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Posts Tagged ‘Supreme Court’

Corona names Carpio-Morales as head of House electoral tribunal

Posted by akosistella on June 4, 2010


MANILA, Philippines – Associate Justice Conchita Carpio-Morales takes over as chair of the Supreme Court’s third division and the High Court’s contingent to the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET) after a reorganization by Chief Justice Renato Corona.

In one of his first administrative orders, Corona assumed his new post as chair of the first division of the SC with Associate Justice Presbitero Velasco Jr. as working chair and Associate Justices Teresita Leonardo-de Castro, Mariano del Castillo and Jose Perez as members.

SC spokesman and court administrator Jose Midas Marquez told reporters that the chief justice traditionally sits as chair of the first division.

via Philippine Star.


Posted in 2010 elections, Comelec, News, Noynoy Aquino, Philippine politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

House panel formed to canvass votes for president, VP

Posted by akosistella on May 22, 2010


MANILA, Philippines – UPDATE The House of Representatives completed the members of its panel that would work with the Senate in canvassing the votes for president and vice president starting next week, Speaker Prospero Nograles announced Friday.

The nine-member group will be composed of Nograles as chairman, majority leader Arthur Defensor, minority leader Ronaldo Zamora, senior deputy majority leader Neptali Gonzales II, senior deputy minority leader Roilo Golez, Representatives Crispin Remulla Cavite, Didagen Dilangalen Shariff Kabunsuan with Cotabato City, and Matias Defensor Quezon City, and Michael John Duavit Rizal.

Alternate members include Representatives Teodoro Locsin Jr. Makati, Rufus Rodriguez Cagayan de Oro, Lorenzo Tanada III Quezon, Liwayway Vinzons-Chato Camarines Norte, Simeon Datumanong Maguindanao, Giorgidi Aggabao Isabela, Pedro Romualdo Camiguin, Joseph Emilio Abaya Cavite, and Eduardo Zialcita Paranaque.

via INQUIRER.net.

ALSO READ: Santiago inhibits self from Congressional canvas


Noynoy cries foul over plan to delay proclamation

President-apparent Senator Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III on Friday cried foul over House Speaker Prospero Nograles’s reported plan to move back the proclamation of president and vice president from June 4 to June 30, the same day President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo steps down from office.

Nograles, who lost the mayoralty race in Davao City, was quoted as saying that the Senate and the House of Representatives, convening as the national board of canvassers, would proclaim the winning president and vice president “on or before high noon of June 30.”

“Offhand yung aabutin ng June 30, meron pang on or before, noon na sinasabi. Parang napaka hindi tama na sabihin ng Speaker yan,” Aquino said in an interview with reporters after he was visited in his Times Street home by US Ambassador Harry K. Thomas Jr.

Via GMANews.TV

ALSO: Tatad to ask High Court to nullify poll results

Posted in Philippine politics, 2010 elections, Noynoy Aquino, News, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Barangay ‘kap’ out for Aquino oath but Corona not in

Posted by akosistella on May 20, 2010


MANILA, Philippines—Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III will no longer take his oath before a barangay (village) captain when he is proclaimed the winner in the presidential election, his spokesperson said Wednesday.

Lawyer Edwin Lacierda said the Aquino camp was now considering a notary public, a judge or a justice of the Court of Appeals to swear in the Liberal Party standard-bearer.

Or, it will probably be an associate justice of the Supreme Court, according to a source who asked not to be named for lack of authority to speak publicly on the matter. But Lacierda said there was still no decision on that.

via INQUIRER.net.

Posted in 2010 elections, Comelec, News, Noynoy Aquino, Philippine politics | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Bernas to Aquino: Recognize Corona appointment

Posted by akosistella on May 20, 2010


MANILA, Philippines – Leading presidential contender Senator Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III should recognize the appointment of Chief Justice Renato Corona, an expert on the Constitution said Wednesday.

Constitutionalist Father Jose Bernas SJ said that Aquino should accept the appointment of Corona to the chief justice post to avoid a constitutional crisis.

