Author Archives: Administrator

South China Sea dispute: ‘China and US should stay out’ – ILPS-Phils

Tuesday, 12 July 2016 | Written by

Ahead of the UN Permanent Court of Arbitration ruling on the disputed South China Sea, the Philippines chapter of the International League of People’s Struggle (ILPS-Phils) warned that “both China and the U.S. should stay out and immediately defuse the powder keg situation.”

China has launched several live fire war games and the U.S. continues to patrol with its aircraft carrier strike group and destroyers. China has accused the U.S. of trying to turn the disputed area into a “powder keg”.

“It is best for the Philippines and the region to respect the UN tribunal ruling and for both China and the U.S. to pull-out their troops from the area. We don’t want a powder keg to blow up, it must be defused,” ILPS-Phils Chair Elmer Labog said.

The ILPS-Phils joined protesters outside the Chinese embassy to demand a “CHexit” or China exit from the West Philippine Sea. They likewise lambasted the U.S for “imperialist intervention” in the dispute.

“We welcome Pres. Duterte’s diplomatic tact to talk with China and resolve the dispute by peaceful means. Philippine sovereignty must always be upheld and protected from foreign intervention and aggression,” Labog said.

Newly-elected Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has recently criticized the U.S. of “exporting terrorism” citing Iraq, Libya and Syria in the Middle East.

China is expected to disregard the ruling and maintain its claims. It is poised to enforce an air defense identification zone with a military outpost being built on Scarborough (Panatag) Shoal.

Five Chinese coast Guard vessels have been keeping Filipino fishermen at bay from Panatag Shoal.

The international tribunal acted on a petition from the Philippines disputing China’s so-called nine-dash line claims, reclamation and other activities encroaching on Philippine exclusive economic zones and continental shelf waters. Five other claimants – Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, Taiwan and Vietnam – have a maritime dispute with China.

DENR suspends two mining firms in Zambales

Tuesday, 12 July 2016 | Written by

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has suspended two nickel mining firms in Zambales.

Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) Director Leo Jasareno identified the two suspended mining firms as the Zambales Diversified Metals Corporation (ZDMC) and the Benguetcorp Nickel Mines, Inc, (BNMI). MGB is a line bureau under the DENR.

According to Jasareno, the suspension of the two mining companies stemmed from “various alleged environmental crimes, violations of the mining and environmental laws, and complaints of various groups against the alleged environmental impacts” of their mining operations.

The suspension of ZDMC and BNMI was contained in a letter addressed to Cesar F. Simbulan, Jr., President of ZDMC, and Leopoldo P. Sison, President of BNMI. MGB Region 3 Director Lope O. Cariño, Environmental Management Bureau Region 3 Director Lormelyn E. Claudio and DENR Region 3 Director Francisco E. Milla, Jr. signed the letter.

The letter, dated July 7, 2016, referred to the Writ of Kalikasan issued by the Supreme Court in the case filed by the Concerned Citizens of Santa Cruz, Zambales (GR No. 224375) against the mining operations in Zambales, Executive Order No. 01 issued by the Provincial Government of Zambales suspending the said mining operations and the complaints filed by various private groups.

It said that the suspension will “ensure that the environment, particularly the communities, farmlands and water bodies are not compromised as a result of the mining operations pursuant to the pertinent mining and environmental laws.”

The letter ordered the two companies to comply with the conditions cited, among which are to address the issues arising from the tree-cutting and earthballing operations, the completion of construction of an exclusive mine haul road, rehabilitation of mined-out and open areas, and the full deposit of the Final Mine Rehabilitation/Decommissioning Funds.

It also directed the rehabilitation and compensation of all owners of farmlands, fishponds and water bodies adversely affected by the mining operations, and the repair of all damaged portions of roads as a result of hauling operations.

A composite team of the DENR will conduct an audit of the mining operations of both firms to determine compliance with the mining and environmental laws.

In 2014, a suspension order was issued by MGB Region 3 to the other operating nickel mines in Zambales: lnl Archipelago Minerals, lnc. and Eramen Minerals, Inc. on the extraction and future expansion of their mining areas until they have employed systematic mining methods by removing all stockpiles in the mining area and piling them in designated stockpile areas equipped with proper drainage system. They were also ordered to implement a care and maintenance plan/measures for the duration of the suspension order.

