 14 others, including a senior judge seriously injured in the business capital Karachi, officials said. Judge Maqbool Baqir, who has worked on a series of terrorism cases, was targeted by a bomb that killed at least nine people on a busy street during the morning rush hour. Baqir is a member of Pakistan’s minority Shiite Muslim community and had been threatened by militants, including hardline Sunni Muslim sectarian outfit Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, which
has claimed a series of devastating bomb attacks on Shiites. The bomb, planted on a motorbike, exploded as Baqir drove past with his security detail in Burns Road in the centre of the city. At least nine people, including eight members of the judge’s security detail, were killed and 14 other people wounded. “The dead include six police officers, two (paramilitary) Rangers and the judge’s driver,” police official Ameer Sheikh told AFP. Baqir was taken to hospital with critical injuries, but was said to be out of
“It was a powerful bomb which destroyed the vehicle completely. Malik Hashim, his brother and nephew died on the spot,” a security official told AFP on condition of anonymity. A second official said the dead bodies were destroyed beyond recognition. Pakistan has for years been fighting homegrown Taliban insurgents in its border areas with Afghanistan. A spokesman for Pakistan’s umbrella Taliban movement, Tehreek-e-Taliban, claimed responsibility for both attacks. “We claim responsibility for the attack on the judge because he used to give verdicts against Islam and Muslims,” Ehsanullah Ehsan told AFP from an
Security personnel gather around a police car that was destroyed in a bomb attack.
undisclosed location. “Taliban also attacked the head of the pro-government militia in Bannu because he joined hands with the government against the mujahideen,” he added. ■ Ashraf Khan / AFP / June 12, 2013 / 8:16 PM
BUSINESS AND FINANCE
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
Philippine unit of Malaysia’s Kuok Group expects 20 pct profit growth for entire 2013 MANILA - The listed Philippine property arm of Malaysia’s Kuok Group expects to maintain double-digit growth for the year, as buyers continue to lap up the company’s projects. During the company’s annual stockholders meeting, Shang Properties Inc director Wilfredo Woo told reporters that earnings for the remainder of the year would mirror its first quarter performance. “We feel very positive about the property market in the Philippines for the near future. It shows from our results,” he said. Shang Properties’ first-quarter profit rose by 20 percent year-on-year to P358.3 million. The company owns the Shangrila Plaza Mall in Mandaluyong and the Enterprise Center in Makati, as well as a number of luxury residential projects.
Woo said the company expects earnings to continue to do well from sales of One Shangrila Place in Ortigas and Shang Salcedo Place in Makati. As of last count, a total of 220 units accounting for 18 percent of One Shangrila and 22 percent of Shang Salcedo have been sold. Woo said the company expects to sell all the units in One Shangrila within the next six to eight months.
“For Shang Salcedo it will take up longer, maybe in a couple of years or 24 months,” he added. Besides the said projects, Shang Properties is set to develop new projects in Makati, Taguig and Tagaytay. The company’s 2,840-unit condominium project on a 10,000 square meter lot in Malugay, Makati is already in the advanced planning stages. “We hope to start the project end of this year and preselling will start first half next year,” Woo said. The company will also unveil 98 units of large apartments in Fort Bonifacio, Taguig in 2014. “We continue looking for further landbank. We do have other landbank like in Tagaytay but that is under design and planning,” Woo said. ■ Euan Paulo C. Añonuevo / InterAksyon.com / June 26, 2013 / 4:23 PM
Jan-May budget deficit nearly doubles from a year ago
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File photo of income tax return deadline at the Bureau of Internal Revenue. A budget deficit occurs when tax collections fall short of government expenditures.
MANILA - The government incurred a budget deficit in the first five months of the year that was nearly double that of last year, according to National Treasurer Rosalia de Leon. During the 3rd Philippine Financial Market Forum, De Leon said the government’s deficit reached P42.8 billion deficit at endMay, or almost double the P22.8 billion in the same five-month period last year. She said this amount is still preliminary, as the official data for May has yet to be released.
A budget deficit happens when public expenditures outstrip tax collections, thus forcing the government to borrow money, which in turn inflates the country’s debt. For the entire year, the government has set a deficit cap of P238 billion, equivalent to two percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). A measure of economic performance, GDP is the amount of final goods and services produced in the country, while the deficit-to-GDP ratio indicates how manageable is the government’s revenue shortfall. ■ Rain Castro / InterAksyon.com / June 26, 2013 / 5:11 PM
AboitizLand offers to take over Alctantaraled operator of Batangas ecozone MANILA - The property arm of the Aboitiz group is set to acquire a controlling stake in the Alcantara-led industrial estate operator. In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, Aboitiz Equity Ventures Inc (AEV) said Aboitiz Land Inc made an offer to purchase 60 percent of Lima Land Inc, a joint venture between Alsons Land Corp and Marubeni Corp of Japan. Listed Alsons Consolidated Resources Inc owns Alsons Land. “The offer to purchase is subject to the requisite due diligence review and the completion of a definitive share purchase agreement,” AEV said. Lima Land owns the 486-hectare Lima Technology Center, an economic zone in Malvar, Batangas and Lipa City. AboitizLand is building five projects
and earns recurring income from its industrial estates. It operates the Mactan Economic Zone II in Lapu-Lapu City and the West Cebu Industrial Park in Balamban, through its subsidiary Cebu Industrial Park Developers Inc. AboitizLand is set to seal an agreement with Ayala Land Inc (ALI) for the development of a new business district in the so-called queen city of the south. AboitizLand earlier formed a consortium with Ayala and ADC & HAS Airports to bid for the Mactan Cebu International Airport project, marking its participation in the government’s public-private partnership project. In November 2012, AEV acquired full ownership of AboitizLand from Aboitiz & Co. for P3.2 billion. ■ Krista Angela M. Montealegre / InterAksyon.com / June 25, 2013 / 6:07 PM
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BUSINESS AND FINANCE
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
PSEi bounces back above 6,000-mark after positive US economic data MANILA - Philippine share prices on Wednesday registered its biggest one-day increase since before the global financial crisis struck, putting the benchmark index back to positive territory for the year as a stream of US data indicated the world’s biggest economy is gaining traction and as concern over a cash crunch in China eased. At the Philippine Stock Exchange, the benchmark index soared 329.88 points or 5.7 percent to close at 6,118.94, ending a five-day losing streak that tipped the stock market into “bear” territory. This marks the local barometer’s biggest one-day increase since August 2007. “Against a backdrop of solid fundamentals that have not changed even amidst the volatilities in the past weeks, the declines have served to put some stocks at attractive prices. I think this is what we saw today with the strong recovery of the market,” PSE chairman Jose T. Pardo said. Year-to-date, the PSEi returned to positive
territory posting a 5.3 percent increase after finishing 2012 at 5,812.73. The PSEi’s recent surge also topped the increase in other Asian markets for the day, even besting Indonesia’s Jakarta Composite, which rose 3.9 percent. “Volatility is a natural effect of uncertainties that have arisen due to what some perceive to be significant policy announcements in other parts of the world. When the market goes past the overreaction phase, countries with strong fundamentals and buffers against uncertainties should be able to stay the course of their growth. The causes for the Philippines’ impressive growth continue to persist and should remain strong moving forward,” Pardo said. All sectors are in the green with the holding firms, property and industrial counters rising by more than six percent each. Advancers dominated decliners, 146 to 34, while 30 issues were unchanged. A
total of 1.58 billion stocks worth P9.63 billion changed hands. Actively traded stocks were SM Investments, PLDT, Universal Robina, Ayala Land and LT Group. Top gainers were Federal Resources, Asia Amalgamated and Cyber Bay, while the biggest losers were
Chemphil, MJCI Investments and Omico. “We’re seeing a technical bounce because of the positive sentiment overseas last night. The market is heavily battered and bargain hunters are much braver today,” said Astro del Castillo, managing director at First Grade Finance Inc.
On Tuesday, the PSEi sank 3.05 percent to erase the market’s gains for the year and drag the stock market to bear territory. “The market is expected to remain volatile amid the changing investment landscape. The fundamentals remain intact and anything below 6,500 level is a buying window,” del Castillo said. Almost a week after the Federal Reserve said it could taper off stimulus if the US economy showed signs of improvement, data on durable goods orders, home prices, sales of new homes and consumer confidence beat analysts’ expectations to lift Wall Street. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 100.75 points or 0.69 percent overnight to 14,760.31. Late Tuesday, the People’s Bank of China said it had supported financial institutions facing temporary cash shortages, adding that this would continue if needed. ■ Krista Angela M. Montealegre / InterAksyon.com / June 26,
2013 / Updated 4:51 PM
Philex asks gov’t to lift suspension order on Padcal operations
MANILA - Philex Mining Corp has asked the government to lift the suspension order on its Padcal mine operations. During the annual stockholders meeting of the country’s largest listed mining firm, its chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan said the company filed last Friday a petition before the government to permanently lift the suspension order. “We are aware of the deadline on July 7. We have initiated discussion with the MGB for the possible lifting of the suspension order,” Pangilinan said, referring to the Mines and Geosciences Bureau, which ordered the suspension of operations in August last year. The suspension order stemmed from
the accidental spill of tailings i at the height of torrential rains in late July last year. Philex voluntarily suspended operations on August 1. The government has since fined Philex at least P1 billion for violation of its environmental compliance certificate (ECC) as well as of the Clean Water Act. Last March 8, MGB allowed Philex to temporarily resume operations at Padcal, Benguet province to enable the company to rehabilitate its damaged tailings pond ahead of the rainy season. The temporary permit lapses July 8. Philex vice president and Padcal resident manager Libby Ricafort said the four-month temporary resumption of operations has
allowed the company to establish a beach level of 584 meters above sea level on the back of the 25,000-26,000 tons a day production of tailings. However, the 592-meter target is “not achievable” at the existing rate of mining operations, Ricafort said, adding that at least four million tons would be required. So far, the company has produced 2.4 million tons of tailings. In the first quarter of the year, Philex’s profit dropped to P400 million as a result of the suspension order. At the company’s stockholders meeting today, Pangilinan however said Philex could register a profit in the second quarter. “Under normal conditions, the company can report profitability. We have reported a P400 million profit for the first quarter of 2013, I don’t see any reason (why) we cant report profitability in the second quarter,” he said. But he said full resumption of operations will provide “more certainty” for the company. Pangilinan also chairs TV5, of which InterAksyon.com is the online news portal. ■ Orti Despuez / InterAksyon.com / June 26, 2013 /
Updated 7:02 PM
MoneyGram Joining Forces with Lebara to Offer International Money Transfers on Mobile Devices
MoneyGram funds transfer service now available through Lebara Money website and smart phone apps DALLAS – MoneyGram, a leading global money transfer company, today announced an agreement with Lebara Mobile, one of Europe’s leading mobile telecoms operators, to offer real-time MoneyGram transfer services over the Lebara Money mobile and web solutions. MoneyGram’s money transfer platform is now integrated within the Lebara Money iPhone and Android mobile payment platform solutions and the Lebara Money website, enabling customers in the United Kingdom—and soon, in Spain, the Netherlands, France, Germany, Denmark and Switzerland—to send international transfers from a mobile phone to more than 320,000 MoneyGram locations in 198 countries worldwide. By downloading the Lebara Money
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Foreign investment pledges surge in 1Q, but promise fewer jobs—NSCB MANILA - Foreign direct investment (FDI) pledges in the first quarter shot up from a year ago, but these commitments will create fewer jobs, the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB) said today. In a report, the NSCB said the country’s seven investment promotion agencies (IPAs) reported an 87 percent jump in FDI commitments to P34.6 billion in the first three months of the year from P18.5 billion in the same period last year. Unlike actual FDI flows, investment commitments registered with the IPAs don’t necessarily push through. But in registering their pledges with the IPAs, the foreign investors qualify for tax and other incentives. Despite the jump in investment commitments registered with the IPAs, the pledged amounts would generate 15 percent less jobs at 27,620 this year from 32,347 last year. The seven IPAs are the Board of Investments (BOI), Clark Development Corp (CDC), Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA), Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA), Authority of the Freeport Area of Bataan (AFAB), Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA) and BOI-Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao. Among the seven IPAs, PEZA registered the highest increase in pledges at 157.1 percent to P32.9 billion this year from P12.8 billion last year.
This was followed by BOI with P1.45 billion; SBMA, P134.7 million; CEZA, P86.2 million; and CDC, P18.3 million. The British Virgin Islands topped the list of sources of pledges at P19.6 billion or 56.6 percent of the total for the quarter. “British Virgin Islands’ prospective ventures are mostly in accommodation and food service activities, manufacturing, and administrative and support service activities,” the NSCB said. Japan and the Netherlands accounted for 15.1 percent and 6.3 percent billion, respectively, majority of which were intended to finance projects in manufacturing, real estate activities, and administrative and support service activities. The NSCB said 57 percent of the total approvals in the first quarter is intended to fund projects in the accommodation and food service activities sector. The P19.5 billion worth of investments committed to this sector is 12 folds higher than the P1.6 million a year ago. Joining accommodation and food service activities sector among the top recipients of approved pledges are the manufacturing sector with 22.1 percent, followed by real estate activities, 7.7 percent; and administrative and support service activities, 7.3 percent. ■ Darwin G.
Amojelar / InterAksyon.com /June 26, 2013 / 4:36 PM
HELLO PHILIPPINES IS PUBLISHED FORTNIGHTLY BY UNIVERSAL INFINITY LIMITED. THIS PUBLICATION IS COPYRIGHTED AND ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. UK & EUROPE EDITION • NORDIC, IRELAND, ITALY, SPAIN, AND FRANCE • WWW.HELLO-PHILIPPINES.COM
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
Aquino asks China to spare Pinay from execution
PRESIDENT Benigno Aquino III has asked the Chinese government to spare a Filipina convicted for carrying drugs from execution. Quoting a statement from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said Aquino has already written a letter to the Chinese government “requesting the commutation of a death sentence.” Lacierda did not elaborate. The Philippine government wants China to lower the death sentence of the 35-year-old Filipina, who was caught carrying over six kilos of heroin to the foreign country. At a press conference earlier in the day, DFA spokesperson Raul Hernandez said the Filipina may be executed between June 27 to July 2. In a news release on Thursday, the DFA said, “President Benigno Aquino III has written a letter of appeal to Chinese President Xi Jinping, requesting a commutation of the death sentence to life imprisonment. The letter of appeal was sent today through the Philippine Embassy in Beijing and the Chinese Embassy in Manila.” The DFA said the Filipina was provided with “all necessary and possible assistance and ensured that her legal rights were observed and that her welfare protected from the time of her arrest and throughout the judicial process.” “She was represented by a legal counsel at all levels of proceedings, from
the Intermediate People’s Court up to the Appellate Court,” it added. Over 200 drug cases of Pinoys in China. According to the DFA, as of June 2013, there are 213 drug-related cases involving Filipino nationals in China. “Twenty-eight (28) of these cases resulted in death penalty convictions with two-year reprieve, including that of the Filipino male mentioned earlier, 67 in life imprisonment, 107 in term imprisonment and 10 still pending at the courts,” the DFA said. The DFA reiterated its appeal to Filipinos not to allow themselves to be involved in drug trafficking. It also urged Filipinos “to be extremely cautious when dealing with strangers in airports and other areas of transit. We call for personal vigilance and responsibility on the part of Filipinos who travel abroad.” The DFA said the Philippine government respects Chinese law “and the verdict
of the SPC on the case. The Philippine government itself has a strong anti-illegal drug policy, and is closely cooperating with law enforcement agencies in China and in other countries on efforts against drug trafficking.” Other Pinoys executed in China. Two years ago, three Filipinos—Ramon Credo, Sally Ordinario-Villanueva and Elizabeth Batain—were also executed in China via lethal injection for possession of illegal drugs. Vice President Jejomar Binay was supposed to fly to China at that time to appeal for clemency for the three convicted Filipinos, but the Chinese embassy said the trip was “not appropriate.” The execution of the Filipina in China came at a time when Beijing and Manila are embroiled in a territorial dispute over parts of the South China Sea. ■ Andreo
Calonzo / VVP, GMA News / June 27, 2013 / 3:30 PM
Photo by Erwin Mascariñas ©Philippine Air Force OV-10.
