Posted by akosistella on April 24, 2010
Manila Times: Misaligned priorities
THE National Statistics Office (NSO) reported a very disturbing piece of information this week.
According to the government’s main statistics agency, one in three poor Filipinos owns a cellular phone even as the majority of them have no access to sanitary toilets or electricity.
Among household appliances, only the TV outranked the mobile phone in ubiquity, with 43 percent of poor families owning the tube.
With six out of every 10 families having at least one member owning a cell phone, this makes the gadget the second most popular household convenience.
What makes this piece of information jarring is that at least one out of every three poor families has no electricity.
via Manila Times
Daily Tribune: Private citizen Villar?
Reacting to reports that Nacionalista Party (NP) standard bearer Sen. Manuel “Manny” Villar, when he was Senate president, met with Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) in relation to getting his 180 day lock-up shares being freed and sold on a secondary level within the same period his companies’ IPO (Initial Public Offering) hit the stock market, which was then on a boom cycle, a Villar company official admitted that indeed Villar did meet with these officials, but claimed he met with them, not as Senate president, but as a private individual.
This is the hoariest explanation given yet from Villar’s camp, after Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP) presidential candidate former President Joseph Estrada and Senate President Juan Ponce-Enrile exposed the Villar scam that not only probably impoverished the overseas Filipino workers who had bought the shares, in anticipation of making money (OFWs were targeted by Villar and his companies as share buyers with a roadshow yet), but also a lot of other stock market players who may have lost a lot of money, not even aware of the fact that, as they were buying up the shares, Villar was dumping his shares, and making billions out of it.
Via Daily Tribune
Phil. Star: Reduced to tears
Alberto Agra, in the brief period during which he will serve as justice secretary in an acting capacity, has managed to gain the kind of notoriety that is hard to ever live down. He will always be remembered as the justice chief who dismissed criminal charges that are already in court.His move might have escaped public attention in this busy election period if the case did not involve one of the most heinous crimes in the country’s history, and the most atrocious case of election violence.
Relatives and friends of the 57 people massacred in Maguindanao on Nov. 23 last year have wondered whether justice is possible under the watch of President Arroyo, a staunch ally of former Maguindanao governor Andal Ampatuan Sr., patriarch of the clan that now stands accused of conspiracy in perpetrating the mass murder. Agra’s resolution dismissing the multiple murder charges against Ampatuan’s son Zaldy and another member of the clan – charges that are already in court – can only reinforce the fears of the victims’ heirs
via Philippine Star.
Inquirer: In good hands?
Deputy presidential spokesperson Gary Olivar said it was “certainly reasonable to ask about (Carpon’s) credentials.” But he told critics not to look down on Carpon saying, “It is not correct to question someone just because he or she has a poor station in life.” He said that was, in fact, one of the reasons she was picked for the job. The President deemed it appropriate to have somebody like Carpon on the board “to make sure that poor government employees were represented by one of their own.”
That explanation would have been believable if the President were more consistent. If she truly believes disadvantaged sectors are best represented by someone from their own ranks, why has she not dissuaded her son, Rep. Mikey Arroyo, from seeking to represent security guards and tricycle drivers in the House of Representatives? And if “poor government employees” need their own representative in the institutions that were established to promote their welfare, why stop with Pag-Ibig? What about the Government Service Insurance System? Or even PhilHealth?