With the latest suspension order, all 4 large-scale mining operations in Zambales are now suspended

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DSWD joins observance of National Disaster Consciousness Month

Friday, 8 July 2016 | Written by
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dswdncrAs the number of man-made and natural disasters increases every year, the need to enhance the public’s awareness and participation in disaster management, preparedness, and response is necessary to mitigate the impacts of calamities happening in the country.

This month of July, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) joins the whole country in observance of the National Disaster Consciousness Month (NDCM) in order to increase the public’s awareness on the government’s disaster preparedness programs.

With the theme, “Kahandaan at Pagtugon sa Sakuna, Tungkulin ng Bawat Isa”, the event focuses on raising awareness and people’s readiness in facing disasters such as earthquakes, typhoons, fires, and the impacts of climate change.

In line with the month-long event, DSWD will conduct a Disaster Response Communication Training and Field Testing, happening from July 4 to July 9, 2016 in La Breza Hotel, Quezon City. The training highlights the importance of effective communication as a vital element in Disaster Response Operations.

Led by the DSWD Disaster Response Assistance and Management Bureau (DREAMB), participants coming from various DSWD bureaus, units, services and field offices are expected to develop understanding on

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the basics of emergency telecommunications in disaster situations.

This is in line with DSWD Secretary Judy Taguiwalo’s pledge to ensure the timely and adequate response of the department during emergency and calamity situations.

The DSWD also encourages their employees to participate in the NDCM by using the official hashtag, #ResiliencePH, in their social media posts to effectively disseminate all information regarding the event.

Sec. Taguiwalo said that under the new administration, the DSWD will be assessing and evaluating its programs and policies pertaining to disaster management to improve them and make them more effective and responsive to the needs of those who will be affected by calamities.

“Based on what we have experienced during typhoons Yolanda and Pablo, it is clear that much needs to be done to improve our efforts when it comes to disaster management, particularly in the phases of relief and recovery. The DSWD has the means and resources to immediately respond to calamities and emergencies.

The effectiveness of the plans, however, has been subject to much criticism and vilification from thousands of Filipinos who cry out how they were not given assistance when they needed it most. To address this, we are currently assessing and reviewing our program, and most importantly we are consulting with grassroots people’s organizations all over the country to determine what needs to be done to improve the department’s disaster response and how it is implemented on the ground,” the Secretary said.

Taas-matrikula sa 304 na kolehiyo, huling pabaon ni Aquino

Wednesday, 6 July 2016 | Written by

Hanggang sa kaduluduluhan ng kanyang termino, walang ibang hatid ang gobyernong Aquino kundi dagdag na pasakit para sa mga estudyante. Ito ang tawag ng Anakbayan sa pag-apruba ng Commission on Higher Education (CHED) sa muling pagtataas sa matrikula at iba pang bayarin sa 304 na pribadong unibersidad at kolehiyo sa bansa.

Sa nabanggit na 304 na paaralan, 280 ang magtataas ng matrikula at 252 ang magtataas ng iba pang bayarin para sa taong 2016-2017. Hindi ito malayo sa naaprubahang 313 noong nakaraang taon ngunit nagsisilbi pa ring pasanin sa mamamayan.

Aabot sa P43.39 ang national average na itataas na matrikula kada yunit. Dagdag pa rito ang laki ng itataas sa iba pang bayarin, na aabot sa national average na P115.58.

Kung susumahin ay aabot sa P647.01 kada yunit ang magiging karaniwang singil kada semestre na katumbas sa P11,646.18 para sa 18 yunit at P19,410.30 para sa 30 yunit. Ito ay aabot sa P38,820.60 para sa isang taon, hindi pa kasama ang mga ibang bayarin na inaasahang magpapalaki pa nang husto sa nasabing bilang.

Aabot sa 70 pamantasan ang pinayagang magtaas sa NCR kung saan P68.44 ang average na pagtaas. Sa Rehiyon VII naman, 11 pamantasan ang pinayagang magtaas na aabot sa average na P101.13. Maging ang P9.09 na itataas sa isang pribadong paaralan sa Rehiyon IV-B ay magiging isang hadlang sa karapatan ng kabataan sa edukasyon.