Bernas said, despite Aquino not wanting to take his oath of office from Corona, he believes the incoming president will respect the appointment made by outgoing President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

Bernas, one of the authors of the 1987 Constitution, explained that even if he is opposed to the Supreme Court’s decision on the controversial appointment ban, the High Court should still be respected.

Aside from the appointment ban, he is also opposed to the decision of the SC on the executive privilege of current Social Security Systems President Romulo Neri in relation to the NBN-ZTE telecommunications scandal, and the division of a congressional district in Camarines Sur favoring presidential son Rep. Diosdado “Dato” Macapagal Arroyo.

He said Corona should now be given a chance to prove himself, saying that he is giving the new chief justice the benefit of the doubt, and that he is his own man. (Report from Timi Nubla, ABS-CBN News)


Aquino may take oath before senior justice

LEGAZPI CITY , Philippines – Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III is likely to take his oath as the country’s next president before one of the senior justices of the Supreme Court (SC) or the Court of Appeals (CA), former senator Victor Ziga said yesterday.

Ziga, who served as a Cabinet member of the late President Corazon Aquino, said the younger Aquino would follow what his mother did.

Ziga said Cory took her oath in 1986, not before then chief justice Ramon Aquino, but before Claudio Teehankee, the most senior magistrate in the SC.

Via Phil. Star

Opposition to Corona still rankles
• Ex-gov’t execs add voice; lawyer hits media blitz

FORMER Cabinet and other senior government officials of the Marcos, Aquino, Ramos, Estrada and Arroyo administrations yesterday added their voices to those opposing the appointment of Renato Corona as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.

The Former Senior Government Officials (FSGO) said Corona’s appointment is “unethical and smacked of lack of decency and utter disregard for the results of the May 10 automated elections.”

“So much has been said to justify the appointment of Justice Renato Corona as lawful, but Malacañang’s apologists have completely missed the point. What is legal is not necessarily ethical,” they said in a statement.

via Malaya

EARLIER: Can barangay captain administer oath to Noynoy?

Posted in 2010 elections, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, News, Noynoy Aquino, Philippine politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Corona sworn in today

Posted by akosistella on May 17, 2010


[Former Chief Justice Reynato] Puno told reporters last Friday that Aquino should respect the rule of law if he becomes the country’s 15th president.

He added that the SC has already come up with its ruling, which declared that the constitutional ban on midnight appointments does not cover vacancies in the SC, thus upholding the authority of Mrs. Arroyo to appoint his successor.

It would be up to the President to exercise such power, he said.

“The rule of law is the glue that unites our society, without the rule of law our society will disintegrate. All of us should observe this rule of law, there’s nobody who can excuse himself and say that he is not covered by the rule of law. The higher you are in the government the more you should respect the rule of law,” Puno said.

via Philippine Star.

ALSO READ: Noynoy urged anew to accept Corona as Chief Justice

Posted in 2010 elections, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, News, Noynoy Aquino, Philippine politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

A sociable Chief Justice

Posted by akosistella on May 15, 2010


The newly appointed Supreme Court chief justice, Renato Corona, is publicly known for his decisions–mostly favoring the Arroyo administration–and  dissents.

In a recent case, Guingona v. Comelec, the Court compelled the Commission on Elections to disclose all the information on the technical preparations for the polls “given the alarming details in the run-up” to our first automated elections. On this issue of transparency, he cast a dissenting vote.

It is not far-fetched to think that a person who is averse to disclosing information that is of public interest–and a Supreme Court justice at that–would like to keep a low profile and, well, keep to himself and his work. But Corona doesn’t. His social calendar seems to be busy.

via Newsbreak Online.

Posted in 2010 elections, Comelec, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, News, Philippine politics | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Arroyo ‘declined’ to run for Speaker – ally

Posted by akosistella on May 15, 2010


MAASIN CITY, Philippines –President Macapagal Arroyo, the congresswoman-elect of Pampanga’s second district, has allegedly “declined” her allies’ prodding to run for Speaker, saying she would rather be like “Sonia Gandhi” of the Philippines, a lawmaker said on Saturday.

Gandhi is the Italian-born widow of assassinated Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. She was immensely popular and assumed the party’s leadership when her husband was assassinated in 1991.