Pilots could be trapped in downed plane’s fuselage - Westcom chief MANILA - The two Philippine Air Force pilots missing since the OV-10 Bronco aircraft they were flying crashed off Palawan Sunday night may not have been able to eject and could still be inside the downed plane’s fuselage, the chief of the military’s Western Command said Wednesday afternoon. “That’s a possibility. They could be inside the fuselage,” Commodore Joseph Rustom Pena said of Major Jonathan A. Ybanez and 1st Lieutenant Abner Trust Nacionin, in a phone interview just hours after a private contractor hired by the Air Force to conduct a sonar search of the area where the plane went down “detected” something on the seabed. Pena said the Cebu-based M/Y Sakura, which conducted the sonar search, has still to give an official report of what its crew detected earlier in the day. Earlier, Commander Carlo Lagasaca, skipper of the Navy’s BRP Mangyan (AS71), which has been leading the search for the downed plane and its crew, said the Sakura “has already requested a buoy and divers,
meaning they detected something big under the sea.” Pena said the Navy and Coast Guard continue to scour an area three nautical miles by 10 nautical miles. “Ito ang mahirap, kasi (This is the difficulty, because) we cannot pinpoint the specific crash site. So all we have to do is to scour that far,” Pena said. Pena reiterated earlier statements by military spokesmen that the two pilots are likely dead. “While we’re waiting the official assessment from the Western Command, we will continue searching for the two pilots and fuselage. Well, the standard 48 (hours’) critical time for any survivor had lapsed. It’s been three nights, you know,” Pena said. The downed OV-10, one of two codnucting a “night proficiency flight” on Sunday, went down some five nautical miles off Puerto Princese City as it was making its landing approach. The Air Force has grounded all its OV-10s since the incident. ■ Jaime Sinapit / InterAksyon. com / June 26, 2013 01:49 PM
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
Pinay drug mule to be executed in China next week
PAL Holdings meets bourse’s public float rule ahead of June 30 deadline MANILA - The operator of Philippine Airlines (PAL) has complied with the minimum public float requirement of the local bourse after certain investors subscribed to its newly issued shares. “Please be informed that in support of the increase in authorized capital stock, 2.415 billion common shares at par value of P1 per share have been subscribed by certain investors via private placement transaction equivalent to P2.415 billion,” PAL Holdings said in a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange. It added that the subscription represents 34.5 percent of the increase in the company’s authorized capital stock. The subscription of PAL’s new investor would increase its public float to 10.25 percent from the 0.55 percent previously.
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PAL Holdings had said it filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) an application to increase its authorized capital stock from P23 billion, divided into 23 billion common shares with a par value of P1 apiece, to P30 billion, divided into 30 billion common shares with the same par value. Come June 30, those firms that still fail to meet the required float would be delisted. Earlier, Lucio Tan’s listed holding firm, LT Group Inc, said the tycoon was in talks with unidentified parties for the sale of his 51 percent stake in PAL. San Miguel Corp owns the remaining 49 percent of PAL and PAL Express as a result of a $500-million equity deal last year. ■ Darwin G. Amojelar / InterAksyon.com / June 27, 2013 / 4:38 PM
A 35-year-old Filipina caught carrying at least six kilos of heroin in China in January 2011 is scheduled to be executed next week, according to a report of John Consulta on GMA Network’s “News To Go” program on Thursday. In a press conference, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on Thursday said the execution will take place anytime from June 27 to July 2. The DFA said the Filipina was with an unidentified man when she was arrested at an international airport in a province near Shanghai. “She was arrested with a male companion who was caught carrying 6.171 kilos of heroine in his own luggage,” DFA spokesman Raul Hernandez said. In China, possession of 50 grams of drugs is grounds for the death penalty, usually carried out through lethal injection. PHL plea. Meanwhile, the report said the Philippine government is planning to send Vice President Jejomar Binay to China to appeal for a lower sentence for the Filipina. In an interview with Pia Arcangel of GMA Network’s “Balitanghali” program on Thursday, Binay said the family of the Filipina has contacted with the government. “Nakikipag-usap na [sila] sa DFA ang [huling] balita ko,” Binay said. He added that the government will also pay for all expenses of the family
if they are allowed by China to visit their relative. Other Pinoys executed in China. In March 2011, three Filipinos—Ramon Credo, Sally Ordinario-Villanueva and Elizabeth Batain—were executed in China via lethal injection for possession of illegal drugs. Credo and Villanueva were executed in Xiamen, while Batain was executed in Guangzhou on March 30 that year. On May 24, 2008, Batain was caught
smuggling 6,800 grams of heroin in Shenzhen. Meanwhile, Villanueva was caught on December 24 that year smuggling 4,110 grams of heroin in Xiamen, while Credo was caught four days later smuggling 4,113 grams of heroin in the same place. In December 2011, a 35-year-old Filipino was also executed in China for smuggling in 1.5 kilos of heroin. ■ Andrei Medina / Gian C. Geronimo / VVP, GMA News / June 27, 2013 / Updated 02:40 PM
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July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
Philippines may get chance to study new military equipment if it allows US to use its facilities THE Philippines may get the chance to study and check out new military equipment from the United States--including planes that detect submarines using magnetic technology--under a proposed agreement allowing the US wider access to facilities at home. Under the proposed “access agreement,” “new military technology” from US may set foot on Philippine soil, Defense Chief Voltaire Gazmin said on Friday, supporting the government’s proposal. “‘Yung eroplano nila, for example, ‘yung P3 Orion, wala tayo nun. Baka pagkanagrefuel ‘yung kanilang jets na makabago e mabibigyan tayo ng pagkakataong mapagaralan at makita ‘yung mga ganung technology,” he said. (The Philippines doesn’t have a P3 Orion. But if it is allowed to refuel in the country, we might have the chance to study it and see how it works.) Gazmin was prompted to raise this possibility after defending the “access agreement” between the Philippines and the United States, which he said was needed so that the country can increase its allies and defend itself against China. “At this point in time we cannot stand with our own feet, we need allies. If we will not do this we will always be at the mercy of big powers. What is happening is that China is already here, they are already on our territory. We cannot just attack them,”
Gazmin said on Friday after leftist party-list solons scored the Aquino administration for entering into a possible defense collaboration with the US. “We had already run after them before a court but look they will not leave us. So, what are we going to do now? Shall we wait they will come further and enter our doorsteps? They are already inside our garage, isn’t it?” Gazmin said. Gazmin further explained that the agreement was actually part of his “two plus two” meeting with his US counterpart recently in line with the increased rotational presence of US forces in the Asia Pacific. Once approved, joint military exercises between both countries will be increased, he said. “We’re also expecting an increase of joint military exercises so kinakailangan natin ng access nila para yung kanilang mga gamit such as eroplano na manggagaling pa ng Okinawa, Japan, or Guam or Hawaii ay maiparada na lang muna dito kasi masyadong malaki yung turnaround time at saka yung konsumo ng gasolina nila,” he said. (Joint military exercises are expected to rise. We need to give them access so that their planes which may come from Okinawa, Guam, or Hawaii may be temporarily parked here since turnaround time is too long and to cut on fuel consumption.) He said they are targeting Subic and the
Lumbia Airport for this purpose. Gazmin also explained that the possible “access agreement” for American forces would be in accordance to the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) which needs the approval of the Senate. “Of course, it should pass Congress approval. Right now, our legal luminaries are carefully studying it,” he said. The government is also exploring a similar agreement with Japan, which is a strategic ally, Gazmin said. “Pero hangga’t wala namang VFA hindi rin sila puwedeng pumasok. Magkakaroon tayo ng exercise with Japan siguro pero hindi sila bababa. Our Technical Working Group will explore this to come up with a mechanism,” he said. (Without a Visiting Forces Agreement with Japan, the Japanese are forbidden to come in and land. But we will hold an exercise with Japan but their troops will be disallowed from disembarking.) Gazmin also said such agreement is not permanent though. “These are all temporary for the duration of the exercise and for agreements eventually agreed upon later on,” he clarified. On Thursday, China warned nations claiming some territories in the South China Sea that if they resort to direct actions to push their claims would be “doomed.” However, Gazmin brushed this aside, reiterating that the Philippines must defend
Trusted by 21 governments, the Lockheed P3 is primarily used for detection of submarines using magnetic technology.
itself. “Well that is their right, their prerogative to say such a statement but you know we have to protect ourselves too,” he said. “In the process of building up our defense we should be able to collaborate with other countries so that we become stronger, we become united. In our rulesbased, legal, and peaceful approach we have been getting a lot of support from European and Asian countries. Our filing for arbitration against China had encouraging feedbacks.” After Beijing rejected Manila’s diplomatic protests over its relentless intrusions into Philippine territories in the West Philippine Sea, President Benigno Aquino III ordered
the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) to bring the case for arbitration before an international court, which action triggered more aggressiveness on the part of China to intrude in Philippine territory. At present, China roped off and even reportedly building structures in Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal, some 124 nautical miles and well within the country’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) off Masinloc, Zambales. China also intruded into Ayungin Reef, part of the municipality of Kalayaan Island Group (KIG) in Palawan. The Philippine Marines have troops stationed in the area. ■ Jaime Sinapit / InterAksyon.com / June 28, 2013 /
Missing UP co-ed’s last text to mom: ‘Mama, I did all of these because I love you’
MANILA, Philippines - On the seventh year since her daughter disappeared in Bulacan while doing her thesis on poor communities, Concepcion Empeño recalled the last exchange they had through text messaging. “She said, ‘Mama, I did all of these because I love you,’” Empeño recalled before students during a forum on Wednesday at the University of the Philippines Diliman, where her daughter, Karen, first enrolled 13 years ago. Karen was seized along with Sherlyn Cadapan, another UP student, allegedly on orders of then Maj. Gen. Jovito Palparan, who has been in hiding along with M/Sgt. Rizal Hilario. The two have been ordered arrested, while Lt. Col. Felipe Anotado and S/Sgt. Edgardo Osorio are being tried at the Bulacan Regional Trial Court for kidnapping and serious illegal detention. “I replied, ‘What kind of love is that, when you keep leaving us?’” Empeño recalled asking her daughter. Karen had been traveling often to “collect the songs of the poor” during her last semester in college. Coming from a family that was not well-to-do either, she had been interviewing farmer-leaders and organizing communities in Hagonoy, Bulacan at the time of her disappearance. “‘No, Mama, you don’t understand,’ [was Karen’s reply.] And her last text: ‘Mama, it’s possible that I will spend a long time here, or that I will never come back,’” Empeño quoted Karen. She remembered being puzzled by her daughter’s words. What did it mean, that her daughter would
Anti-torture rally, 26 June 2013. Photo by Bernard Testa ©InterAksyon.com
never come back? Empeño was at UP Manila for another forum earlier that day, together with Sherlyn’s mother, Erlinda. She also participated in a march to Mendiola in the morning, together with human rights groups Karapatan, Selda, Hustisya, Desaparecidos, the state workers’ alliance Courage, Bayan-NCR, Kilusang Mayo Uno, and youth organizations. The march was also in honor of the International Day in Solidarity with Victims of Torture. Karapatan deplored what she described as the continuing human-rights violations three years into the administration of President Benigno Aquino III. “There is no ‘tuwid na daan’ (straight path). It is an illusion,” said the group, who called the government’s human rights record “glaringly reprehensible.” The group recorded 76 incidents of