Ayon sa CHED, ang pag-apruba nito sa taas-matrikula ay ginagabayan ng Education Act of 1982 na naipasa noong panahon ng diktaduryang Marcos. Pinapahintulutan ng nasabing batas ang mga pribadong pamantasan na magtakda ng pagtataas ng sariling matrikula at ng ibang mga bayarin nito, basta naaayon sa guidelines ng komisyon.

Sa CHED Memorandum Order No. 3 Series of 2012, na inapubrahan sa ilalim ni Aquino, bukod sa awtomatikong pagtataas ng matrikula taun-taon ay pinasahol pa ito at idinagdag ang pagpapataw ng iba’t iba pang mga bayarin.

Walang dudang higit nitong palalalain ang komersyalisadong katangian ng mga pribadong unibersidad at kolehiyo, kung saan ang mga mag-aaral at ang kanilang pamilya ay binabagsakan ng buong bigat ng mga bayarin habang ang mga pribadong institusyon ang nakikinabang sa tubo.

Ang pagtaas muli ng matrikula at iba pang bayarin sa mga pribadong pamantasan ay isang mukha ng nagaganap nang pribatisasyon, deregulasyon, at liberalisasyon ng mga pampublikong mga unibersidad at kolehiyo.

Sa pagpapatupad ng mga neoliberal na patakaran sa edukasyon, ang mga mag-aaral ay itinuturing na mga kliyente na binibili ang dapat sana’y kanilang karapatan sa edukasyon. Sa kabilang banda, ang mga dayuhang kapitalista at mga lokal na kumprador ang nagpipiyesta sa tubo at sa mga oportunidad na mapataas pa lalo ito.

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Duterte at Kabataang Makabayan

Wednesday, 6 July 2016 | Written by
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Sa mga pahayag ni Duterte mula sa kanyang kampanya sa pagkapangulo, mariin ang kanyang pagbanggit sa pakikipagtulungan sa mga progresibong grupo, pagiging kaalyado, pagtalima sa ilang programa nito at ang minsang pag-amin din na siya mismo ay miyembro ng Kabataang Makabayan (KM), isang rebolusyonaryong organisasyon ng kabataan na itinatag noong 1964.

Si Duterte ay napag-alamang naging estudyante ni Prop. Jose Ma. Sison, isa sa mga naging pangunahing tagapagtatag ng KM, bago ito tuluyang sumapi sa kilusang lihim noong taong 1968. Si Sison, na kasalukuyang naka-exile sa The Netherlands mula pa noong 1986, ang tagapangulong tagapagtatag ng Partido Komunista ng Pilipinas noong muli itong itatag noong 1968.

Kasabay ng pag-amin ni Duterte sa kanyang pagiging dating kasapi ng KM at pagkilala niya sa rebolusyonaryong tradisyon ng kabataan, nalantad din ang ilan pang mga kilalang personahe na minsan ding naging bahagi nito. Ngunit ano nga ba ang Kabataang Makabayan?

Kabataang Makabayan

Ang Kabataang Makabayan (KM) ay isang komprehensibong organisasyon ng kabataan na itinatag noong Nobyembre 30, 1964, sa eksaktong ika-101 anibersaryo ng kapanganakan ni Gat Andres Bonifacio bilang pagpupugay sa pagtatatag niya sa Katipunan at pamumuno sa Rebolusyong 1896. Sa araw ng pagkakatatag nito, nanumpa ang mga kasapi ng KM na ipagpapatuloy nila ang hindi pa natatapos na rebolusyon ni Bonifacio at pinagtibay nila ang pagsusulong ng isang pambansa demokratikong programa.

Ang KM ang nanguna sa pagpupukaw, pag-oorganisa, at pagpapakilos sa maraming kabataan at mamamayan bago pa man ideklara ang batas militar. Nanguna ito sa paglunsad ng mga malawakang kilos protesta hinggil sa maraming isyu gaya ng gerang agresyon ng US sa Vietnam, pagtataas ng presyo ng langis, base militar, kurapsyon, at iba pa. Ang KM ang sinasabing nagbigay-daan sa pagkakatatag ng marami pang mga pambansa demokratikong pangmasang organisasyon na di kalaunan ay ipinagbawal ni Marcos.