In an emergency meeting held in Malacanang Thursday, Arroyo told her allies that she could effectively help them in Congress “if she is not the Speaker, ” re-elected Southern Leyte Representative Roger Mercado told the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

via INQUIRER.net.


GMA in the footsteps of her father’s rival
GET REAL By Solita Collas Monsod

ANY HOPE THAT HISTORY WILL TREAT Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo kindly has suffered another setback by her act of appointing a new chief justice of the Supreme Court one-and-a-half months before she leaves office. A chief justice who will be holding office for eight years, thus being in situ, so to speak, during the entire period of her successor’s term, thus depriving President-elect Noynoy Aquino the opportunity to make arguably one of the most important appointments of his administration—the head of the third branch of government. If that isn’t an act of malice on her part, it is at least one of the pettiest—unworthy of a president.

Click Winnie Monsod

Posted in 2010 elections, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, MAR Roxas, Noynoy Aquino, Opinion, Philippine politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Quit whining Sen. Aquino…behave like a President right now!

Posted by akosistella on May 15, 2010

YESTERDAY, President-elect Benigno Simeon Aquino III (perhaps we should cease calling him Noynoy out of respect), said he would rather take his oath of office before a barangay captain (or tanod, depending which paper you read), than before the new Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, Renato Corona. Aquino, of course, has been vocal about his views regarding incumbent President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo’s appointment of the new Chief Justice even before the position had become vacant.

This idea of taking one’s oath of office before a barangay tanod/captain, just shows who the President-elect has been listening to lately. Senator Chiz Escudero, perpetual Presidential wanna-be, was the source of this hare-brained idea after he told Karen Davila on Headstart yesterday, that there was nothing legally wrong if Aquino didn’t wish to take his oath before Corona. Escudero, added that in his case, he always took his oath of office before a barangay captain after he won his elective posts. Umm, okay.

Not that a barangay captain is a lowly disdainful post, but after GMA had dragged the image and position of the presidency through the mud with her shenanigans, we need to return the Philippine Presidency back to respectability. The Supreme Court already ruled that GMA had the right to appoint a Chief Justice. So Aquino better quit his whining right now and act like a President; he should do what is necessary to make us all look up to the position again. And that means, respecting the law.

I think the public needs to see the pomp and circumstance surrounding a newly-elected President’s inaugural ceremony which includes taking his oath before a Supreme Court Chief Justice, before the public at the Quirino grandstand, as tradition dictates. We need to feel good about the Presidency again. We need to know that the new President is a public official that prioritizes the law over personal feelings.

Aquino owes it to the millions of Filipinos who cast their votes in his favor, and show the rest of the citizenry that he isn’t wrapped up in trivialities and pettiness. (In the first place, Aquino was the one who forced the hand of GMA to appoint the Chief Justice because of his brilliant statement saying that his administration would go after her. Talk about showing all your cards before the card game is over!)

Anyhoo, while I had been fuming about Aquino’s statement, Dean Marvic Leonen of the UP College of Law, wrote a more comprehensive and dispassionate explanation why the President-elect should take his oath before the SC Chief Justice. Leonen, as many of you know, had opposed Arroyo’s appointment of the Chief Justice. I am publishing his note here with his kind permission:

Respect the Office, Not Necessarily the Incumbent: Why Take the Oath Before the Chief Justice
By MARVIC LEONEN, Dean of the College of Law
University of the Philippines

My criticism of the decision of the Supreme Court in de Castro v JBC et al is well known. I have participated in many fora to explain why I think the decision was wrong. I have also called on the President not to appoint the next Chief Justice. I am also calling for Justice Corona not to accept.

But in case he does, should the President not take his oath of office before the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court?

The Office of the Chief Justice is a creation of the Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines. So is the Office of the President. The Chief Justice presides over the Supreme Court, primus interpares with all the other associate justices. The Supreme Court in turn supervises and controls all other appellate and trial courts. It is that body that determines with finality–rightly or wrongly–what an entire constitutional department does. Ceremonially, the Supreme Court is represented by its Chief Justice.