torture, 14 enforced disappearances, and 137 extrajudicial killings under the Aquino administration, including children as young as four years old, due to their homes being strafed or communities bombed. View Karapatan’s 2012 year-end report on the human rights situation in the Philippines here: http://www.karapatan. org/files/2012_HR_Report_YEAREND.pdf. “He (Aquino) has not done anything to stop human-rights violations. With all the resources of the government, why can’t they find Jovito Palparan?” asked the group, adding that Malacañang had been reducing these human rights violations to “leftist propaganda” and “aberrations.” Karapatan also cited the promotion of military officials who had been involved in such acts. While the passage of the Anti-Enforced Disappearance Law was important,
Karapatan noted that this would not have been possible if the victims’ families had not lobbied for it in Congress in the first place. The group also enumerated seven break-ins and robberies at activists’ homes and offices of “progressive organizations,” with laptops, flash drives, and even notebooks getting stolen. Karapatan said it will keep making people, including the participants at the forum in UP Diliman, aware that human rights violations continue to happen. They urged everyone to defend and stand up for their rights. Empeño agreed, saying the youth should work together to change a system of government which perpetuates human rights violations. “Let us not lose hope that all the reforms that we want to happen will happen.” Nevertheless, a poem she wrote during
a creative writing therapy session left a haunting reminder. “Kung mayron lang taglay na kapangyarihan Aking pipigilin paglubog ng araw Laging sumisiksik sa aking isipan Ang giliw kong anak na siyang inagaw Sa tuwing sumapit ang aking pagtulog Luha at hinagpis ang siyang bumabalot Pilitin ko mang ibaon sa limot Ngunit hindi pwede at binabangungot.” Roughly translated, it means: “If only I have the power I will stop the sun from setting What keeps going through my mind Is my sweet child who was snatched Every time I sleep Tears and pain envelop me Try as I might to forget I cannot, and I get nightmares.” ■ Tricia Aquino / InterAksyon.com / June 27, 2013 / 6:25 AM
Second PSE exec sacked in less than 4 months MANILA - The Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) has fired the head of its human resources division because of “gross and habitual neglect of duties” as well as “serious misconduct.” In a disclosure, the local bourse said it terminated Sebastian E. Olaivar Jr., PSE assistant vice president and head of the human resources and administration division, because of his “failure to perform his tasks and his prolonged absences.” The dismissal came three months
after the PSE sacked Leo Quinitio, the head of its Capital Markets Development Division, for “breach of company policies and protocols.” ■ Krista Angela M. Montealegre /
InterAksyon.com / June 27, 2013 / 5:17 PM
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EVENTS DIARY UK & EUROPE
DATE / TIME
6 July 2013 Saturday 7.30pm
London Piano Trio and Friends, In association with The Inter-Cultural Society of London
St. John’s Smith Square London SW1P 3HA
6 July Saturday 7 July Sunday 7 July, Sunday 9:00-6:00pm 7 July Sunday 12 - 15 July Friday - Monday
Pistahan sa Newcastle 2013
Blaydon Rugby Club Hexham Road, Swalwell Newcastle Upton Tyne NE16 3BN Event Field Temple Newsam Road Leeds LS15 0AE The Park Centre, Daventry Road, Knowle, Bristol, BS4 IDQ Stade de la Muette 60 Bd. Lannes 75016 Paris Lourdes, France
13 July Saturday
Fiesta sa Cardiff 2013
13 & 14 July Saturday & Sunday 13 & 14 July Saturday & Sunday
Birmingham Barrio Fiesta 2013
20 & 21 July, Saturday & Sunday 10:00am – 7:00pm 27 July, Saturday 9:00am - 5:00pm 28 July, Sunday 11am - 7pm 3 August Saturday
29th Barrio Fiesta sa London 2013
3 August Saturday 3 August Saturday 3 August Saturday 8pm - 2am 3 & 4 August Saturday & Sunday 3& 4 August Saturday & Sunday 4, 11, 18 & 25 August Sundays
Barrio Fiesta in Sussex Summer Party at the Beach! Mr. & Miss Bikini Open Philippines UK 2013 PINOY LIVE SESSIONS 5
Lancing Beach Green Sussex, BN15 8RA Conway Hall 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1 4RL AAA below Archangel – 11 Kensington High Street, W8 5NP
Milton Keynes Barrio Fiesta 2013
Campbell Park, Avebury Boulevard, MK City Centre, Milton Keynes MK9 4AN The Mill Community Centre, Celbridge, Co Kildare Hyde Park, London
16 - 18 August Friday - Sunday 17 August Saturday 17 August Saturday 25 August, Sunday 11.00am
2013 CFC European Mega Conference Dublin, Ireland Mr. & Miss Bicolandia UK ‘13 Barrio Fiesta Sa Brighton
30 & 31 August Saturday 19.30 & Sunday 15.00 / 19.30 7 September Saturday 14 September Saturday 14 & 15 September Saturday & Sunday 21 September Saturday 28 September Saturday 19 October Saturday November Date tbc
Leeds Barrio Fiesta 2013 Pista Sa Bristol 2013 Pista Sa Paris Pilgrimage to Lourdes France Coach trip
A Weekend Pilgrimage to Norfolk
Mitcham Barrio Fiesta 2013 1st Barrio Fiesta Sa Dublin Barrio Fiesta Sa Colchester 2013
2nd Summer Sportsfest Women’s Volleyball Tournament 2013
Couples For Christ ANCOP (Answering the Cry of the Poor) Global Walk 2013
Miss Philippines & Mr. Philippines UK 2013 Mama Mary’s Birthday Penefrancia Fiesta 2013 - Leicester 1st Basketball League Aguman Kapampangan Mrs. Philippines UK 2013 Camarines Sur Filipino Community UK Annual Dance Competition 2013 20th Anniversary Dinner & Dance Parokya Ni Edgar Comeback Concert
University Hospital of Wales, Sports and Social Club, Heath park, Cardiff CF14 4XW Woodgate Valley County Park, Clapgate Lane Bartley Green Birmingham B32 3DS Norfolk - places to visit: Sandringham Estae, Carmelite Community at Quidenham, Claretian Missionaries, Cambridge Bus Tour and Chauffeured Punting Apps Court Farm near Hampton Court, Hurst Road, Walton-on-Thames Surrey KT12 2EG Three Kings Piece, Commonside West Road, Mitcham, Surrey, CR4 4HA National Basketball Arena, Tymon Park, Tallaght Dublin 24 Lower Castle Park Colchester CO1 1TJ
Royal Dublin Society (RDS) Merrion Road Ballsbridge, Dublin 4 Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square Holborn, WC1R 4RL East Brighton Park, Wilson Avenue, Brighton Assembly Point: Hampton Court Palace (Left side) and will walk towards Kingston Bridge, Kingston-Upon Thames The Cockpit Theatre Gateforth Street Marylebone NW8 8EH ILEC Conference Centre and Ibis Hotel 47 Lillie Road, Earls Court, London SW6 1UD Holy Cross Chapel Charing Cross Hospital Fulham Palace Road, London W6 8RF Guthlaxton College Sports Hall, Station Road, Wigston, Leicester LE18 2DS Baden-Powell House South Kensington 65-67 Queen’s Gate London SW7 5JS TBC Radisson Blu Portman Hotel, Portman Square, London W1H 7BG TBC
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition ORGANISER
The London Piano Trio, Robert Atchison, Olga Dudnik, and David Jones are pleased to return to St John’s with renowned friends William Hawkes and Christopher Laurence. The concert features two very well known pieces by Mozart and Schubert together with the world premiere of Jed Balsamo’s work, Piano Trio No.2, commissioned for the London Piano Trio by The Inter-Cultural Society of London. Filipino Community of Newcastle Upon Tyne (FILCAN) Filipino Leeds Association (FLA) Association of Filipino-British in Bristol TFC Fiesta Caravan Batangas Association UK
Star Dragon Events in cooperation with Samar Leyte Association Wales UK (SLAWUK) Filipino Association of Birmingham Pilgrimage Chaplain: Fr. Norlan Julia
ABS-CBN Europe Limited and Philippine Centre Mitcham Filipino British Association Bayanihan Entertainment and TFC FIBRICS (Filipino British Cooperative Society) in Cooperation with Colcheter FILBRIT Community KMF Events Limited Comedy Central Entertainment Group UK Live bands – Rock/Alternative - 8pm – 2am FIREFALLDOWN plus Anino, Opp Zikk, Jehnniel + Free Harmonic (DJ Celebrate til late) Filipino British Society Celbridge Filipino-Irish Community & CFIBA Filipino Movement & Kampi Safe London in cooperation with Filipino Community Volleyball Team Represent London in European Countries CFC UK - Yorkshire, Midlands & Isle of Man Bicol Association UK Ltd
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Omie Rocha: 07867 940 447 firstname.lastname@example.org Atty. Romulo Rivera, 07891 604 638 or 07789 930 496 Ronald Dalida: 07766 314 207 018721410 / 086-0750807 / 087-1209270 Allan: 0750 669 3837 / Joy: 07717 441 468 Jing: 07834 323 408 / email@example.com Ron Albano: 07827 965 478 Rannie Castillo: 07775 441 369 Jonjie: 07737 371 830 Matt A: 07429 334 079 £7 on the door or £5 in advance from www.aaa.uk.net Visit Facebook /3RhythmsProduction Maria Davis: 07737 676 850 Grace: 07951 939 090
Vannz Bio: 07947 160 826 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Salvaleon: email@example.com Julius Maristela: 078 2333 6085
Brighton and Hove Filipino Community CFC-UK Central Region
Garry Gabot: 07917450125 / Riezel Paniza: 07872512828 / Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Sonny/Melona Vigo - 07725830839, Araial/Amelia Ilustre - 07447020757
LK Dance Company
Ronnie del Barrio: 07445 132 613 email@example.com / www.lkdance.org.uk Eva Macadangdang: 07983593914 / Marlowe: 07956944520 / MP_UK@yahoo.co.uk / www.philippines-uk.org Mario: 07818021874 / 07557348240
Philippines UK Org
Aguman Kapampangan UK Camarines Sur Filipino Community UK Batangas Association UK
Jessie Amar: 07983576082 Rico Casyao: 07769262947 Zannie del Mundo: 07886881432 Junart Nieva: 07980557467 / Arthur Nieva: 07947344422 Elizabeth Villaflor: 07584411180 / Mathie Smith: 07908581062 Gloria Diaz - 07572795321 / Julie Villanueva - 079422068 / Ched Gomez - 07980066209 / Tita Leus McCarthy - 07958732406 Alaistair Macdonald: 07584 242 763 Rodolfo Alvia: 07855 294 528
FREE LISTING of your events on the Hello Philippines newspaper and if you know of any Events please contact us and submit your event via email to the following at firstname.lastname@example.org DISCLAIMER: The Events Diary Listing does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation, or favouring by Hello Philippines newspaper. The views and opinions of authors expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of Hello Philippines newspaper. This is merely an Events Diary Listing of what is happening within the Filipino Communities in Europe. This is for general
2013 Monthly Filipino Community Masses in Greater London 1st Sunday
2:00 p.m. 5:00 p.m.
2:00 p.m. 2:00 p.m. 4:00 p.m.
3:00 p.m. 3:00 p.m.
Five Precious Wounds Parish, Brentfield Road, Stonebridge Park, NW10 8ER Ms. Mervic Monocillo 07894636140 Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church, Friary Road, Peckham SE15 1RH Mr. Allen Abeleda 077 1362 5888 St. Peter the Apostle Catholic Church, 103 Woolwich New Road, SE18 6EF Mr. Moises Espanola 078 9464 8639 English Martyrs Church, Chalkhill Road, Wembley Park, HA9 9EW Ms. Becky Sarinas 079 4985 7699 or 074 2576 1519 St. Dominic Catholic Church, 243 Violet Lane, Waddon, CR0 4HN Ms. Merlie Mirto 077 2221 6462 St. Anselm and St. Cecilia, 70 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, WC2A 3JA Mr. Feliciano Ramirez 07733680748 Sacred Heart of Jesus, New Priory, Quex Road, Kilburn, London, NW6 4PS Mr. Sheidrick de Leon: 07738210202 Blessed Sacrament Parish, 157 Copenhagen Street, Islington N1 0SR Ms. Christy Sangalang: 07709119969 Our Lady of Dolours, Servite Parish Church, 264 Fulham Road, London, SW10 4EL Fr. Allan Satur: 02073526965/ email@example.com/ Mr. Roland Adap firstname.lastname@example.org St. Joseph’s Catholic Church/ 218 Roehampton Lane, London SW15 4LE Mr. Rafael Santiago 077 9525 4451 Holy Redeemer Catholic Church, 20 Brixton Road (Oval), SW9 6BU Mr. Ben Ortiz 0772 331 8486 Filipino Mass and Novena to Our Mother of Perpetual Help Farm Street Church of the Immaculate Conception (Jesuit House Chapel) Access on 114 Mount Street , W1K 3AY / Josie Ramos 077 2302 4591
SANDUGO FESTIVAL – Tagbilaran, Bohol “Sandugo” is a Visayan word which literally means One-Blood. The annual celebration commemorates the blood compact between Miguel Lopez de Legaspi and Datu Sikatuna in 1565. It signifies the friendship between the conservative Filipinos and the liberal Spaniards.
IMMIGRATION / OFNEWS
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
In US, Asian immigrants better off than whites — study WASHINGTON - Asian immigrants tend to live in highly segregated enclaves in the United States and their income level is often higher than that of white Americans, said a US study out Wednesday. The nearly 18 million Asian immigrants to the United States are the country’s fastest growing minority group, more than doubling since 1990, said the research by Brown University. Data from the US Census provided a snapshot of the Chinese, Indian, Filipino, Japanese, Korean and Vietnamese living in the United States and how trends have changed. The report, “Separate but Equal: Asian Nationalities in the US,” found that Indians and Japanese were the most economically advantaged nationalities,
while Vietnamese had the lowest incomes and the least education among Asian groups. Still, Vietnamese tended to live in neighborhoods that were about on par with average whites, said the report. Every other Asian nationality lived on average in neighborhoods with higher incomes and more college-educated residents than non-Hispanic whites did, it said. “We are so aware of the disadvantaged situation of blacks and Hispanics that we tend to assume that segregation results in unequal neighborhoods for minorities,” said John Logan, a sociology professor at Brown University. “This isn’t the case for any major Asian nationality. And that means there is very
little incentive for Asians to assimilate into white neighborhoods.” Chinese were the single largest national group, with more than four million people or a quarter of the Asian total, followed by Filipinos (3.4 million) and Indians (3.2 million). “Indians and Japanese are the more advantaged nationalities, while Vietnamese have the highest unemployment, lowest income, and least education among these groups,” said the report. Indians had the highest median household income among Asians, at $89,600 in 2010 compared to nonHispanic whites at $54,000. Filipinos were second highest, followed by Chinese and Japanese.