Sa pagdeklara ng batas militar, nagsimula itong maging bahagi ng rebolusyonaryong kilusang lihim at nagpapatuloy hanggang sa kasalukuyan.

Ipinagpapatuloy ng KM ang rebolusyonaryong tradisyon ng Katipunan na lumaban para sa pambansang kalayaan at demokrasya laban sa pyudal at dayuhang dominasyon sa ating bansa. Ngunit naniniwala rin ang KM sa pagkakaroon ng bagong tipo ng rebolusyong isinusulong bilang sagot sa agresyong imperyalista, burukrata kapitalista, at mga pyudal na naghaharing uri sa kanayunan na nagpapanatili ng mala-kolonyal at mala-pyudal ng katangian ng lipunang Pilipino. Ito ay ang pambansa demokratikong rebolusyong bayan na may sosyalistang perspektiba sa pamumuno ng uring proletaryado.

Mga tungkulin ng Kabataang Makabayan

Inako ng KM ang masusing papel bilang makabayan at progresibong taliba ng kabataang Pilipino na katuwang ng uring proletaryado sa pamumuno sa bagong demokratikong rebolusyon. Itinatag ito bilang isang komprehensibong organisasyon ng kabataang mula sa hanay ng mga manggagawa, magsasaka at panggitnang uri. Ito ang nagsisilbing balon at tagapagsanay ng mga aktibista sa hayag na pambansa demokratikong kilusan at mga bagong kadreng rebolusyonaryo.

Ipinaglalaban ng KM ang pagkakaroon ng ganap na pambansang kalayaan, tunay na reporma sa lupa at pambansang industriyalisasyon, isang makabayan, siyentipiko, at makamasang kultura, at isang patakarang panlabas na malaya sa dayuhang dikta at para sa pagkakaisa ng mga bansa, kapayapaan at kaunlaran, laban sa mga imperyalismo at iba pang reaksyon.

Ang Kabataang Makabayan ngayon

Ang radikalismo ng KM ay malayo sa elitistang modelo ng pamumuno ng kabataan na itinuturo sa mga kabataan sa kasalukuyan. Ang pulitikal na praktika ng KM ay hindi basta lamang nagpapalimita sa reporma at mga nililikhang espasyo na handog ng estado, kundi nakikipaghawak-kamay ito sa mga pinagsasamantalahan at sinisikap na kolektibong banggain ang mga institusyon at sistema na nagpapanatili sa hindi pantay na kaayusan ng ating lipunan.

Ang KM ay nananatiling buhay at nagbibigay ng radikal na alternatibo sa kabataan at mamamayang Pilipino.

Sa gitna ng tumitinding pang-aapi at pagsasamantalang dinaranas ng kabataan at mamamayan, makatwiran at napapanahon ang pag-anib ng kabataan sa mga organisasyong sumusuporta sa mga katulad na panawagan at pananaw ng KM. Dapat kumilos ang kabataang Pilipino upang ilantad at labanan ang sistema ng pang-aapi at pagsasamantala na nagpapahirap sa masang Pilipino. Higit kailanman, marapat ang pagpapatuloy ng pakikibaka ng KM–ang pakikibaka para sa tunay na kalayaan at pambansang demokrasya.

CEGP: 25 years of CJA of 1991, 25 years of bogus campus press freedom

Tuesday, 5 July 2016 | Written by

“We are supposedly celebrating the 25th year of the Republic Act No. 7079, also known as Campus Journalism Act of 1991, which brought back false hopes to campus press freedom after the Martial Law, but why should we commemorate this legislation when it has further repressed the valiant voice of the campus press?” said Marc Lino Abila, national president of College Editors Guild of the Philippines.

The Campus Journalism Act of 1991 was enacted on July 5, 1991 by President Corazon Aquino which aims to “uphold and protect the freedom of the press even at the campus level” following the shutdown of radio and television stations, newspapers and all forms of media including student publications during the Martial Law. But instead of strengthening the freedom and rights of the student press, it legalized campus press suppression.

“Press freedom is a constitutional right that is enshrined, bold and clear, in the 1987 Constitution. We should be exercising our mandate without fear but our numbers are also boldly and clearly delineate that this fundamental right is dishonored,” Abila said.