The Supreme Court has the final say on the interpretation of the Constitution. As a document, the constitution is the formal representation of our ideas relating to government. As a human institution, the Supreme Court has erred–many times–on what the proper interpretation of its provisions should be. They should be rightly criticized for it, and it is the role of the legal academe, the legal profession and the public in general to call its attention to mistakes in its decisions. There are however many conceptions of what may constitute a wrong decision. There are fundamental bases of logic, hermeneutics and semiotics which provide wider consensus than other modes of argumentation. But, to make the system work, a wrong decision sometimes becomes final and must be acknowledged as such especially by the Executive Department.

Whoever is appointed as Chief Justice carries the burdens of the functions of that office as well as its traditions. Lately, starting with Chief Justice Andres Narvasa, to Hilarion Davide, to Artemio Panganiban and finally to Reynato Puno, the Supreme Court collectively addressed issues of correcting institutional injustices. Each of their courts may have had horrible decisions, but all of them attempted to addressed issues relating to access to justice of the poor and the marginalized. There may be some disagreement on how they proceeded to do this, but at least they did accept it as a problem of each of their courts.

Chief Justice Reynato Puno started the initiative of addressing enforced and involuntary disappearances through the promulgation of the writ of amparo and habeas data, bringing courts closer to the people through the justice on wheels program, environmental disasters through the writ of kalikasan and the concept of “continuing mandamus.” There are of course some decisions of this court as it was composed that deserves more academic scrutiny. Its recent decision with a majority of nine (9) allowing the President of the Republic of the Philippines to appoint the next Chief Justice is one among many decisions that amply deserves criticism.

But courts decide using their discretion within given circumstances. At this level of decision making on the meanings of the texts of our constitution and our laws, fifteen individuals are given the constitutional prerogative to decide on its proper interpretation. Theirs is supposed to be the result of rational discourse. Canonically, it should not be on the basis of crass and personal political interests. Institutionally, this idea is preserved by not subjecting their decisions to an electoral vote.

The President-elect takes her/his oath before the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court not because of any provision of the constitution nor any other legal requirement. He does so because of the symbolisms of that ritual. The oath–prescribed by the constitution–is administered by the head of an autonomous, co-equal department of government charged with the preservation of the words found in the Constitution of the Republic. It acknowledges the existence of an entire branch of government and affirms the executive’s respect for the accomplishments and the constitutional role of the supreme court, the appellate and trial courts.

These symbolisms are lost when the oath is taken before a Punong Barangay. These symbolisms, in fact, will be denied.

President Corazon Aquino took her oath, not before the Chief Justice, but before Associate Justice Claudio Teehankee. Immediately after that, she issued a proclamation denying the 1973 constitution as amended and promulgating a “Freedom Constitution”. By taking the oath before a Punong Barangay, within your department of government, not even before an associate justice or a trial court judge, are there intentions to do the same?

On June 30, 2010 the President-elect will take his oath of office, hopefully before the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. This is a ceremony not only between Noynoy Aquino and Renato Corona. The act of taking your oath is not a statement against Gloria Macapagal Arroyo. It is to affirm that you accept the trust given to you by the Filipino people and promise this before the branch of government charged with the protection of the constitution. You can attack the former President, even the person of the Chief Justice if you want to, during your inaugural address–although I do not think that that also will make good politics. For example, you will have a series of appointments caused by some vacancies in the Supreme Court within your term. The JBC is under the supervision of the Supreme Court. The Chief Justice presides over the JBC.

There is a difference between criticism of a decision of the Supreme Court as a private citizen and the acts that you do as the potential incumbent of the Office of the President of the Republic. As a citizen you are accountable only to yourself, your community and your culture and its people. As the President, you represent more than yourself or your immediate communities. You take on a formal persona. In many constitutional doctrines, you even shed some of your rights as a citizen.

Let this be my first unsolicited advise to you: Be the President of the Republic of the Philippines. Act that part. Take your oath before the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, whoever its incumbent may be. There are many other ways to improve the administration of justice. (For example, immediately get a good Secretary of Justice and a competent Solicitor General)

You may read more of Dean Leonen’s legal views in his personal blog: http://leonen.typepad.com

Posted in 2010 elections, Blogs, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, Noynoy Aquino, Opinion, Philippine politics, Video | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Aquino may be sworn in by barangay captain

Posted by akosistella on May 15, 2010


TARLAC CITY, Philippines — A controversy is in the offing, with presidential front-runner Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III considering being sworn in as President by a barangay captain in his home province, and not by Chief Justice Reynato Puno’s successor.