“Asians live separately but in some respects they live in better than equal neighborhoods compared to whites,” said the report. “Although there are variations among the Asian national origin groups (with Vietnamese living generally in the least affluent neighborhoods, and Japanese,
Koreans and Indians in the more affluent areas) the findings are similar for all groups.” Los Angeles and New York have the highest number of Asian immigrants, with nearly 1.5 million in each metro area. ■ Agence France-Presse / June 26, 2013 / 2:30 PM
Film reveals life in US for Filipino beaten up in HK undocumented immigrants facing assault charges WASHINGTON - Two years ago this weekend, Philippine-born journalist Jose Antonio Vargas came out publicly in the New York Times as an undocumented American, a term he prefers to the loaded phrase “illegal immigrant.” He was 12 years old in 1993 when his young mother put him on a flight in Manila to be raised by his grandparents in California, in the hope he could live the American dream to the fullest. What happened since that Times essay is the subject of “Documented,” written, produced and directed by Vargas, 32, which got its world premiere Friday at the American Film Institute’s AFI Docs festival. “I’m still undocumented,” said Vargas, who shared a Pulitzer prize for breaking news when he was a reporter at the Washington Post, where only one trusted editor knew of his 24-7 dread of getting caught and deported. “I’m a reporter at heart. I go by facts. But at the same time, I also live this,” he told AFP in a telephone interview Friday. “It’s been very interesting going around the country, talking to people who think they know what this (debate) is about, but really don’t. Our lives are up against tremendous amounts of misinformation and a lot of ignorance.” The timing of “Documented” couldn’t be better for the outgoing and outspoken Vargas, a regular guest on TV news and talk shows who also runs a website, DefineAmerican.com, which tackles immigration issues. Congress is grappling with root-andbranch legislation that would beef up security along the vast US-Mexican border in return for the regularization of the status of what American bureaucrats often call “illegal aliens.” At the same time, President Barack Obama’s administration has been
deporting illegal immigrants at a furious pace: nearly 1.59 million during his first four years in office alone, according to the US Department of Homeland Security. Many of the 11 million undocumented persons in the United States—including 1.3 million from Asia, 800,000 from South America and 300,000 from Europe— have fingers crossed for the best-case outcome: full US citizenship. More than two years in the making, “Documented” was originally supposed to focus on the youthful citizenship activists known as DREAMers, but it grew to cover Vargas’s own adventures taking his story to average Americans. In a Michael Moore moment at a Mitt Romney presidential campaign event in Iowa, Vargas turns up with a sign declaring his undocumented status to the Republican hopeful’s hardcore conservative fans. One white middle-aged couple boasts how their daughter-in-law had legally immigrated from Britain—adding, with no sign of irony, how a helpful US senator greased the notoriously long and complicated process. But the emotional highlight comes when Vargas goes on Skype to reconnect with his mother, Emelie Salinas, who lives outside Manila. Together, over a dodgy Internet connection, they discuss his plight and how it came to be. For now, Vargas cannot go to the Philippines to visit her because he has no US passport—and thus no guarantee he will be allowed back into the country where he has built his life and made his name. She, in turn, cannot travel to the United States to see him, because getting a tourist visa is next to impossible for Filipinos and others from developing countries. She has already tried and been denied. “Can you imagine?” Vargas told AFP. “I have seen more of my mother in three
A Filipino man who was caught on video being mauled by five men in Hong Kong is the one who has been charged with assault—by one of the men beating him up. In a report aired on 24 Oras, Hong Kong police said charges of
“assault occasioning actual bodily harm” have been filed by a Chinese security guard against the 47-year old Filipino man. The video, posted by an overseas Filipino worker on Facebook, showed the man being held down by five
people in an undisclosed area in Hong Kong. The OFW said in an exclusive interview with GMA News that the mauling incident occurred on June 16 in front of a building where various Filipino-owned shops are located. According to the Hong Kong police, tension erupted after the security guard asked the man to move to the sidewalk because he was standing in the middle of a busy street. The man is now out on bail while the investigation of the case is ongoing. In a statement posted on its website, the Philippine Consulate General in Hong Kong said it continues to work with the Hong Kong Central Police Station regarding the incident. The Philippine Consulate said it cannot disclose the victim’s name in public in accordance with Hong Kong’s privacy law. ■ Xianne Arcangel / VC/BM, GMA News / June 26, 2013 / Updated 9:17 PM
months editing this film than I have in 20 years.” In the long run, Vargas—who got a standing ovation at Friday’s premiere from friends, relatives and former Post colleagues—hopes “Documented” can help reshape a debate that dwells obsessively on border security. “I would argue that immigration is the most controversial, yet least understood issue in America,” he said. “The question I (often) get asked is, ‘Why don’t you just make yourself legal?’ There isn’t a process for somebody like me to get legal. People don’t understand the process and the issue is so complex.” ■ Robert Macpherson / Agence France-Presse / June 22, 2013 / 2:40 PM
Three Pinoys, one Pakistani hurt in freak accident in UAE
Three Filipinos and a Pakistani were injured after a vehicle reversed into them in the United Arab Emirates. A report on Khaleej Times said the three Filipinos, who included a nineyear-old boy and his parents, suffered moderate to minor injuries. Also injured in last Wednesday’s accident at Al Fisht was a pregnant Pakistani woman, the report said. The four are under supervision at a nearby hospital. A separate report on Gulf News
said the driver has been arrested and reportedly admitted negligence. An investigation showed the driver of the car was reversing but did not notice the four standing behind the vehicle. The confused driver stepped on the accelerator and hit the four. Police Captain Abdul Rahman Khatir, director of Media and Traffic Awareness at the Sharjah Police, reminded drivers to be careful in busy public and residential areas. ■ LBG, GMA News / June
22, 2013 / 8:24 PM
IMMIGRATION / OFNEWS
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
Despite anti-human trafficking efforts, PHL retains Tier 2 ranking in US report THE United States said despite the Philippines’ efforts to fight human trafficking, the country still does not quite meet the standard, and thus retains its Tier 2 ranking in the US’ 2013 Trafficking in Persons Report. “Despite making significant efforts to combat trafficking, the Government of the Philippines does not yet fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking, the TIP Report noted,” said a statement by the United States Embassy in the Philippines on Thursday. The Philippines was also given a Tier 2 ranking in the TIP report last year. “Countries whose governments do not fully comply with the TVPA’s minimum standards but are making significant efforts to bring themselves into
compliance with those standards” belong to Tier 2, according to the US. The 2013 report, released on Wednesday, monitors the compliance of countries in relation to standards in fighting human trafficking. According to the report, syndicates trafficking in persons have become techsavvy, using email and social media to victimize overseas Filipino workers (OFWs). The 2013 TIP also said that even if the Philippines has been “making significant efforts” to fight human trafficking, the country did not make “significant progress in addressing the underlying weaknesses in its judicial systems” in relation to holding traffickers accountable. The report also gave nine recommendations for the Philippine government to consider:
1) Increase efforts to investigate, prosecute, and convict an increased number of both labor and sex trafficking offenders implicated in the trafficking of Filipinos within the country and abroad; 2) address the significant backlog of trafficking cases by developing mechanisms to track and monitor the status of cases filed with the Department of Justice (DOJ) and those under trial in the courts; 3) conduct immediate and rigorous investigations of complaints of trafficking complicity by government officials, and ensure accountability for leaders that fail to address trafficking-related corruption within their areas of jurisdiction; 4) ensure the government’s armed forces or paramilitary groups supported by the government do not recruit or use
children; continue to strengthen antitrafficking training for police recruits, frontline officers, and police investigators; 5) increase the number of government officials whose duties are dedicated solely to anti-trafficking activities; continue and improve collaboration between victim service organizations and law enforcement authorities with regard to law enforcement operations; 6) make efforts to expand the use of victim processing centers to additional localities to improve identification of adult victims and allow for victims to be processed and assisted in a safe environment after a rescue operation; 7) examine “off-loading” policies to ensure this practice does not interfere with individuals’ freedom of movement; increase victim shelter resources and
expand the government shelter system to assist a greater number of trafficking victims, including male victims of sex and labor trafficking; 8) increase funding for the DOJ’s witness protection program and facilitate the entry of trafficking victims into the program; increase efforts to identify trafficking victims in destination countries and to pursue criminal investigation and prosecution of their traffickers; and 9) develop and implement programs aimed at reducing the demand for commercial sex acts, including child sex tourism. The Embassy statement noted that the US “looks forward to the day when all people may be freed from the shackles of modern day slavery.” ■ Gian C. Geronimo / VVP, GMA News / June 20, 2013 / 5:20 PM
OWWA counsels OFW rape victim in Kuwait
Gov’t to prioritize women as welfare officers abroad after ‘sex for flight’ scandal THE Philippine government will prioritize deploying female welfare officers abroad after the country’s male embassy and local officials were accused of sexually abusing distressed overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in the Middle East. Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario on Monday calls on other overseas Filipino workers who became victims of alleged sex for repatriation scheme by some PHL embassy and labor officials in the Middle East to come out in the open and help resolve the case. Danny Pata Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said both the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) both agreed to first accommodate female applicants for welfare offices abroad. “‘Yung mga welfare officers po kasi natin, sila ho ‘yung mga nagpapatakbo po ‘nung mga welfare center, kung saan ho dumudulog at nagse-stay ‘yung ating
mga runaway na mga OFWs. So mga babae po ‘yung bibigyan ng priority,” she said. She added that once employed, the welfare officers will act as “house mothers” to OFWs in need of assistance. The government reached this decision after two Philippine embassy and labor officials in Kuwait and Jordan were accused of demanding sexual favors from OFWs who sought repatriation from the Middle East. At least three OFWs have already come forward and executed affidavits to confirm the existence of a “sex for flight” scheme in some Philippine embassies and labor offices. The DFA has already launched a probe on these accusations and ordered some envoys from the Middle East to fly back to the Philippines to shed light on the “sex for flight” allegations. Some 2.3 million OFWs are currently working in the Middle East, mostly in Saudi Arabia. ■ Andreo Calonzo / BM, GMA News /June 25, 2013 / 9:01 PM
THE overseas Filipino worker gang raped by Kuwaiti police officers is undergoing counseling, the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) disclosed on Wednesday. “Ang ating welfare officer ay handang magbigay ng stress debriefing or psychosocio counseling dito sa ating OFW. Tinitignan, minomonitor [nila] kung ano na ‘yung kanyang konsidyon,” OWWA administrator Carmelita Dimzon was quoted as saying in a television report aired at GMA’s “24 Oras.” “Ako ay galit na galit sa ganyan (rape). Masyado akong nalulungkot at naaapektuhan sa mga ganitong pangyayari, siyempre babae ako e,” Dimzon opined. The OWWA head noted that the suspects, who were two Kuwaiti policemen and two other officers of the police station, are now under custody while the investigation continues. The OFW victim is determined to pursue the case, Department of Foreign Affairs
spokesperson Raul Hernadez said in the same report. “She is determined to pursue the case against perpetrators. We are committed to extend[ing] all necessary assistance to her so that justice is served,” Hernandez said, noting that the agency has provided the victim with a legal counsel. Melissa (not her real name) heard the suspects knock on her door on the night of June 17. When she opened the door, they asked for her civil identification. As she went to her room to get the civil ID, Melissa was allegedly followed by one of the Kuwaiti policemen, who locked the door and raped her. “Umiiyak po ako. Paano po ako makakapanglaban hindi ko po alam ang gagawin ko dahil natatakot naman po ako na ako’y saktan nila,” Melissa said in the same newscast. Priority on women welfare ofﬁcers. Meanwhile, the OWWA administrator noted that the government will send more women
welfare officers in Saudi Arabia to handle sexual abuse cases. “Mas madaling maka-relate sa babae, hindi sila mahihiyang magsalaysay kung ano ang nangyari. Kung lalaki ‘yan, siyempre mangingimi ‘yan,” Dimzon explained. Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said that the Philippine government will prioritize deployment of female welfare officers abroad after the country’s male embassy officials were accused of sexually abusing distressed OFWs in the Middle East. Not the ﬁrst OFW rape case in Kuwait. Last year, an OFW also accused a Kuwaiti cop of rape and physical injury. The victim had multiple lacerations on her neck and cheeks purportedly from the incident. In 2009, another Filipina household service worker cried rape. The accused was her employer in Kuwait. Aside from rape, she also claimed to have been physically abused by her employer. ■ Rouchelle R.
Dinglasan / VC, GMA NEWS / June 26, 2013 / 9:16 PM
PHL to send female welfare officers to MidEast in light of sex abuse scandal THE government will be deploying female welfare officers to its labor offices abroad, particularly in the Middle East, where several Philippine labor and embassyy officials have been accused of committing sexual abuses on female Filipino migrant workers. According to Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz, the female welfare officers will be tasked to oversee distressed female overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) — the supposed victims of the abuses — and assist them in their cases. “More female officers pagdating sa management ng ward and ‘yung action officer pag may actual case na na pinafile,” Baldoz said Wednesday. Baldoz said she has already instructed Overseas Workers Welfare Administration administrator Carmelita Dimzon regarding
the deployment of female welfare officers in Riyadh and other countries in the Middle East. An inventory will be conducted by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) to identify how many female welfare officers will be needed for the deployment. At present, there are female welfare officers who are assigned in other parts of Middle East such as Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Qatar, Jeddah, Dubai and Oman. Baldoz, however, clarified that male welfare officers in the Middle East will not be asked to come home. “Puede naman ang lead would be the female tapos tutulungan sila ng mga lalaki,” she said. An exposé of Akbayan party-list Walden Bello last week has prompted a sweeping government investigation of sex abuses committed against Filipino workers.
Baldoz said the fact-finding committee tasked to investigate the alleged sexual abuses will fly to Riyadh this weekend, and later to Jordan and Kuwait. “I thought that we can prioritize KSA [Kingdom of Saudi Arabia] kasi may complainant,” she said. “They will proceed as originally planned.” Baldoz said the purpose of the investigation is to determine the administrative liability of the officials. “The preliminary investigation will determine the prima facie case based on the documents,” Baldoz said. “If there is a case, we will then proceed with the hearing and then come out with the findings and the resolution.” She added they are hoping to “finish everything in two months.” ■ KBK, GMA News
/ June 26, 2013 / 9:05 PM
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HEALTH and Lifestyle
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
‘I cannot run away from my hay fever’ HE sprinted his way into the record books, but athlete Marlon Devonish can’t escape his hay fever. Marlon, 33, is one of Britain’s most successful sportsmen. He was part of Britain’s Olympic gold medal-winning relay team at Athens in 2004 and has received an MBE for his contribution to British sport. To get there, Marlon has had to overcome numerous sporting injuries, including a hamstring injury in 2000 that stopped him from competing in the Sydney Olympics that year. But what many people don’t know is that he’s also had to learn to manage severe hay fever. “It’s something I’ve had to deal with since childhood,” says Marlon. “It runs in the family.” Around 20% of Britons have hay fever. Like most of them, Marlon expects seasonal bouts of sniffing and sneezing. Unlike most people, he has gold medals that depend on his physical condition, especially in the summer racing season. “I get the usual symptoms of itchy eyes, nose and throat, but I also get exercise-induced asthma. Because I’m so allergic to the pollen in the air, it causes my chest to tighten when I run. So if I don’t manage my hay fever carefully, it can seriously affect my performance on the track. “I have to get clearance every year from the IAAF (International Association
of Athletics Federations) so that while I’m competing, I can use an inhaler to control my asthma. My hay fever is at its worst at the height of summer when there is more pollen in the air. This is when I have to be most vigilant with my medication. “I don’t have to be so careful in the winter when I’m not competing, but I still have to monitor the condition closely.” Eating well. Despite living with hay fever since childhood, Marlon has never let it hold him back from his active lifestyle. “I used to suffer badly when I was younger because I’d rub my eyes until they were red raw, but it never stopped my love of sport. When I was at school, I used to get involved in everything I could. “My favourite sports were basketball and football which, unfortunately, I don’t really have time to play now because my training schedule is so hectic.”
As an Olympic athlete, Marlon trains six days a week to stay at the peak of his physical and technical fitness. He also keeps a close watch on his diet. “It’s so important that I eat well when training. As a sprinter, protein is a vital part of my diet because when you sprint, you tear your muscles on a microscopic level. You then need to replenish the protein in your system for muscle building. So I eat lots of meat for protein and carbs for energy.” Keeping in shape. Marlon has always kept a close eye on his health and fitness. “My mum’s a nurse, so from a young age I was made very aware of my health. Apart from hay fever, the other problem that runs in the family is high blood pressure. My gran has it. She’s had to control her diet and cut down on saturated fat and salt. “I’m aware this is something I may have to watch out for when I get older. Marlon thinks the 2012 Olympics will have a positive effect on the UK’s health. “I hope it will act as a catalyst to improve our lifestyles. I don’t think they’re particularly great in the UK. You only have to turn on the TV to see the programmes about our unhealthy lifestyles, from booze culture to obesity. “After the event is over, we’ll be left with some great sporting facilities, which will hopefully inspire kids and adults alike to keep themselves healthy.” ■ NHS Choices
Five tips to reduce hay fever symptoms YOUR lifestyle can affect how severe your hay fever symptoms are. A recent report, based on a survey of more than 2,000 people with hay fever, found that lifestyle factors, such as stress and exercise, can have a major impact on hay fever. Follow these tips to stop the sneezing. 1. Calm down. Try to reduce your stress levels. The survey showed a clear link between stress and the severity of hay fever symptoms. Almost seven out of ten stressed-out hay fever sufferers rate their symptoms as unbearable or debilitating. As stress levels drop, symptoms become milder. 2. Exercise more. Regular exercise can improve your hay fever. The survey found that people with hay fever who exercise most have the mildest symptoms. Exercise will help reduce your stress levels, too.
Aim to do 150 minutes (two and a half hours) of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise, such as cycling and fast walking, every week. However, during hay fever season, it’s best to avoid exercising outdoors when the pollen count is high. This is generally first thing in the morning and early evening. Instead, exercise in late morning or afternoon when pollen counts tend to be lowest. If pollen counts are really high, stick to indoor exercise, for example at your local gym or swimming pool. 3. Eat well. The survey suggests that people with hay fever who eat a healthy diet are less likely to get severe symptoms. Eat a varied, balanced diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables, but be aware than some healthy foods can make hay fever symptoms worse. Foods that can worsen hay fever symptoms include
apples, tomatoes, stoned fruits, melons, bananas and celery. 4. Cut down on alcohol. Watch how much you drink at your summer picnics! Alcohol worsens hay fever. Beer, wine and other spirits contain histamine, the chemical that sets off allergy symptoms in your body. As well as making you more sensitive to pollen, alcohol also dehydrates you, making your symptoms seem worse. 5. Sleep well. Try to avoid too many late nights during the hay fever season. The survey found that people with hay fever who get a good night’s sleep tend to have the mildest symptoms. Just one in eight (13%) people who had at least seven hours sleep a night reported severe symptoms, compared with one in five (21%) who regularly had five hours sleep or less a night. ■ NHS Choices
Hay fever treatments THERE are a variety of treatments for hay fever including tablets, eyedrops, nasal sprays and injections. Finding which works best for you will help you stay symptom-free through the summer. Antihistamines. Histamine is a chemical released by your body after it’s been exposed to a trigger such as pollen. It produces symptoms of hay fever such as sneezing or itchy, watery eyes. Antihistamines block the action of histamine in the body. According to John Collard, clinical director of Allergy UK, this then reduces the symptoms of an allergic reaction. “Older-style sedating antihistamines, such as Piriton, are taken three or four times a day and can make you drowsy,” says Collard. “Non-sedating antihistamines, such as loratadine, are only taken once a day and don’t cause drowsiness. Different people find different brands work best for them.” As well as tablets, antihistamines are available as nasal sprays, eye drops or liquids to be swallowed. Most are available as over-the-counter drugs. Steroid nasal sprays. Steroid nasal sprays are more effective than antihistamines at treating some symptoms of hay fever, such as a blocked nose. They just work on the nose and hardly any of the steroid is absorbed by the body. There are almost no side effects with a normal dose. You can use steroid nasal sprays for long periods of time without any risk. They take several days to act and need be taken continually for several weeks as their effect builds up with time. If you have other symptoms, steroid nasal sprays can be used in addition to other treatments, for example for itchy and watery eyes.