The Guild documented more than 200-400 cases of campus press freedom violations every year since 2010. Violations such as harassment of student writers and editors, meddling with editorial policies, censorship of editorial content, withholding of publication funds, non-collection of publication fee, padlocking of the publication office, closure of the student publication, suspension and expulsion of student editors and writers, and worse, filing of libel charges against student journalists.

“What was wrong about CJA of 1991 is that, it does not contain penalty clause. Member bpublications of the Guild have been through this in 25 years yet not a single person or school administration was penalized for such violations,” Abila furthered.

The campus journalist cited the libel case of a former Editor-in-Chief of Outcrop, the student publication of the University of the Philippines Baguio after publishing a blind item. The promulgation of the verdict has been continually stalled.

Also recently, during the 2016 National Elections, Liberal Party (LP) supporters and UP Diliman Police (UPDP) harassed staff members of Tinig ng Plaridel (TNP), the student publication of UP College of Mass Communication, and Union of Journalists of the Philippines-UP Diliman (UJP-UPD) who were covering a NAPC-organized event but were barred by the UPDP to enter the venue for “security reasons” even after asserting that they are members of the campus press. They were also “verbally abused, called out and jeered by the LP crowd.

CEGP pointed that under the current law meant to protect the student media; instead of serving a guarantee of the democratic right, it serves the contrast:

(1) It legalizes the non-mandatory collection of publication fee, which is considered as the lifeblood of most student publications. The law does not contain any provision that would mandate school administrations to collect student publication funds. Instead, it only enumerates the sources where the student publication funds may be taken.

(2) Section 7 of the law supposedly gives freedom and space for student journalists to write without fear of any threat of suspension or expulsion, the qualification made by the Supreme Court on the said provision by providing exemptions has rendered the security on tenure provision practically useless. One notable exemption is “material disruption of class work or involving substantial disorder or invasion of the rights of others,” which is too broad that even a simple factual article may fall within its application.

(3) The law does not make it mandatory for all colleges and universities in the Philippines to establish student publications. Neither does the said law require that those student publications that remain closed until the present be re-opened for the benefit of students.

(4) The law does not contain a penalty clause, leaving erring administrations unscathed. School administrations are able to commit offense after offense yet suffer no retribution due to the absence of a penalty provision.

(5) The Department of Education, Culture and Sports Order No. 94, Series of 1992, the implementing rules and regulations of the law, contains simply guidelines on the implementation of its provisions with the additional rules on jurisdiction over cases that may arise from violations of the said law. As the implementing rules and regulations cannot lawfully narrow or restrict and expand, broaden, or enlarge the provisions of the law, DECS Order No. 1994 naturally carries the weaknesses of Campus Journalism Act of 1991.

“As the 17th Congress begins session on July 25, we express our high hopes that they will consider scrapping CJA of 1991 and instead pass the Campus Press Freedom Bill introduced by Kabataan Partylist in the 15th and 16th Congress. This legilastion aims to genuinely protect campus press freedom to foster a free and democratic atmosphere for student publications to fulfill their duties and responsibilities to the Filipino youth and people,” noted Abila.

“Our struggle for genuine campus press freedom will continue as long as there is repression to the rights of the campus press. As a veritable foundation of student democratic rights, student publications must be resolute in our fight against all forms of campus press repression,” Abila ended.

LFS to new DFA chief: there are several compelling reasons to junk EDCA

Monday, 4 July 2016 | Written by

“There are several compelling reasons to review and abrogate the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) between the Philippines and the United States of America. It does not only humiliatingly allow the wanton violation of our national sovereignty and territorial integrity; it also places the lives of the Filipino people at risks.”

This is the statement of League of Filipino Students (LFS) national spokesperson JP Rosos after Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) secretary Perfecto Yasay Jr. said that Philippines is committed in implementing EDCA.

In his first press conference yesterday, Yasay explained that there will be no move to review the agreement. According to him, there are no requests from any of the parties to EDCA to review the same document.

But Rosos claimed that this is an “unacceptable reasoning.” According to the youth leader, the new DFA chief should not defend EDCA especially when the Filipino people have repeatedly expressed their desire to junk the agreement.