“[The Constitution] says that before assuming office, the President will subscribe under oath. It does not say [before whom]. I am waiting for my lawyers’ opinion, but [my oath of office] will probably be before the barangay captain of Tarlac,” the Liberal Party standard-bearer said Friday at a press conference.

By tradition, a new President takes his/her oath before the Chief Justice.

via INQUIRER.net.


Aquino’s plan to ‘snub’ Corona to embarrass RP — poll lawyer

Should leading presidential bet Sen. Benigno Simeon “Noynoy” Aquino III be finally proclaimed winner, a poll lawyer advised the Liberal Party standard bearer to drop a plan not to take oath before the newly appointed Supreme Court chief justice.

A dzBB report quoted former administration poll lawyer Romulo Macalintal as saying that Aquino’s plan not to take oath before incoming Supreme Court Justice Renato Corona would be an embarrassment for the country.

Corona was appointed as the next SC chief justice by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo on Wednesday.

Via GMA News.TV


JPE kay Noynoy: ‘Di ka pa presidente para mag-utos’

MANILA – Pinangaralan ni Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile si leading presidential candidate Senator Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III na hindi pa siya ganap na presidente para mag-utos sa kasalukuyang administrasyong Arroyo.

Ang pahayag ay ginawa ni Enrile kaugnay sa pagkakapili ni Pangulong Gloria Macapagal Arroyo kay Supreme Court (SC) Associate Justice Renato Corona bilang kapalit ng magreretirong si Chief Justice Reynato Puno sa Mayo 17.

Sinabi ni Enrile na wala pang kapangyarihan si Aquino na utusan si Gng Arroyo na bawiin ang paghirang nito kay Corona dahil sa katapusan pa ng Hunyo matatapos ang termino ng kasalukuyang lider.

Via GMANews.TV

Posted in 2010 elections, News, Noynoy Aquino, Philippine politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »


Posted by akosistella on May 14, 2010


Phil. Star: Derailed

Can votes ever be counted with a semblance of order in certain areas of Mindanao? Days after the Commission on Elections announced the likely winner in the presidential race, and with winners in many local contests already proclaimed, the nation is still waiting for the results from the usual trouble spots in Mindanao. Violence, documented on video, has erupted, and accusations of vote buying and cheating are flying in the Lanao provinces and the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

via Philippine Star.

Inquirer: Shameful

THE NEWLY PROCLAIMED REPRESENTATIVE OF the second district of Pampanga, President Macapagal-Arroyo, has an urgent message for the nation: “Don’t get too excited over the election results; with me, it’s still politics as usual.” A mere two days after the country’s first, and generally successful, nationwide automated elections, and only five days before Chief Justice Reynato Puno retires from the Supreme Court, she created a new position: that of Chief-Justice-in-waiting. The timing, and the choice of her former aide, Justice Renato Corona, tell us the appointment was yet one more political act of the most politically partisan president since 1986.

Via Inquirer

Vulture eyeing a midnight feast

THE scramble for the last peso that could be extorted in the last two minutes of the Arroyo administration is on. There no more big-ticket contracts to award. There are no buyers for the remaining government crown jewels set for privatization. But there’s still the old reliable “audit” of corporate taxpayers and the resulting “areglo.” Peanuts compared to the foiled NBN-ZTE deal, perhaps, but a few millions here and there pretty soon add up to a substantial sum, to crib from the late Everett Dirksen, the curmudgeon at the US Senate.

Via Malaya

Daily Tribune: Hostile territory

Sen. Noynoy Aquino, who is leading in the unofficial presidential tally, should rethink his exclusive stance on the presidency as if he, the comebacking civil socialites, and the Liberal Party (LP) would be all that is needed to run the country.

Via Daily Tribune

Manila Times: Two cheers for digital democracy

It appears that JC [delos Reyes], Senator Jamby Madrigal and Nick Perlas have evidence that something rotten has happened in the the way the counting was carried out by the Precinct Optical Count Scan (PCOS) machines’ software or memory cards and whatever or whoever. So they are asking the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to probe into the irregularities.