Cromoglycates. Cromoglycates are not antihistamines. They’re a type of hay fever medicine mainly available as eye drops but you can also get them as nasal sprays. If antihistamines aren’t working on their own, you can use cromoglycates as well. This medication has few side effects and works on specific areas such as the nose or eyes. Hay fever injections. Immunotherapy or desensitisation treatment may work if your symptoms are severe and are not controlled by other hay fever medicines. If you want this type of treatment, you need to go to a specialist allergy clinic after referral from your GP. Initially you have to have an injection every week or fortnight at the clinic and then regularly for up to two years. It involves pollen being injected into your body, so you may have an allergic response. There have been a few cases of severe reactions to desensitisation injections. They should only be given in specialist centres and only if your symptoms can’t be controlled by other methods. Complementary medicine. Although there is little evidence-based research in this area, some people believe these therapies work for them. Butterbur, also known as ‘bog rhubarb’, is a herbal remedy that is believed to have the same effect as an antihistamine but without causing drowsiness. Echinacea, usually used to treat colds, is said to reduce your sensitivity to allergens. Euphrasia (or Eyebright) comes as eye drops and is sometimes used for symptoms of hay fever such as watery or itchy eyes. ■ NHS Choices
HEALTH and Lifestyle food
A food allergy is when the body’s immune system reacts abnormally to specific foods. Allergic reactions are often mild, but they can sometimes be very serious. In children, common food allergies include being allergic to milk and eggs. In adults, allergies to fruits and vegetables are more common. Nut allergies, such as being allergic to peanut, are relatively common in both children and adults. Symptoms of a food allergy can affect different areas of the body at the same time. Some common symptoms include: • an itchy sensation inside the mouth, throat or ears • raised itchy red skin rash (this is known asurticaria, hives or “nettle rash”) • swelling of the face, around the eyes, lips, tongue and the roof of the mouth (this is known as angioedema) Anaphylaxis. In the most serious cases, a person has a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis), which can be lifethreatening. If you suspect that somebody is experiencing thesymptoms of anaphylaxis, such as breathing difficulties and swollen lips, immediately call 999 for an ambulance and tell the operator that you think the person has anaphylaxis. What causes food allergies? Food allergies are caused when the immune system (the body’s defence against infection) mistakenly treats proteins found in food as a threat to the body, when in fact they should be harmless. It then releases a number of chemicals to prevent what it sees as an infection
A skin prick test is usually the first test recommended by a doctor for a suspected allergy
taking hold. It is these chemicals that cause the symptoms of an allergic reaction. Any food could cause an allergic reaction, but there are certain foods that are responsible for most food allergies. In children, the foods that most commonly cause an allergic reaction are: • milk • eggs • peanuts • tree nuts • fish • shellfish The majority of children with a food allergy have a background of eczema (an allergic skin condition) during infancy. The worse their eczema is and the earlier it started, the more likely they are to have a food allergy. In adults, the foods that most commonly cause an allergic reaction are: • some types of fruit such as apples, pears, kiwi fruit and peaches • some types of vegetables such as potatoes, carrots, celery and parsnip • crustaceans (shellfish), such as crab, lobster and prawns • tree nuts, such as walnuts, brazil nuts, almonds and pistachios • peanuts • fish
It is still uncertain why people develop allergies to food, although often people with a food allergy have other allergic conditions such as asthma, hay fever and eczema. Types of food allergies. The most common type of food allergy is triggered by an antibody called immunoglobulin E. This is known as IgE-mediated food allergy and tends to cause rapid symptoms, often within seconds or minutes of exposure to certain foods. There is a greater risk of anaphylaxis with this type of allergy. Allergic reactions not caused by immunoglobulin E (non IgE mediated food allergy) tend to cause symptoms hours or even days after exposure to certain foods. This type of allergy is often difficult to diagnose. Treatment. There is no treatment to cure a food allergy. The best way of preventing an allergic reaction is to identify the type of food that causes the allergy and then avoid it in future. Read more about identifying foods which cause allergies(these are known as allergens). However, avoid making any radical changes to your child’s diet, such as
cutting dairy products, without first consulting with your GP. A type of medication called an antihistamine can help relieve the symptoms of a mild to moderate allergic reaction. A type of medication called adrenaline is aneffective treatment for anaphylaxis. People with a food allergy are often given a device, known as an auto-injector pen, which contains dosages of adrenaline that can be used in case of emergencies. When to seek medical advice. If you suspect you or your child may have a food allergy, it’s very important to ask for a professional diagnosis from your GP, who can refer you to an allergy clinic. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence has also released a short guide for parents who are concerned that their child has a food allergy. Many parents mistakenly assume their child has a food allergy when in fact their symptoms are due to a completely different condition. There are commercial allergy-testing kits available but their use is not recommended.
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition Many kits are based on unsound scientific principles and even if they are reliable, it is best to have the results interpreted by a health professional. Who is affected. Most food allergies affect younger children aged under the age of three. It is estimated that around one child in every 14 children of this age has one or more food allergies. Most children will “outgrow” food allergies to milk, eggs, soya and wheat by the time they start school. Peanut allergies are usually more persistent. An estimated four out of five children with peanut allergies remain allergic to peanuts for the rest of their life. Food allergies that develop during adulthood, or persist into adulthood, are likely to be lifelong allergies. For reasons that are unclear, rates of food allergies have risen sharply in the last 20 years. However, deaths from anaphylaxisrelated food reactions are now very rare. There were only two reported deaths related to food allergies in England and Wales during 2010. ■ NHS Choices
Is it a food allergy or food intolerance? AROUND one or two people out of every 100 in the UK have a food allergy, but food intolerance is more common. Genuine food allergy is rare. About 2% of the population (and 8% of children under the age of three) are affected. What is a food allergy? A food allergy is a rapid and potentially serious response to a food by your immune system. It can trigger classic allergy symptoms such as
How to tell the difference
Food allergy: • Symptoms come on within seconds or minutes of eating the food • In extreme cases it can be lifethreatening • Even a tiny trace of the food can cause a reaction • It is easily diagnosed with tests Food intolerance: • Symptoms come on more slowly and are long-lasting. They mainly involve the digestive system • It’s never life-threatening • A reasonable portion of food is usually needed to cause a reaction, although some people can be sensitive to small amounts • You may crave the problem food • lt’s difficult to diagnose as there are only a few reliable tests
a rash, wheezing and itching. The most common food allergies among adults are to fish and shellfish and nuts – including peanuts, walnuts, hazelnuts and brazil nuts. Children often have allergies to milk and eggs as well as to peanuts, other nuts and fish. What is a food intolerance? Food intolerances are more common than food allergies. The symptoms of food intolerance tend to come on more slowly, often many hours after eating the problem food. Typical symptoms include bloating and stomach cramps. It’s possible to be intolerant to several different foods. This can make it difficult to identify which foods are causing the problem. Food intolerances can also be difficult to tell apart from other digestive disorders that can produce similar symptoms, such as inflammatory bowel disease, gastrointestinal obstructions or irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Lactose intolerance. Lactose intolerance, sometimes known as dairy intolerance, occurs when your body can’t digest lactose. Lactose is in milk and dairy products such as yoghurts and soft cheeses. The main symptoms are diarrhoea and stomach pain. In most cases, your GP can diagnose lactose intolerance by looking at your symptoms and medical history.
Could it be another type of food intolerance or condition? Sometimes it isn’t clear which food is causing a problem. The only reliable way of identifying such a food intolerance is through an exclusion diet, where you cut out certain foods from your diet one at a time to see if there’s an effect. Coeliac disease is a common digestive condition where a person has an adverse reaction to gluten. However, coeliac disease is not an allergy or an intolerance to gluten. It is an autoimmune condition where the immune system mistakes substances found inside gluten as a threat to the body and attacks them.
Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye and barley that damages the intestine of people with coeliac disease. Symptoms include diarrhoea, bloating and weight loss. Coeliac disease can be accurately diagnosed with a blood test and biopsy. About one out of 100 people in the UK have coeliac disease, but it’s estimated that around half a million aren’t diagnosed. Treatments for food allergy and food intolerance. In the case of a food allergy, you’ll have to avoid the food you’re allergic to. You may be able to eat the cooked versions without any problems, for example with fruit or vegetable allergies.
With lactose intolerance, you’ll have to reduce the amount of dairy food that you eat. With other forms of food intolerance, you’ll have to stop eating the food for a while, or possibly for life. With the autoimmune condition coeliac disease, you must avoid gluten for life. In all cases, always read food labels carefully, and learn where your problem food may be used as an ingredient in other foods. For more advice on your diet, ask your GP to refer you to an NHS dietitian. ■ NHS Choices
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July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
Which govt agencies had the most number of graft cases filed against them? MANILA, Philippines - Which government agencies had the most number of graft cases filed against them? According to the Office of the Ombudsman, various local government units (LGUs) taken together as one tops the list. Crime-fighting Philippine National Police (PNP) and security-focused Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) are the next two in the list of government agencies that had the most number of graft cases filed against them before the Ombudsman in 2012. The report, released Thursday by the Ombudman’s Finance and Management Information Office, listed two other notoriously corrupt agencies, the Bureau of Customs and the Department of Public Works and Highways, at number 10 and 13 respectively. Of the total 2,669 cases filed against local government officials last year, 1,426 were filed with the OMB-Central Office; 681 with OMB-Luzon; 207 with OMBVisayas; 353 with OMB-Mindanao; and two with the OMB’s Military and Other Local Enforcement Offices (OMB-Moleo). The first and second ranking in the 2012 list is the same as in 2011. A total of 3,852 cases were filed against LGU officials in 2011. A total of 1,415 cases were filed against the PNP in 2012 as opposed to 1,128 cases filed in 2011. The list of top 20 government agencies with the most number of cases filed in 2012:
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 20.
LGUs Philippine National Police (PNP) Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Dept. of Education (DepEd) Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Commission on Higher Education (CHED) Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Dept. of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Dept. of Justice (DOJ) Bureau of Customs (BOC) Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) Dept. of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA) Dept. of Health (DOH) Philippine Postal Corporation (PPC) Land Transportation Office (LTO) Dept. of Agriculture (DA) Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA) National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) Dept. of Finance (DOF) Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR)
On the other hand, the bottom 35 agencies with the least number of cases filed in 2012 were: West Visayas State University (WVSU), Tiburcio Tancino Memorial Institute of Science and Technology (TTMIST), Social Security System (SSS), Siquijor State University (SSU), Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth), Parole and Probation Administration (PPA), Nueva Ecija University of Science and Technology (NEUST), Negros Oriental State University (NOSU), Naval Water District (NWD), National Home Mortgage
2,669 1,415 332 276 197 141 139 121 90 81 77 74 73 73 69 58 57 55 49 39 38 38
Finance Corporation (NHMFC), Mindanao University of Science and Technology (MUST), Mindanao State UniveristyLanao del Norte College of Arts and Trades (MSU-LNCAT), Mindanao State University-Marawi City (MSU-Marawi City), Midsayap Water District (MWD), Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA), Mactan-Cebu International Airport Authority (MCIAA), Koronadal Water District (KWD), Duty Free Philippines (DFP), Dumangas-Barotac Nuevo Water District (DBNWD), Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP), and Bacolod City
College (BCC). Only one case was filed against officials of these agencies in 2012. There were only two cases filed in 2012 against officials of the Veterans Memorial Medical Center (VMMC), University of Antique (UA), Tawi-Tawi Regional Agricultural College (TRAC), Philippine State College of AeronauticsLapu-Lapu City, Cebu (PhilSCA-Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu), National Police Commission (Napolcom), National Food Authority (NFA), National Economic Development Authority (NEDA), Metro Cebu Water District (MCWD), Eastern Visayas State University (EVSU), and Calbayog City Water District (CCWD). Meantime, only three cases were filed in 2012 against officers of the Sugar Regulatory Administration (SRA), Quedancor, Land Registration Authority
(LRA), and the Commission on Human Rights (CHR). Significantly, certain agencies with only one case filed against their officers in 2011 moved up in the 2012 list. They are: Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP), with 36 cases filed against its officers; Bureau of Local Government Finance (BLGF), 29; Government Service Insurance System (GSIS), 18; Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), 17; Philippine National Oil Company (PNOC), 17; Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), 8; Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), 7; Senate of the Philippines, 6; and CHR, 3. The Supreme Court had 27 cases, while the House of Representatives had 17. ■ Jaime Sinapit / InterAksyon.com / June 27, 2013 / 12:37 PM
Male companion of Pinay death convict in China also meted death sentence but with reprieve
THE Filipino companion of the Filipina who was sentenced to die by China’s Supreme People’s Court was meted also the death penalty but with two-year reprieve, meaning it can be reduced to life imprisonment if he displays good behavior while in detention. The Filipina, 35, who entered China from Dubai through a connecting flight in Hong Kong was apprehended at the Hangzhou International Airport on January 25, 2011 after authorities found 6.198 in her luggage, Foreign Affairs spokesman Raul Hernandez said. She was arrested with a male Filipino companion, 27, who was caught carrying 6.171 of heroin. The Filipina maintained her innocence throughout the course of the trial, Hernandez said.