“It will be foolish to expect the US to request for a review of the agreement especially when EDCA is too lopsided that it only entails various benefits for the US government while it spells doom for the Filipino people,” said Rosos.

Rosos reminded Yasay that EDCA allows the construction of U.S. bases in Philippine lands. According to the youth leader, the fact that U.S. Congress earmarked $66 million for the construction of their facilities means that the US will safeguard their sovereign control over these locations. He added that Article III, IV, and XI of EDCA guaranteed the unimpeded access, full control, and unencumbered rights to the so-called Agreed Locations.

Rosos also noted that Article IV, Sections 3 and 4 of the agreement states that the US has “exclusive use” and “full title” over the prepositioned equipment, supplies, and materiel. He said that these provisions reflect how US intends to make the Philippines their own military base to pursue their interests.

“EDCA will only make the Philippines a military outpost for the US’ rebalancing or pivot to East Asia. It will only serve to protect and advance US’ dominance in the region. It does not have a single respect on our sovereignty and worse, it endangers our people,” Rosos said.

Rosos also pointed out that the next administration should consider all the atrocities committed by the US troops to our country men.

“When they (US troops) stayed in our country through the Military

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Bases Agreement (MBA), our countrymen experienced persecution and human rights violations. Children were being shot for fun and treated like pigs. Even after their return through the Visiting Forces Agreement, cases of killings, rape, and other violations continue. Worse, not a single American soldier was held accountable,” said Rosos.

According to Rosos, EDCA is reminiscent of the vicious MBA. According to him, former president BS Aquino has insulted our heroes by selling out our sovereignty and territorial integrity. He added that the previous regime has placed the lives of the Filipino people in danger.

LFS also appealed to President Rodrigo Duterte to consider his stand regarding EDCA. Rosos said that there is no meaning in upholding international agreements that are lopsided and places the Filipinos at a disadvantage.

“We believe that it is within the powers of the new president to revoke the agreement. We urge president Duterte to listen to the pleas of the youth and the people in upholding our sovereignty. We insist the need to immediately junk EDCA and other lopsided agreements with US like VFA and MDT,” said Rosos.

“In his campaign for presidency, pres. Duterte has always been a vocal critic of US intervention. The youth expect him to uphold these pronouncements and stand for a Philippines free from foreign incursion and intervention,” Rosos ended.

Singing UP Naming Mahal hymn of the University of the Philippines.
UP Diliman 2016 Commencement Exercises 
PhilippineOnline Chronicles images photograph EddCastro. UP Campus, Quezon City. June 26, 2016

UP tops QS ranking for PH; 70th in Asia

Thursday, 30 June 2016 | Written by
Singing UP Naming Mahal hymn of the University of the Philippines.
UP Diliman 2016 Commencement Exercises 
PhilippineOnline Chronicles images photograph EddCastro. UP Campus, Quezon City. June 26, 2016
Singing UP Naming Mahal hymn of the University of the Philippines. UP Diliman 2016 Commencement Exercises  PhilippineOnline Chronicles images photograph EddCastro. UP Campus, Quezon City. June 26, 2016

Singing UP Naming Mahal hymn of the University of the Philippines.
UP Diliman 2016 Commencement Exercises 
PhilippineOnline Chronicles images photograph EddCastro. UP Campus, Quezon City. June 26, 2016

The University of the Philippines (UP) has retained its 70th place in the 2016 Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) University Rankings: Asia, making the national university once again the highest placed Philippine university in the annual regional ranking.

The ranking was based on 10 indicators: academic reputation, employer reputation, faculty-student ratio, citations per paper, papers per faculty, staff with PhD, proportions of international faculty and international students, and proportions of inbound and outbound exchange students.

The reputations were determined through a “global survey,” and research excellence (i.e. citations and papers of faculty) through Scopus data.

The National University of Singapore became the benchmark with 100 overall score. UP got a 58.4 overall score, buoyed up by its scores in:employer reputation, 87.9; academic reputation, 74.8; and faculty-student ratio, 69.2.

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QS used UP Diliman data in ranking UP.