Via Manila Times

Posted in 2010 elections | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »


Posted by akosistella on May 14, 2010


Estrada’s amazing performance

But the fact that Estrada, invariably dismissed by analysts early in the election campaign as the either a “spoiler” or “a kingmaker”, one who can help ensure the victory of one candidate in a close contest by his endorsement, running second, overtaking the high-financed campaign of Manuel Villar, showed his strong hold on the masses who comprise the bulk of the 50 million voters despite his being convicted of plunder . (Estrada was convicted of plunder in 2006 after more than six years in detention but was pardoned by Gloria Arroyo a month after.)

Click Ellen Tordesillas

Belmonte will be speaker
AS I SEE IT By Neal Cruz

STOP THINKING OF GLORIA MACAPAGAL-Arroyo as speaker of the House of Representatives. The next speaker will be Quezon City Mayor Feliciano Belmonte, who has been elected congressman. He is the choice of President-to-be Noynoy Aquino.

Contrary to popular opinion, it is not the congressmen who choose their speaker. The president does. Congressmen only ratify what he orders.

Click Neal Cruz

President of all Filipinos
VECTOR By Sonny Coloma

Benigno Simeon “Noynoy” Cojuangco Aquino III’s comprehensive victory in last Monday’s elections underlines a most salient reality: he is expected by his countrymen to govern and lead as President of all Filipinos.

Click Sonny Coloma

Calls mount for Corona to decline appointment
GOTCHA By Jarius Bondoc

As expected outgoing President Arroyo announced her choice of new Chief Justice even if incumbent Reynato Puno is yet to retire on May 17. She is kicking up a firestorm for not letting the next President on June 30 do it. A day after assuring Filipinos of smooth transition to a new admin, Arroyo is back to divisive spiteful politics. A day after being proclaimed winner — in an unprecedented congressional run while in Malacañang — she revived suspicions of her ploy. That is, to gain immunity from suit for plunder and abuse via prolonged stay in power and a Supreme Court wholly appointed by her.

Click Jarius Bondoc

Churlish parting shot
ANALYSIS By Amando Doronila

DEPARTING PRESIDENT MACAPAGAL-ARROYO fired a churlish parting shot Wednesday when Malacañang announced that she had “chosen” Associate Justice Renato Corona to be the next chief justice of the Supreme Court upon the retirement of Chief Justice Reynato Puno on May 17.

Click Amando Doronila

FRONTLINE By Ninez Cacho-Olivares

Just what makes Noynoy think that it is his right, and not Gloria’s, to appoint the next CJ? Who is the sole interpreter and arbiter of the law? The president of the republic or the SC? Who the heck does Noynoy think he is? Hello, he has not even been proclaimed president-elect and he thinks he is higher than the law itself!

Click Ninez Cacho-Olivares

‘Administration’ and ‘government’ are not the same
BIG DEAL By Dan Mariano

I am sometimes made to feel that TV reporters should stick to simply delivering breaking news. Far too often, whenever these self-styled broadcast journalists try to engage in news analysis, they not only reveal their ignorance, they also mislead their viewers.

Click Dan Mariano

Understanding the power-rate increase

The recent increase in electricity rates saw our bills increase by as much as 80 percent, with some households and small businesses paying the cost equivalent of a small secondhand generator. Despite information campaigns and a policy of transparency in electricity pricing, the sudden increases have led to wild speculations on its rationale—going from the plausible to the absurd.

Click Dean dela Paz

Election results 2010
AMBIENT VOICES By Ma. Isabel Ongpin

It took me the longest time to vote on Election Day, but I was not alone. The neighborhood trooped to the public school designated as the polling place and amid a welter of papers, posters, banners—all representing a candidate or other, through a crowd of people from all walks of life, assaulted by heat and chaos trying to organize itself into some order. I finally got the picture, which was to line up along a corridor near our polling booth to get a designated number. The line had to make a u-turn and it was slow going but I met a neighbor and we carried on a catch-up conversation. In the time of about an hour and a half, all those with numbers were put into a holding room, which was a classroom with school desks. There we sat moving from row to row as numbers were called into the next room where the PCOS machine was and where we looked up our names, signed and received the long, unfamiliar ballot.