Appeal of President Aquino. The Philippines on Thursday appealed to the Chinese government to spare the life of a female Filipina drug mule who was sentenced to die for smuggling more than six kilos of heroin to China in January 2011. President Benigno Aquino III conveyed the request to commute her sentence to life imprisonment through a letter to Chinese President Xi Jinping which was coursed through the Chinese Embassy in Manila and the Philippines’ Embassy in Beijing. The death penalty, usually done through lethal injection, will be carried out anytime within today, June 27, and July 2, Foreign Affairs spokesman Raul Hernandez said. The Supreme People’s Court in Beijing affirmed a lower court decision, sentencing
the Filipino national for drug trafficking, on June 26. Other drug couriers. If the execution pushes through, she will be the fifth Filipino drug courier to be punished by death in China since 2011. Hernandez said Manila respects the China’s decision but said the Philippine government continues to exert efforts to save the life of the Filipino. “The Philippines respects Chinese law and their verdict of the Supreme People’s Court on the case. The Philippine government itself has a strong anti-illegal drug policy and is closely cooperating with law enforcement agencies in China and in other countries on efforts against drug trafficking,” Hernandez said. Hernandez declined to identify the
Filipinos as families of the drug convicts appealed for privacy. Arrangements are being by the Filipino woman’s family for them to depart for China at the soonest possible time, Hernandez said. Drug smuggling. Drug smuggling by Filipinos to China and other Asian countries continued unabated, indicating that many of them are unfazed by the death sentences that have been carried out by Beijing on Filipinos. Filipino women and lately even men are reportedly being hired by West African drug syndicates to smuggle drugs mainly in Asia and South America - sometimes by ingesting it. In China alone, Hernandez said there are a total of 213 drug-related cases involving
Filipino nationals. Of this figure, 28 resulted in death penalty convictions with 2 year reprieve, 67 in life imprisonment and 107 termed imprisonment while 10 are still pending in courts. A person caught in possession of illegal drugs in the amount of more than 50 grams is meted the death penalty in China if convicted. Hernandez appealed anew to Filipinos not to allow themselves to be involved in drug trafficking and to be extremely cautious when dealing with strangers in airports and other areas of transit. “We call for personal vigilance and responsibility on the part of Filipinos who travel abroad,” he said. ■ Michaela del Callar /
VVP, GMA News / June 27, 2013 / 4:00 PM
Use P18,000 to set up staging areas, fast-track people’s housing program - group MANILA, Philippines - The P18,000 housing rental subsidy government intends to give 20,000 informal settler families living along waterways in Metro Manila would be better used to set up staging areas on land already identified as permanent relocation sites by the people themselves, a group said Wednesday. At the same time, the Kampanya para sa Makataong Pamumuhay, or KAMP, took government to task for not acting on the permanent housing proposals submitted by urban poor groups and civil society. KAMP bills itself as a multi-sectoral network working for universal and transformative social protection towards attaining social justice. The relocation proposals, at least
eight of which KAMP head convenor Anna Maria Nemenzo said were submitted in April last year by urban poor groups it has been working with, were submitted under a five-year, P50-billion housing program, supposed to run from 2011-2015, for 104,000 informal settler families living in
Houses of an informal settler community crowd the banks of a waterway in P. Casal, Manila. Photo by Krisken Jones ©InterAksyon.com
danger zones in the National Capital Region. “The fund (is) … intended for near-site, in-city relocation plans developed and approved by civil society organizations and ISFs identified as beneficiaries,” Nemenzo said in a statement. The program mandated the Department of Interior and Local Government to lead the formation of a technical working group and draw up a joint memorandum circular to provide policy guidelines for the utilization of the fund, together with the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council, National Housing Authority, and Social Housing Finance Corporation, among others. However, Nemenzo said, “it is only now that the agencies are scurrying to find
solutions to protect the lives of thousands of families living in eight identified priority waterways in Pasig City, San Juan City, Tullahan, Manggahan Floodway, Maricaban Creek, Tripa de Gallina, Estero Maypajo, and Sunog Apog Estero.” “These agencies act as if the informal settlers are the problem and are to blame for continuing to stay in danger zones, when it is the government that has been remiss in its duties,” Nemenzo said, noting that the urban poor groups “worked hard on their plans, even complying with technical requirements imposed by the DILG and housing agencies.” “They are not waiting for house rental subsidies, they are waiting for the implementation of the P50-billion housing
program,” Nemenzo stressed. Instead of letting the informal settlers look for temporary housing for the next 12 months, Nemenzo said the government “should use the subsidy to provide staging areas on lands already identified in people’s proposals as permanent relocation sites.” “It is lamentable that up to now, not a single people’s proposal has been carried out,” Nemenzo said. “Not even a single housing unit has been built as a result of these proposals.” She also questioned why Vice President Jejomar Binay, who chairs the HUDCC, has not signed the JMC, which had been approved by the technical working group several months ago. ■ InterAksyon.com / June
26, 2013 / 11:52 AM
“Wash down Pure Foods Corned Beef with Red Horse Beer.”
CELEBRITY, SHOWBIZ & ENTERTAINMENT SCOOP
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
TV5 brings Pinoys closer to the stars in Independence Day Parade
THE Big Apple became the appropriate setting for one of the biggest gatherings of Filipinos held in the U.S. in recent years. On June 2, 2013, over a hundredthousand Filipinos from the East Coast and surrounding states flocked to Madison Avenue to witness the grandestever Independence Day Parade mounted in New York City. It was a momentous
event made even more remarkable by the first ever participation of the Philippines’ fastest growing network - TV5. Excitement was palpable when three of the Kapatid Network’s brightest stars - Derek Ramsay, Sharon Cuneta, and Aga Muhlach - took to the streets riding a huge, red and white TV5 float while greeting the ecstatic Filipino crowd.
But that was all but a prelude to the jampacked, star-studded affair. After the parade, Derek Ramsay kicked off the program with a special song number,wherein he also distributed roses to audience members. As if his serenade didn’t make the crowd swoon enough, the Kapatid hunk also facilitated a game which required the participation of four lucky girls from the audience. Die-hard fans of Sharon Cuneta also had a field day when the Megastar appeared on stage to belt out her signature classics “Kahit Maputi Na Ang Buhok Ko”, “Maging Sino Ka Man”, and “Sana’y Wala nang Wakas”. The audience became even more delighted when she was joined by matinee idol Aga Muhlach in performing a duet of the classic ballad “Bakit Ngayon Ka Lang?” TV5 also reached the pinnacle of innovation by setting up an augmented reality booth, the first by any Filipino network. This new technology placed U.S.-based Pinoys in a virtual, augmented environment where they were able to interact with a bevy of Kapatid stars
great success. Joining Ritz is Kapatid hunk actor Daniel Matsunaga, who will play the role of Andrew, the eldest son of Anthony Cadiz (Christopher de Leon) and the most focused and business-minded of the Cadiz brothers. Other members of the cast include veteran actress Boots Anson-Roa, the original body-beautiful Vivan Velez, and very promising actors Vin Abrenica and Victor Silayan. How did Maita and Andrew cross each other’s paths? Will Maita be able to seek out a better life for her grandmother and the real love that she deserves? Find out on the newest mini-series that is sure to set primetime on fire, Misibis Bay premiering this July, on KapatidTV5. ■
TV5’s little angel Eula Caballero is all grown up as she celebrates her 18th birthday. The drama princess, who turned 18 last May 23, celebrated her foray into womanhood with a grand debut held last June 6 at the Oasis Events Place. Invited to the event are Eula’s close friends and family. The lead star of TV5’s primetime fantaserye Cassandra: Warrior Angel looked every bit like a princess as she made her grand entrance wearing a
NCAA begins its 89th Season on AksyonTV International starting June 22 EXPECT the brightest collegiate stars in the Philippines to shine in the 89th Season of the NCAA starting Saturday, June 22 . AksyonTV International, the sports channel of TV5, will be bringing you the exciting NCAA action throughout the
season with its crop of talented anchors led by Aaron Atayde, James Velasquez, LA Mumar and Nikko Ramos. Expert analysis will be provided by Dominic Uy, Richard del Rosario, Boybits Victoria and Ronnie Magsanoc. Coach Ryan Gregorio, Willie Miller and coach Olsen Racela will
Coaches of participating teams in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Season 89 share pose for the photographers after the presscon last Tuesday, June 18 at SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City. (From left to right) Caloy Garcia of Letran, Topex Robinson of San Sebastian, Boyet Fernandez of San Beda, Atoy Co of Mapua, Aric Del Rosario of Perpetual Help, Gerry Esplana of Emilio Aguinaldo College, Bonnie Tan of Lyceum, Koy Banal of Arellano, assistant coach Ricky Alcantara, in lieu of head coach Vergel Meneses of Jose Rizal University and Gabby Velasco of host St. Benilde.
and now it’s a reality” shares Consul General Mario L. De Leon Jr. It was also a surreal experience for the people behind the scenes as Pilipinas Global Network (PGN)/TV5 International President Claro Ramirez also shared, “We are delighted to see our Kapatids here in New York, and for bringing our biggest stars closer to them. We hope to be able to do this every year.” Filipinos in the United States can enjoy their favorite TV5 programs on Kapatid TV5 and Aksyon TV International available via Dish Network. ■
Eula Caballero celebrates 18th birthday with grand debut
Ritz Azul and Daniel Matsunaga reveal their real score on Misibis Bay WATCH TV5 Princess Ritz Azul and Kapatid hunk actor Daniel Matsunaga, as they make primetime viewing even hotter this July with the premiere of TV5’s one of a kind, 6-week mini-series, Misibis Bay. Set in the luxury island playground in Albay, Misibis Bay will definitely leave viewers in awe with its grand production, stellar cast and engaging story of a girl who dreams big and perseveres amidst all odds, to get what she deserves. Leading the cast of Misibis Bay is TV5 Princess Ritz Azul, who will play the role of Maita Ramirez, a slum girl who only dreams of providing a comfortable life for her ailing grandmother. Follow her story as she turns her life around from a story of misery to
ranging from screen legends Nora Aunor and Edu Manzano and fast-rising young stars like Eula Caballero and Ritz Azul. It allowed users of the booth to get up close and personal with their favorite TV5 stars without being actually with them. It was truly a grand way to usher in TV5’s participation in the momentous parade and judging from the elation of Filipinos living in the area, it was indeed a warm welcome. “We are happy that TV5 is here, and for making this year’s celebration the biggest ever. They said they will bring Aga, Derek, and Sharon,
also add their breakdown of the games. Mara Aquino, Rizza Diaz, and Ai Dela Cruz join the panel from the sidelines to give inside access to the teams. In the season’s curtain-raiser , hosts College of St. Benilde-Blazers will take on the defending champions, the San Beda Red Lions. Both teams will be parading new coaches—Gabby Velasco for the Blazers and Boyet Fernandez for the Red Lions. The Red Lions are expected to have the upper hand with last year’s core team still intact and with Coach Boyet bringing his experience as a champion coach in the PBA D-League. Rivals San Sebastian CollegeRecoletos and Colegio de San Juan Letran will face off against each other in the main event . Coach Topex Robinson is back at the helm of the Stags and he will be challenged by newly installed Rain or Shine Elasto Painters assistant coach Caloy Garcia and the Knights. Catch all the exciting collegiate action Saturday on AksyonTV International. ■
Eula shared her last dance with her Cassandra: Warrior Angel leading man JC de Vera.
stunning Ariel Agassang gown. Ang Latest’s host Divine Lee presided over the night’s program that included a twist on the debut’s traditional 18 roses and gifts. 18 Fortunes and 18 Warriors were instead introduced, representing the women and men closest to Eula’s heart. Her girlfriends Valeen Montenegro, Morisette Amon, Kiray Celis, and Tippy dos Santos offered their gifts and wishes to the birthday girl, while her Cassandra: Warrior Angel leading men JC de Vera, Albie Casino, and fellow Kapatid stars Martin Escudero were some of the Warriors who gave their roses and danced with the lovely debutante. The night closed with a touching message from Eula’s mother. Also present in Eula’s special night were Cassandra: Warrior Angel director Eric Quizon and TV5’s Head of Entertainment and Creative Services Perci Intalan. Like her character in her popular series, Eula faces new challenges as she enters a new chapter in her life. Despite that, she admits that she is more than ready to handle what the future has in store for her. “I’m really nervous,” she shared. “But I’m thankful din naman. I have my friends and family, and of course, my TV5 family to support me. I’m really thankful for that. ■
Eula was escorted by her mentor and Cassandra: Warrior Angel director Eric Quizon
CELEBRITY, SHOWBIZ & ENTERTAINMENT SCOOP
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
Exclusive contract ni Richard Gutierrez Did Ate Gay leave ‘Wowowillie’ because sa GMA Network, nagtapos na of Cacai Bautista and Joy Viado? KINUMPIRMA ng isang opisyal ng GMA Network na nagtapos na nitong Mayo ang kontrata ni Richard Gutierrez bilang exclusive Kapuso artist. Ang hindi pag-renew ng kontrata ay itinuturing pagkakataon ni Richard para makapagpahinga ng matagal matapos ang 11 taon ng tuloy-tuloy na pagtatrabaho. Kabilang sa mga planong gawin ng aktor habang wala sa showbiz ay kumuha ng filmmaking. “I plan to go to school, yes. Pero until now hindi pa ako nakakapag-decide kung saan talaga ako mag-aaral or anong school,” pahayag nito sa ulat ni Lhar Santiago sa Chika Minute ng 24 Orasnitong Miyerkules. “So ngayon, after this movie I’m gonna take a break and just see kung saan ko talaga gusto...” dagdag pa ng aktor na katambal ni Marian Rivera sa pelikulang My Lady Boss, Samantala, suportado naman ng GMA Network ang plano ni Richard na magbakasyon sa show business. Ayon kay Butch Raquel, Consultant
ng Corporate Communications ng GMA Network, nagpapasalamat sila sa magandang 11 taon na pananatili ng aktor bilang exclusive Kapuso talent at sinusuporatahan nila ang kanyang mga plano matapos ang nasabing break. Nagtapos ang kontrata ni Richard sa GMA noong Mayo 28, 2013 at kasalukuyan itong isang freelance actor. Narito ang kumpletong pahayag ng GMA Network: “The exclusive television contract of Richard Gutierrez with GMA Network expired on May 28, 2013. As mutually agreed upon by both parties, Richard is now a freelance actor for television and still has a live contract with GMA Films. We thank him for the 11 years of being an exclusive Kapuso and wish him well in his future endeavors.” Last project. Gayundin, ang huling proyekto ni Richard sa showbiz ay ang pelikula nitong “My Lady Boss” kung saan kasama nito ang GMA Primetime Queen na si Marian Rivera.
Ayon pa sa aktor, excited siya para sa pelikulang ito at sinigurado rin nitong magugustahan ng mga manonood ang kanilang pinagbibidahang pelikula ni Marian. “Feeling ko mag-eenjoy yong mga taong manonodo dahil ‘yon nga matagal nila kami hinid nakita ni Marian at itong pelikula namin sinigurado namin na matutuwa sila, mageenjoy sila ‘pag nanood sila,” ani Richard. Sarah Lahbati. Samantala, tumanggi naman si Chard na magsalita sa mga personal na tanong tulad ng balitang buntis umano ang kasintahan nitong si Sarah Lahbati. Wika pa ni Richard, “Sarah is doing well. She will come back soon and haharapin niya lahat ng mga balita. So abangan niyo na lang kung kelan siya babalik but I’m guaranteeing that she will come back soon and she will answer all the questions for you guys [the press.]” Kasalukuyang nasa Switzerland si Sarah. ■ Mac Macapendeg / FRJ, GMA News / June 26, 2013
/ 4:27 PM
After baring all in ‘Palitan’, Mara Lopez goes nude again in ‘Debosyon’
MANY people may think that Mara Lopez is still a newcomer in this industry after her daring starring role in Ato Bautista’s “Palitan” netted her a Best Actress award in last year’s Cinema One Originals film festival. But the 22-year-old daughter of former beauty queen turned bold star Maria Isabel Lopez has been acting since the age of 9. “I started very young for “Ang TV Kids 2” for ABS-CBN when I was 9. At the age of 13, I was launched as a member of Star Magic Batch 13. But it wasn’t until my manager Ferdie Lapus who eyed me and believed in my talent that I started doing serious acting. It was a long hard climb to be recognized as an actress,” she revealed to InterAksyon in a recent interview. Of course, it doesn’t hurt to have a very supportive mother who happens to be an award-winning actress herself. Known to be a free spirit herself during her heydays when she topbilled one film after another during the 1980s, Mara said it was her mom who encouraged her to follow her own path and be the best that she can be. “Mom continuously encouraged me to pursue acting, my passion. She gives me a lot of great advice, but what always stands out is how she encourages me to be different. To always dare to stand out and fight for what I believe in,” she pointed out. Fighting for what she believes is what is making Mara stand out in the projects she accepts as of late. In Mes De Guzman’s CineFilipino entry, “Ang Kwento Ni Mabuti”, she plays Lucia, the daughter of Nora Aunor. In Alvin Yapan’s “Debosyon”, a New Breed entry for Cinemalaya, she essays Saling, a mysterious girl who lives in the mountains. But it was her role as the wife of a hardluck shop worker who is forced to give spy-cam videos of her to his unscrupulous employer in “Palitan” that still has people talking about her, not just because of her award-winning portrayal but also because of her frontal nude scenes—something that
Mara Lopez in a scene from Alvin Yapan’s Cinemalaya entry ‘Debosyon’.