In 2015, UP was the only Philippine university in the ranking’s top 100. This year, Ateneo de Manila moved up from 114th to 99th. Its overall score is 47.8, scoring highest in: employer reputation, 82.4; academic reputation, 59.1; and faculty-student ratio, 55.4.

Six other Philippine universities figured in QS University Rankings: Asia’s 350 top universities for 2016. De La Salle University is ranked 143rd with its overall score of 38.6; while University of Santo Tomas is 157th with 36.8. Ateneo de Davao University, Silliman University, and Xavier University figured in the 250-300 rankings; with the University of San Carlos, in the 300-350 rankings.

The QS University Rankings: Asia is an extension of QS global tables, which it uses for its World University Rankings involving more than 800 universities. In the latter, UP was 401st in 2015; although it fared better in terms of subject areas. UP was 101st in English Language and Literature; 151st in Agriculture and Forestry, and Modern Languages; 234th in Social Sciences and Management; 272nd in Arts and Humanities; and 301st in Medicine. (UP)

[FULL TEXT] Inaugural Address of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte

Thursday, 30 June 2016 | Written by

Inaugural Address of the President of the Philippines

Rizal Hall, Malacañan Palace

President Fidel Ramos, Sir, salamat po sa tulong mo making me President; President Joseph Ejercito Estrada; Senate President Franklin Drilon and the members of the Senate; Speaker Feliciano Belmonte and the members of the House of Representatives; Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno and Associate Justices of the Supreme Court; His Excellency Guiseppe Pinto and the members of the Diplomatic Corps; incoming members of the Cabinet; fellow workers in government; my fellow countrymen.

No leader, however strong, can succeed at anything of national importance or significance unless he has the support and cooperation of the people he is tasked to lead and sworn to serve.

It is the people from whom democratic governments draw strength and this administration is no exception. That is why we have to listen to the murmurings of the people, feel their pulse, supply their needs and fortify their faith and trust in us whom they elected to public office.

There are many amongst us who advance the assessment that the problems that bedevil our country today which need to be addressed with urgency, are corruption, both in the high and low echelons of government, criminality in the streets, and the rampant sale of illegal drugs in all strata of Philippine society and the breakdown of law and order. True, but not absolutely so. For I see these ills as mere symptoms of a virulent social disease that creeps and cuts into the moral fiber of Philippine society. I sense a problem deeper and more serious than any of those mentioned or all of them put together. But of course, it is not to say that we will ignore them because they have to be stopped by all means that the law allows.

Erosion of faith and trust in government – that is the real problem that confronts us. Resulting therefrom, I see the erosion of the people’s trust in our country’s leaders; the erosion of faith in our judicial system; the erosion of confidence in the capacity of our public servants to make the people’s lives better, safer and healthier.

Indeed ours is a problem that dampens the human spirit. But all is not lost.

I know that there are those who do not approve of my methods of fighting criminality, the sale and use of illegal drugs and corruption. They say that my methods are unorthodox and verge on the illegal. In response let me say this:

I have seen how corruption bled the government of funds, which were allocated for the use in uplifting the poor from the mire that they are in.

I have seen how illegal drugs destroyed individuals and ruined family relationships.

I have seen how criminality, by means all foul, snatched from the innocent and the unsuspecting, the years and years of accumulated savings. Years of toil and then, suddenly, they are back to where they started.

Look at this from that perspective and tell me that I am wrong.

In this fight, I ask Congress and the Commission on Human Rights and all others who are similarly situated to allow us a level of governance that is consistent to our mandate. The fight will be relentless and it will be sustained.

As a lawyer and a former prosecutor, I know the limits of the power and authority of the president.  I know what is legal and what is not.

My adherence to due process and the rule of law is uncompromising.

You mind your work and I will mind mine.

“Malasakit;” “Tunay na Pagbabago; Tinud-anay (real) nga Kausaban(change)” – these are words which catapulted me to the presidency. These slogans were conceptualized not for the sole purpose of securing the votes of the electorate.  “Tinud-anay nga kabag-uhan (real change). Mao kana ang tumong sa atong pang-gobyerno (this is the direction of our government).”

Far from that. These were battle cries articulated by me in behalf of the people hungry for genuine and meaningful change. But the change, if it is to be permanent and significant, must start with us and in us.