Click Maribel Ongpin

Posted in 2010 elections, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, Joseph Estrada, Manny Villar, Noynoy Aquino, Philippine politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Opinion writers

Posted by akosistella on May 10, 2010


Our week (or months) of living dangerously

Today is the day! In all of my 60 years, there have been very few days I approached with more trepidation than today. It isn’t even about me because the way I see it, my role and priorities have changed as a new dual citizen. Seeing the big picture and thinking less of “what’s in it for me” comes easier when you know most of your years are now history.

The reason today makes me so anxious is because I get the feeling that today, we approach an important crossroad for the country and future generations of our people. We have little margin for error and errors have already started to happen. Sara Soliven De Guzman, a colleague at PhilStar captures the feeling well in her Facebook post: “Exciting times in the Philippines… even if danger lurks beneath the shadows of darkness….”

Click Boo Chanco.

THERE’S THE RUB By Conrado de Quiros

A couple of weeks ago, a group asked me to be one of several people to utter a prayer for the elections. It was in the nature of a panalangin, a plea to heaven for the kind of future we want.

On my way to the place, I thought of this: “I pray to heaven to end the lying, stealing, cheating and murdering that have been rioting in this country all these years. I pray to heaven to give this country the respite it so badly needs and the deliverance it so badly wants.

Click Conrado de Quiros

A time for prayer and civility

Our Heavenly Father, please send down your righteousness, wisdom and mercy on the Filipino people, especially at these critical days of our national elections. We earnestly pray that this vital and crucial process will be carried out peacefully, honestly and successfully, and that the will and rights of the people will be upheld. This we ask through Christ our Lord. Amen

Click Ducky Paredes

Smartmatic’s listed owners/election watchdog fights
GOTCHA By Jarius Bondoc

Smartmatic was involved in the Muslim Autonomous Region’s 2008 election. At that time its local partner was Strategic Alliance Holdings Inc. to supply touch-screen voting machines. In SEC records Smartmatic-SAHI’s incorporators included Filipinos Juan C. Villa Jr., Cezar T. Quiambao, Saviniano M. Perez Jr., Jorge M. Yulo, and Miguel Antonio M. Villa, and Spanish Alberto Castro.

News reports and blogs, quoting IT and corporate sources, have linked the Villas and Quiambao to First Gentleman Mike Arroyo and Interior Sec. Ronnie Puno. Allegedly they are golf and business buddies, along with Ernest Villareal, Arroyo’s pal and one-time head of the Public Estates Authority.

Click Jarius Bondoc

To cheat one is to cheat all
THE LONG VIEW By Manuel L. Quezon III

YESTERDAY gang Badoy asked supporters of all candidates to wear white and gather, quietly and peacefully, to watch the sunset at Manila Bay.

The day of decision is here. As I told Veronica Pedrosa on Al-Jazeera on Saturday, we will be deciding on more than the candidates we will vote for today. I’d like to expand on what I told her.

Click Manolo Quezon

In all likelihood
FRONTLINE By Ninez Cacho-Olivares

It is almost certain that the Commission on Elections (Comelec) has not purged the voters’ list as it should have been purged of zombie registrants, but if the election board officials will be doing their job right, then it is possible that a chunk of the zombie registrants would not be voting multiple times.

If that happens, then there would be much less than the 40 million extrapolated numbers of voters, and much much less than the Noynoy boast of an 8-million lead for him, which is silly, as these are survet numbers, not actual votes.

Click Ninez Cacho Olivares.

AND: Election survival guide for journalists by Ellen Tordesillas

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It’s wait and see for investors

Posted by akosistella on May 10, 2010


MANILA, Philippines – Foreign investors have adopted a wait-and-see attitude, putting on hold or temporarily withdrawing their investments in the Philippines due to jitters over today’s elections, according to Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Deputy Governor Diwa Guinigundo.

“We continue to see inflows from the external markets. Perhaps if there will be – we don’t have the numbers yet – it is because of election jitters,” Guinigundo said.