Mara says she does not have any problem with. “I am very comfortable with my body. Nudity is a big deal to me but when it comes to my art, it is never an issue because it is done with certain boundaries. In Hollywood, most admired actresses have no problem with nudity such as Angelina Jolie, Kate Winslet and Gwyneth Paltrow, to name a few. Why should it be an issue with me?” she wondered. Thankfully, it wasn’t an issue with the Movie and Television Review Classification Board. With “Debosyon”, a lot of people are already buzzing about a scene that shows her again taking a bath in the waterfalls. Mara said it wasn’t that particular scene that attracted her to her character in the film. “After I auditioned for the role, I prayed very hard that I would get the part. The material is a rare literary gem,” she admitted. While the film tackles religious devotees, Mara said she is not particularly into religion herself. “I’m not devoted to a religion. I’m devoted to Jesus Christ,” she quipped. Outside of acting, the closest thing
Mara has for a religion is extreme sports ,particularly surfing. “I’ve been surfing since I was 6 years old and I’m also a certified advanced open water scuba diver of the Professional Association of Diving Instructors. I love extreme sports! Anything that gives you a rush,” she enthused. As for her other talents, Mara said she can play the guitar and have also done a lot of hosting for sports and travel shows. Because of her love for sports, she also keeps herself in shape by getting into yoga, doing a little gymnastics and “basically establishing a very clean and healthy lifestyle, just living clean and living green”. After “Debosyon”, she is slated to do another project with Direk Alvin Yapan, the GMA News drama series “Titser” with Lovi Poe and Agot Isidro. She also just finished doing a short film directed by no less than Brillante Mendoza. It looks like Mara’s “long hard climb” is beginning to pay off as she has not only carved a niche for herself in the indie circuit, becoming a household name could just be another breakout project away. ■ Edwin P. Sallan / InterAksyon.com / June 24, 2013 / 10:43 pm
ATE Gay will no longer return to “Wowowillie” after leaving Willie Revillame’s noontime show last week. Apparently, he felt slighted when new co-hosts Cacai Bautista and Joy Viado took his usual place as the finale act of the show’s mini-concierto segment. “Kasi lagi ako’ng huli, di ba?… E ano naman kung mauna ko o mahuli? Hindi naman ako magagalit. Hindi kasi ako sinabihan ng staff. Ayoko lang… dapat sinabihan ako para handa ako,” the Nora Aunor impersonator, whose real name is Gil Morales, explained. Did the entry of the two ladies in the show make him insecure? “Hindi naman ako naiinsecure kung sino ang nauuna o nahuhuli. Ako ang nag-suggest na kunin si Cacai pero isinama na ni Willie si Joy,” Ate Gay said. He clarified that he had no hard feelings against Willie but he believed that some members of Willie’s staff did not particularly like him. “Walang kinalaman dito si Willie Revilliame. Mahal ko si kuya at mahal ko ang ‘Wowowillie’. Ang sa akin lang ‘wag palabasin na lumaki ulo ko,” Ate Gay said. Jay Montelibano, business unit head of Willie’s Wil Productions, said Ate Gay left the show on his own volition. “He the one who left the show. I was telling him nga and the manager, Freddie, na regardless na you’re the last, if you’re good you’ll shine… Sabi nga sa ‘kin ni Freddie minsan nga talagang ganun siya. He can be emotional at madamdamin,” Jay said. When Ate Gay did not show up for work the day after the incident, Jay thought the co-host had made up his mind.
“That would show signs of unprofessionalism. So for me sabi niya nung hindi na siya papasok, well that would be his decision,” he said. Joy and Cacai, on the other hand, supported the statement of the show’s management. “Di ko alam. Wala akong alam diyan e. Pero sinabi naman ng maaga na ganito ang sequencing!” Joy said. Both Joy and Cacai said they hope Ate Gay bears no ill will towards them. “We grew up in theater e so para sa amin ang orientation sa amin we don’t see each other as competition. We help each other,” Cacai said. “Ewan ko nga sa kanya e ewan ko sa kanya. Pero sa amin ni Cacai masaya lang kami kumakanta. Sa akin it doesn’t matter kung ako ang number one number two o last,” Joy added. Aside from Ate Gay, co-host Arci Munoz has likewise left the show to concentrate on the new TV5 series “Undercover”, in which she will star opposite Derek Ramsay. ■ MJ Marfori / News5 / June 24, 2013 / 11:06 PM
Comedian Sammy Lagmay, gone
GONE on Wednesday the 55-yearold comedian Sammy Lagmay due to complications of his illness. In an interview with GMA News, said Khay Victorio, brother Sammy, died comedian who shone in the television sitcom during the decade of the 80’s, place 3:20 pm due to complications of this disease result of diabetes. added Victorio, a few times even after stopping dialysis miss Sammy. During the morning of Wednesday, reportedly had difficulty breathing Sammy and also helped him oxygen until purchased was indeed deprived of life. lay his lips St. Peter Memorial Chapel in Tandang Sora, Quezon City. Recurrent hospital Sammy since 2010 due to his illness diabetes and kidney. Blur his vision as they stopped the career is. During an interview with her in 2012 showbiz talk show Startalk TX GMA-7, Lagmay said he wanted to be like her idol Dolphy to leave a smile on the lips when people mentioned her name. In that episode of QTV said the doctor admitted Sammy in end stage kidney disease its. Twice a
week he knows subjected to dialysis. To talk of QTV Sammy said that he accepted his condition. “Acceptable but I also sometimes’ the difficulty nagwi, just wish you would just die,” faithfulness comedian. actors has also confessed Once those who are working on his memorial plan for no problemahin his left when he died. wants Sammy claimed that when he died, smiled when people remembered his name as Dolphy’s. “Like Dolphy in you, you just mention you mapapangiti Dolphy. Hopefully as well as me ... So thanks If so that to happen, “he said. ■ MMacapendeg / FRJimenez / GMA News /
June 26, 2013 / 5:31 PM
Filipino Community of Oxfordshire invites everyone to the
115th Philippine Independence Day Celebration “Filipino integration to the British Society” Saturday - 15 June 2013
The Quadrangle Conference and Exhibition Centre The Kassam Stadium, Grenoble Road, Oxford, OX4 4XP
08:30 - Muse and Flower Parade • 11:00 - Con-celebrated Mass • 12:30 - Lunch (Salo-Salo) • 14:00 - Cultural Show • 18:00 – End of Event The Filipino Community of Oxfordshire (FilCom Oxford) was founded in 2002. Its Mission and Vision is to bring Filipinos in Oxfordshire together, united as one big family in promoting our cultural heritage and advocating fair and equal treatment in the community through proper education, training and good citizenship.
FREE FOR ALL - NO ENTRANCE FEE – FREE PARKING
For sponsorship, stalls and performances please email: Ariel Lanada chairman@ﬁlcomoxford.org.uk
www.ﬁlcomoxford.org.uk Major Sponsor:
PHILIPPINE EMBASSY AROUND THE WORLD
Filcom in Rome celebrates 115th Anniversary of the Proclamation of Philippine Independence THE Philippine Embassy in Rome joined the Filipino community in the celebration of the 115th Anniversary of the Proclamation of Philippine Independence through a Commemorative Mass and Independence Day Fiesta held on 02 June and 09 June 2013, respectively. H.E. Ambassador Virgilio A. Reyes, Jr. and Philippine Embassy officials led the opening of the whole-day celebration at Piazza Ankara on 09 June through a wreath laying and flag raising ceremony. In line with this year’s theme, “Independence Day 2013: Pitching in Towards Inclusive Growth” or “Kalayaan 2013: Ambagan tungo sa Malawakang Kaunlaran,” the Ambassador emphasized in his message that each Filipino has a role to play in sustaining the impressive economic growth that the Philippines is now experiencing. “It is an encouragement for us all to continue, in our individual and collective capacities, to contribute towards a more progressive and prosperous Philippines, where all Filipinos, including and especially those who have less in life, actually experience an improvement in their personal circumstances. This is the essence of
inclusive growth: an economic growth where each Filipino contributes and tangibly feels its benefits.” The annual fiesta celebration, organized by the Philippine Independence Day Association, was held at Piazza Ankara and featured local talents from the Filipino community in Rome. The Filipino Channel also brought in artist Jericho Rosales to provide entertainment to excited community members from different parts of Italy. Round trip airline
tickets Rome-Manila-Rome were raffled and awarded to seven (7) lucky winners during the celebration. The wholeday event, which remained open to the general public for free, attracted more than 5,000 Filipinos from all over Italy. This year’s Misa Para Sa Bayan was held during the first Sunday of the month at the Basilica di Santa Pudenziana where the Sentro Pilipino Chaplaincy is based. ■ Rome PE / June 21, 2013 / Updated
DFA-OCA Assistant Secretary Jaime Victor B. Ledda (seated, left) and Director-General Huang Ping (seated, right) of the Consular Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China sign the Instruments of Ratification of the Philippines-China Consular Agreement. Looking on are DFA Undersecretary for Policy H.E. Evan P. Garcia (6th from left) and Chinese Vice Foreign Minister H.E. Liu Zhenmin. Also witnessing the ceremony was Philippine Ambassador to China H.E. Erlinda F. Basilio (5th from left), Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines H.E. Ma Keqing (4th from right) and DFA-ASPAC Assistant Secretary Maria Theresa P. Lazaro (3rd from left).
Philippines, China Hold 5th PH-China Consular Consultation Meeting in Beijing; Exchange Instruments of Ratification for the PhilippinesChina Consular Agreement
Secretary of Agriculture and Philippine Ambassador lead treeplanting THE Secretary of Agriculture, Honorable Proceso J. Alcala, while on a visit to Rome for the Agribusiness Investment Forum and the 38th Session of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Conference, joined His Excellency Ambassador Virgilio A. Reyes, Jr. in a ceremonial planting of a laurel tree in the
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
Philippine Embassy Grounds. Dubbed as “L’albero di Indipendenza” (Tree of Independence), the planting of the laurel tree is part of the Embassy’s celebration of the 115th Anniversary of Philippine Independence by highlighting the tree’s importance in Philippine culture. As one may recall, the leaves of the laurel
tree are commonly used by Filipinos for cooking adobo and other Filipino dishes and as a medicine for open wounds, arthritis and other illnesses. (Photos by Richard L. Pineda) Thursday, 27 June 2013 12:38 | Last Updated on Thursday, 27 June 2013 12:47 | Written by Rome PE. ■ Rome PE / June 21, 2013 / Updated 11:33 AM
Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary for Consular Affairs Jaime Victor B. Ledda met with Director-General Huang Ping of the Consular Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China for the 5th Philippines-China Consular Consultations held in Beijing on 13 June 2013. Joining Assistant Secretary Ledda in the Philippine delegation were Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary for Asia and Pacific Affairs Maria Theresa P. Lazaro and Deputy Chief of Mission Antonio Morales of the Philippine Embassy in Beijing. The Consular Consultation Meeting discussed matters pertaining to consular relations between the Philippines and the People’s Republic of China such as the protection of the lawful rights and interests of citizens in the territory of the other State, including the general conditions of Chinese and Filipino nationals in their host countries and matters on consular notification. The participants to the Meeting also discussed visa policy issues, issues pertaining to the operations of Consular Missions and exchanged views on best practices in consular matters that would further enhance Philippines-China bilateral relations. Both the Philippines and China recognized the need to continue having regular dialogues on consular matters to resolve consular issues and enhance bilateral people-to-people exchanges. The Philippines will host the next Philippines-China Consular Consultation Meeting sometime next year. The following day, June 14, the Philippines and China exchanged the Instruments of Ratification of the
Philippines-China Consular Agreement (PCCA) with Assistant Secretary Jaime Victor B. Ledda and Director-General Huang Ping as the signatories. The Philippines-China Consular Agreement (PCCA) is the first consular agreement that the Philippines has negotiated with another country since acceding to the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations in 1963. As a framework for bilateral consular consultations, the PCCA will establish the conduct of consular relations between the Philippines and China and aims to facilitate the consular relationship between the two countries by addressing longstanding concerns of the Philippine Embassy and Consulates General in China, in particular the provision of Assistance-to-Nationals (ATN) services which includes notification of arrests and detention of Filipino nationals, visitation rights of detained nationals, and repatriation issues. The PCCA not only lists down the rules governing the establishment of consular posts and the appointment and admission of consular officers for both countries, but also lists down the specific consular functions that may be exercised by consular posts. The Agreement was signed in Manila by then Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto G. Romulo and his Chinese counterpart then Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi on October 29, 2009. On February 26, 2010, the Chinese National People’s Congress ratified the Agreement while the Instrument of Ratification was signed by H.E. President Benigno S. Aquino III on March 31, 2011. The Philippine Senate ratified the Agreement on May 08, 2012. ■ June 25, 2013 / 04:57 PM
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Japan vows to help Philippines defend its remote islands amid China sea row
MANILA - Japan pledged Thursday to help the Philippines defend its “remote islands”, as both governments expressed concern over China’s robust moves to stake its claims to disputed Asian waters. Japanese Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera said China’s contentious claim to nearly all of the South China Sea and its territorial dispute with Japan in the East China Sea were discussed during top-level talks in Manila. “We agreed that we will further cooperate in terms of the defence of remote islands... the defence of territorial seas as well as protection of maritime interests,” Onodera told a joint news conference. “We face a very similar situation in the East China Sea of Japan. The Japan side is very concerned that this kind of situation in the South China Sea could affect the situation in the East China Sea,” he said, speaking through an interpreter. Philippine Defence Secretary Voltaire Gazmin welcomed Japan’s offer of support for its poorly resourced military. “We have agreed to continue our exchanges of information, exchanges of technology to help each other to make our defence relations stronger,” Gazmin said. Neither side offered specifics but Philippine Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario said in February his country was expecting to get 10 new Japanese patrol boats within 18 months. The Japanese military brutally occupied the Philippines during World
War II, but the two countries have since grown closer due to trade and investment, and more recently, through China’s assertiveness. Del Rosario told the Financial Times newspaper in December that a rearmed Japan would help the region counterbalance China. Onodera and Gazmin also on Thursday welcomed an increased military presence in Asia by their mutual ally, the United States. However Onodera said Japan was intent on avoiding conflict with China. “I would also like to emphasise here that the current situation should not be changed with the use of force but should be done through the rule of law,” Onodera said. China claims most of the South
China Seam including waters close to its neighbours’ coasts. The Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia, Vietnam and Taiwan also have competing claims. The Philippines has complained of increased Chinese “bullying” in the contested waters in recent years, and infuriated China by appealing to allies Japan and the United States for help. The Philippines says China last year occupied an atoll well within the Filipino exclusive economic zone. Tensions between China and Japan have also escalated over competing claims to the Japanese-held Senkaku islands, which Beijing calls the Diaoyus, in the East China Sea. ■ Agence France-Presse / June 27, 2013 / 4:00 PM
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
43 OFWs from Saudi confirm hardships in Riyadh tent city, urge speedy repatriation MANILA, Philippines - Forty-three Filipinos who returned to the country from Saudi Arabia Thursday urged government to immediately repatriate at least 7,000 other workers crowding a “tent city” in Riyadh before the Saudi government resumes its crackdown on undocumented foreigners. The returning workers, all men, arrived on Emirates flight EK336 at 7:05 a.m. and were led by Charles Bregondo, a native of Cebu and an official of the “Guardians” in the Middle East. Bregondo said he and his group volunteered as cooks and caretakers for their fellow OFWs, particularly the elderly, during the close to three months they stayed at the tent city. The Cebu native, who also helped handle grievance and complaints, said most of the complaints of abuses by a number of Philippine labor and embassy officers were true. He claimed that the “sex-for-flight” scandal that had recently been reported victimized not only female OFWs but men as well. Although he did not disclose any details of the alleged abuses, Bregondo said he was willing to testify in the ongoing investigations. Bregondo said the OFWs had to organize themselves to keep riots from breaking out because of the unsanitary and harsh conditions at the tent city, which he blamed on what he called the almost total absence of help from the Philippine government. “Wala kaming supply ng tubig na
magamit at makain. Kailangang kalmahin ang mga kababayang gusto nang makabalik sa Pilipinas kahit sa anong paraan kasi kapag nagka-riot lahat kami duon ay madadamay at makukulong (We had no supply of water or food. We had to calm our compatriots who were impatient to return to the Philippines by whatever means possible because had a riot broken out, all of us there would be jailed),” Bregondo said. He urged the government to immediately bring back the remaining Filipinos before the Saudis start cracking down again on July 3. Bregondo particularly appealed for the immediate repatriation of 63-year old Potenciana Perez of Bulacan, who he said suffers from a heart ailment. ■ Eric B. Apolonio / InterAksyon.com / June 27, 2013 / 3:31 PM
Charles Bregondo, who led 43 OFWs who returned from Saudi Arabia, goes through Customs at the NAIA.The returning workers urged the government to immediately repatriate thousands of other OFWs crowding a tent city in Riyadh before Saudi authorities resume cracking down on undocumented foreigners. Photo by Eric B. Apolonio ©InterAksyon.com
Mayor, local officials may need to work longer hours for successful relocation of urban poor MAYORS and local officials may need to be more patient and may spend more hours working their jobs to implement a plan that will relocate urban poor communities away from danger zones and waterways in Metro Manila. This point was raised by an official of the National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC), saying that the undertaking--called Peoples’ Plans because they were formulated by community members themselves--”hinges on the response time and collective efforts of the government bureaucracy.” “Let’s get these People’s Plans to work and we will definitely see a relief from flooding and a reduction in casualties and property damage after every storm,” NAPC
Assistant Secretary Gina dela Cruz said in a statement. “This will require a lot of patience and hard work from our mayors but these will be their constituencies that they will be serving. And once the People’s Plans are put into action, relief will be forthcoming,” she said. These People’s Plans will be the key to finally clearing the metropolis’ rivers and esteros and at the same time, ensuring the safety, welfare and dignity of our urban poor, the statement added. A People’s Plan is a resettlement and relocation plan of an urban poor community. It is the result of intensive research, evidence-gathering, feasibility
studies, among others, with the community not only participating but taking the lead and government agencies providing technical support. This collaboration has led to designs of affordable medium-rise housing programs that are still linked to their sources of livelihood. Basic social services are also thus assured. “Since 2011, NAPC has facilitated at least 20 People’s Plans covering at least 30,000 families living in danger areas in the City,” she said. These plans have been submitted to various agencies and are now undergoing the necessary processes for final approval. ■ InterAksyon.com / June 27, 2013 / 2:55 PM
Elite SEALS to join divers in search for downed Air Force plane MANILA, Philippines - A team of technical divers from the Navy’s elite SEALS unit was en route from Sangley Point in Cavite City to Palawan to join the search for the fuselage of an OV-10 Bronco aircraft that crashed off Puerto Princesa City Sunday night as it came in to land. The six-man team left Villamor Airbase in Pasay City on a C-130 transport plane early Thursday morning, Navy spokesman Lieutenant Commander Gregory Gerald Fabic said.
He said the team would dive in waters where sonar located what is believed to be “a wreck on the seabed,” Fabic said. The Air Force earlier contracted the Cebu-based M/Y Sakura, which is equipped with portable sonar equipment, to aid in the search for the downed aircraft, one of two planes that conducted a night proficiency flight Sunday. On Wednesday, Commodore Joseph Rustom Pena, chief of Naval Forces West, said it was possible the downed plane’s pilots—Major Jonathan A. Ybanez and
1rst Lieutenant Abner Trust Nacion— failed to bail out and remained trapped in the fuselage. Commander Carlo Lagasca, skipper of the Navy’s BRP Mangyan (AS71), which has led the search operations for the missing airmen, said they hope what the sonar detected was the plane’s body. The 507th Strike Wing has formed a Board of Inquiry to investigate the crash while the Air Force has grounded its eight remaining OV10s for inspection. ■ Jaime Sinapit / InterAksyon.com / June 27, 2013 / 9:46 AM
Coast Guard divers retrieve debris from the OV-10 Bronco that crashed off Palawan. The Navy has sent in a team of SEALS divers to help search for the down plane’s fuselage and the two missing pilots.
Filipino women shock hometown bets in China... It was a majority decision with two judges seeing it the Davaoena’s way, 40-36 and 39-37 while the Indonesian judge gave it to Liu, 39-37. London Olympian Mark Anthony Barriga again relied on his guile and speed to thwart India’s game Naveen Kumar, a silver medalist in the 2011 world junior championships, to give the first win in the Filipino men’s side. The diminutive 20-year-old played his in-and-out game to the hilt to frustrate the Indian to win it, 2-1, on scores of 30-26, 28-29 and 30-27. But 20-year-old Nico Magliquian of Talisay, Negros Occidental fell. Only in his second international tournament, Magliquian seemed ready to take the fight away from Ajay Kumar of
India but faded in the third round to lose a close 1-2 decision. Junel Cantancio, following in the footsteps of his uncle and now national coach Leopoldo, got busy all three rounds against Mauritian Colin John with all three judges scoring it identically, 28-25 for the Philippine Air Force airman. Gabuco and Petecio will be in the finals Friday against Xu Shiqi of China and New Zealand’s Alexis Pritchard, respectively. In the men’s semifinals Thursday, Barriga fights Chinese Xu Chao while Cantancio faces another formidable Chinese boxer, Wang Bo. ABAP executive director Ed Picson said, “This is a shortened tournament with only eight countries, but if you look at the line-ups you will realize the high
Continuation from page 40
caliber of boxers entered here. We have ex-Olympians, world champions and upand-coming talents. We’re happy to be here but even happier that some of our boxers are in the medal fights”. Ricky Vargas, ABAP president was in constant touch by phone and expressed joy at the performance of their wards. “Let’s take this all the way to the world championships, the SEA Games and beyond”, he said. Coaches are Pat Gaspi and Roel Velasco for the men and Elias Recaido Jr for the women. Women’s team manager is Karina Picson. Filipina AIBA international referee-judge Ludy Therese Ceriales is also officiating here. ■ InterAKTV / June 20,
2013 / 9:44 PM / Photo by Josie Gabuco courtesy of ©ABAP
San Sebastian looks to bounce back against tough Arellano; Perpetual, EAC clash SAN Sebastian hopes to bounce back from its opening day loss as it takes on Arellano in NCAA Season 89 action on Thursday at The Arena in San Juan. The Stags face the Chiefs at 4 p.m. before the game between Perpetual and Emilio Aguinaldo College at 6 p.m. Despite a late rally, San Sebastian fell short against Letran last Saturday, 74-69, to open the season with a loss. But the setback might have helped the Stags find a new leader after the departure of superstar Calvin Abueva, as well as reigning Most Valuable Player Ian Sangalang and Ronald Pascual. Big man Bradwyn Guinto scored 17 points, while John Ortouste contributed 16 points to lead their team in the losing effort. Arellano, meanwhile, wants to notch
Photo by MRoy Afable ©InterAKTV
July 2013 – No. 13 • UK & Europe Edition
Photo by Mark Dimalanta ©Sports 5
Second division champion Team Socceroo... Team Socceroo also registered a goal differential of plus-46 after scoring 60 goals and giving up only 14 — numbers that dwarfed those of its opponents. Lee Jeong Woo led all scorers of Team Socceroo this season with his 14 goals and is expected to win the Golden Boot honors in Division Two. The awarding a victory to open its campaign on a high note against San Sebastian. The Chiefs, who made heads turn after dominating NCAA teams in the preseason, hopes to get solid production from key players James Forrester and John Pinto, among others, to beat the Stags. In the second game, Perpetual and EAC tangle in their first match of the season at 6 p.m. With the loss of scorer Jett Vidal in the lineup, Perpetual hopes to lean once again on the magic of veteran coach Aric del Rosario, who brought the Altas last year in their first final four trip after eight years.
Continuation from page 40 ceremonies will be held on June 30. In the League’s final match of the season, Global FC blanked Philippine Army, 3-0, to finish the season at second place in the first division. Stallion Sta. Lucia already won the Division One crown after topping the table with 46 points. ■ Karl Decena / InterAKTV / June 21, 2013 / 9:20 PM
Meanwhile, the Generals lean once again on Cameroonian big man Cedric Happi Noube, who had an impressive rookie season after winning the Rookie of the Year award and making it to the Mythical Five last year. AksyonTV, TV5’s TV5’s news and sports-related channel, begins live coverage at 4 p.m. Games air over Channel 41 in Metro Manila and Channel 29 in Cebu and Davao on free television, Channel 59 on SKY Cable, and Channel 1 on Cignal Digital TV. Replay of the games will be broadcast over HYPER Channel 53 on Cignal Digital TV. ■ Karl Decena / InterAKTV / June 26, 2013 / 11:23 PM
Gilas lines up games vs PBA stars... Cantancio joins fellow Pinoy bets in China Open boxing finals; Barriga eliminated Continuation from page 40
before facing fellow FIBA Asia participant Kazakhstan at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum on July 26th, a mere five days before FIBA Asia Championships tip off. Both games are likely to feature the final Gilas lineups for the FIBA Asia tournament as they are scheduled after the July 12 deadline of submission. Also on tap for Gilas team is a training tour in New Zealand, where they are slated to face several pro teams as well as the New Zealand national team.
Photo by Paul Mata ©Sports 5
The New Zealand team, nicknamed the “Tall Blacks” after their famed “All Blacks” squad in rugby, finished 4th in the 2002 FIBA World Championships, but has finished no better than 10th in either the Olympics or World Championships since. The FIBA Asia Championships are scheduled for August 1-11 with games to be played at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City and at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium in Vito Cruz, Manila. ■ InterAKTV / June 26, 2013 / 11:11 PM
GUIYANG, China – The PLDT-ABAP national boxing team in the China Open Boxing now has three boxers in the finals of the highly-rated tournament as 27 yearold Junel Cantancio upended the host’s lightweight bet, Wang Bo in Thursday’s semifinal round. Cantancio, nicknamed by his teammates as “Unli” for his seemingly unlimited energy, kept up the pressure against his opponent the entire fight, not allowing the Chinese fighter to set up any kind of offense. The three judges gave Cantancio every round with identical scores of 30-27. AIBA recently adopted the 10-point must scoring system. A big letdown was the loss of London Olympian Mark Anthony Barriga who bowed to Guiyang native Wu Zhonglin by unanimous decision on scores of 28-29, 2730, and 28-29. The pint-sized Barriga took too much time trying to figure out his opponent and lost precious ground in the process. He shifted to his usual slick style in the third round but by then, Wu had already taken a commanding lead. The Panabo, Davao del Norte native takes home the bronze medal in the light-flyweight category. He had to be taken by ambulance
to the hospital later after dislocating his left thumb on delivering an uppercut in the third round. ABAP executve director Ed Picson observed that Barriga and other Filipino boxers need to be more conscious of the nuances of the scoring system. “They need to know how to adjust their game to the system. We had a lengthy meeting after the fights this afternoon with the coaches and boxers to explain to them in more detail what they need to do to take
advantage of the new rule”, said Picson. A day earlier, the two women members of the Philippine team both barged into the finals. Josie Gabuco takes on Xu Shiqi, the same boxer she beat in the finals of the world championships in Qingdao, China last year. “I know she is out to avenge that loss, so I’m prepared for her” said Gabuco, who created waves here when she beat London silver medalist and three-time world champion Ren Cancan in the semis Wednesday. Dusky Nesthy Petecio will have lanky Alexis Pritchard of New Zealand contesting the lightweight (60 kg.) gold medal with her. The Kiwi lass towers about six inches over her but Petecio said, “I’m used to fighting girls that tall.” ABAP president Ricky Vargas conveyed his pleasure at having three boxers in the finals of a tough tournament, but added, “Let’s work at getting more next time.” In 13 finals bouts on Friday, Chinese boxers are in nine of them. In two weight categories — the men’s flyweight and bantamweight, the gold will be contested by boxers from the host country. A total of eight nations and 90 boxers are represented here. ■ InterAKTV / June 21, 2013 · 11:09 PM /Photo ©ABAP
sport Second division champion Team Socceroo completes sweep of UFL season
DIVISION Two champion Team Socceroo capped its perfect season with by demolishing Laos FC, 8-1, in the United Football League Thursday at the Emperador Stadium in McKinley Hill in Taguig. Eight different players scored one goal apiece for Team Socceroo, which won all 16 games this season en route to promotion to the first division. Continued on page 38
Gilas lines up games vs PBA stars, Kazakhstan national team as final tuneups before FIBA Asia
In trying to stay sharp before the FIBA Asia Championship in August, the Philippine national men’s basketball team has set up a pair of tuneup games days prior to the tournament’s opening. The SMART-Gilas Pilipinas national team will take on a selection of PBA star at the SM Mall of Asia Arena on July 23 Continued on page 38
Filipino women shock hometown bets in China Open amateur boxing GUIYANG, China – The distaff side of the PLDT-ABAP national boxing team is showing the way in the tough China Open Boxing in this southwestern Chinese capital. Reigning 48-kg. world champion
Josie Gabuco of Palawan shocked the hometown crowd here late Wednesday with a masterful showing against London Olympics silver medalist and 3-time world flyweight (51-kg.) champion Ren Cancan. The lanky Chinese policewoman
seemed befuddled at the speed and agility of her shorter Filipina opponent, time and again absorbing wicked combinations as Gabuco engaged her in close quarters. All three judges scored it for the 26-year old single mother of a six-year-old boy.
Nesthy Petecio likewise slew a Chinese dragon in Liu Chang, the reigning lightweight national champion of China, peppering her taller opponent with power hooks and uppercuts. Continued on page 38