He pointed out that foreign investors could have adopted a wait-and-see attitude because of the uncertainties brought about by the May 10 elections.

via Philippine Star.


Where are they voting?

MANILA, Philippines – The country holds its first fully automated general elections today, with about 50 million Filipinos expected to pick a new president, vice president and officials to fill nearly 18,000 national and local posts.

Among them are nine candidates seeking the highest office in the land.

Liberal Party standard-bearer Sen. Benigno Aquino III will vote this morning at Precinct 1758 Central Azucarera Elementary School in Sitio Alto Barangay Central in San Miguel, Tarlac.

Via Phil. Star

Supreme Court ready to resolve auto poll cases

MANILA, Philippines – The Supreme Court (SC) is ready to resolve protests that could arise from the country’s first automated elections today.

SC spokesman Jose Midas Marquez said the High Court is ready to convene as presidential electoral tribunal (PET) after the polls and upon effectivity of its rules as approved by the magistrates before going on recess last week.

“With the new PET Rules out, the Supreme Court is ready to convene as the PET if and when the need arises,” Marquez said.

Via Phil. Star

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SC junks petitions to postpone May 10 polls

Posted by akosistella on May 7, 2010


MANILA, Philippines (UPDATE) It’s all systems go for the country’s first automated elections on May 10 as the Supreme Court dismissed all petitions seeking the postponement of the polls, a spokesman for the high court said Friday.

The petitioners failed “to exhaust all remedies” and there was “no grave abuse of discretion” on the part of the Commission on Elections when it pursued the computerization of the elections, said lawyer Jose Midas Marquez after the court’s special en banc session.

Marquez said the petitions filed by the Concerned Citizens Movement CCM, former president Joseph Estrada and the Philippine Computer Society PCS suffered from technicalities.

via INQUIRER.net.


SC ruling on disclosure of poll preparations unnecessary — Comelec exec

The Supreme Court ruling ordering the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to bare all details about the preparations for the automated polls on Monday is unnecessary, a poll body official said Friday.

Comelec spokesman James Jimenez said there was no need for the order, claiming the poll body has always been transparent in the implementation of the automation project.

“We have no qualms whatsover in showing our work,” Jimenez said at a press briefing on Friday.

Via GMANews.TV

AND: Palace relieved by SC decision to junk petitions seeking poll postponement

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SC to Comelec: Disclose automation preparations fully

Posted by akosistella on May 7, 2010


MANILA, Philippines – The Supreme Court (SC) on Thursday ordered the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to disclose to the public important details regarding the technical aspects of the preparations it made for the May 10 automated nationwide elections.

According to a court press release, the court En Banc issued the decision in the light of “alarming details in the run-up” to the elections.

In a resolution penned by Senior Justice Antonio T. Carpio, the Court directed the Comelec to disclose the following information to the public within 2 days upon receving its copy of the resolution:

Via ABS-CBN News


Vote-counting may be delayed in some areas, Comelec says

(Update 2 – 4:37 PM) Counting of votes in 5 percent of areas in the country — including Maguindanao, the site of a massacre last year — may be delayed by at least one day because compact flash cards to be used for poll machines may possibly arrive late, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) said on Thursday.

“At worst,” counting and transmission of more than three million votes will be conducted on May 11 — a day after the elections — since the cards for the Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machines in some areas may be delivered only on that date, Comelec chairman Jose Melo said.

“That is the worst scenario… there would still be precincts in very, very remote areas without the flash cards having been delivered and tested,” Melo said during a press briefing on Thursday.

via GMANews.TV.


DepEd exec laments absence of guidelines on manual counting

MANILA, Philippines—Over 200,000 teachers taking part in the electoral process are apprehensive about glitches in the automated counting of votes, but are ready for anything, an education official said Thursday.

The 229,020 teachers to be deployed for Monday’s elections as part of the board of election inspectors did not anticipate the foul-ups in the trial runs of the testing and sealing of the voting tally machines in Luzon.

“We did not anticipate these glitches,” Education Undersecretary Franklin Sunga said at a Malacañang news briefing. “Definitely the apprehensions will be there.”

Via Inquirer.net

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