To borrow the language of F. Sionil Jose, we have become our own worst enemies. And we must have the courage and the will to change ourselves.

Love of country, subordination of personal interests to the common good, concern and care for the helpless and the impoverished – these are among the lost and faded values that we seek to recover and revitalize as we commence our journey towards a better Philippines. The ride will be rough. But come and join me just the same. Together, shoulder to shoulder, let us take the first wobbly steps in this quest.

There are two quotations from revered figures that shall serve as the foundation upon which this administration shall be built.

“The test of government is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide for those who have little.”

–  Franklin Delano Roosevelt

And from (Abraham) Lincoln I draw this expression:

“You cannot strengthen the weak by

weakening the strong; You cannot help

the poor by discouraging the rich; You

cannot help the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer; You cannot further the brotherhood by inciting class hatred among men.”

My economic and financial, political policies are contained in those quotations, though couched in general terms. Read between the lines. I need not go into specifics now. They shall be supplied to you in due time.

However, there are certain policies and specifics of which cannot wait for tomorrow to be announced.

Therefore, I direct all department secretaries and the heads of agencies to reduce requirements and the processing time of all applications, from the submission to the release. I order all department secretaries and heads of agencies to remove redundant requirements and compliance with one department or agency, shall be accepted as sufficient for all.

I order all department secretaries and heads of agencies to refrain from changing and bending the rules government contracts, transactions and projects already approved and awaiting implementation. Changing the rules when the game is on-going is wrong.

I abhor secrecy and instead advocate transparency in all government contracts, projects and business transactions from submission of proposals to negotiation to perfection and finally, to consummation.

Do them and we will work together. Do not do them, we will part sooner than later.

On the international front and community of nations, let me reiterate that the Republic of the Philippines will honor treaties and international obligations.

On the domestic front, my administration is committed to implement all signed peace agreements in step with constitutional and legal reforms.

I am elated by the expression of unity among our Moro brothers and leaders, and the response of everyone else to my call for peace.

I look forward to the participation of all other stakeholders, particularly our indigenous peoples, to ensure inclusivity in the peace process.

Let me remind in the end of this talk, that I was elected to the presidency to serve the entire country. I was not elected to serve the interests of any one person or any group or any one class. I serve every one and not only one.

That is why I have adapted as an article of faith, the following lines written by someone whose name I could no longer recall. He said:

“I have no friends to serve, I have no enemies to harm.”

Prescinding therefrom, I now ask everyone, and I mean everyone, to join me as we embark on this crusade for a better and brighter tomorrow.

But before I end, let me express the nations, on behalf of the people, our condolences to the Republic of Turkey of what has happened in the place. We offer our deepest condolences.

Why am I here? Hindi kasali ito diyan. The past tense was, I am here because I love my country and I love the people of the Philippines. I am here, why? Because I am ready to start my work for the nation.

Thank you and good afternoon.

 

National government budget surplus at P55B in April 2016

Thursday, 30 June 2016 | Written by

The national government posted a surplus of P55.0 in April 2016 on the back of strong revenue collections, bringing the year-to-date deficit down

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to P57.5 billion. Net of interest payments, the national government’s primary balance buycialisonline-treated.com for January-April 2016 stood at a surplus of P59.9 billion. April 2016 surplus stood at P69.8 billion.

National government revenues for the month amounted to P246.6 billion, 18% or P37.5 billion higher than recorded in April 2015, while expenditures totaled can you buy viagra without a prescription P191.6 billion, 22% or P35.1 billion can you buy viagra over the counter wider than year-ago figures.

Year-to-date, total revenues rose 7% year-on-year, amounting to P725.6 billion, while expenditures expanded 19% to reach P783.1 billion.

Finance Secretary Cesar V. Purisima said, “I am pleased to report a strong finish on both the revenue and expenditure sides of the Republic’s balance sheet. Consistently solid fiscal performance has put the nation on its firmest fiscal footing in history. The aggressive expansion of fiscal space in a span of 6 years has also funded the most intensive amount of investment the country has seen–fuel for Asia’s bright star to keep burning bright in these challenging times. I am highly confident that the next administration’s economic team has what it takes to improve and build on our gains moving forward.

In a volatile world flirting with crisis after crisis, I believe the Philippines has worked and earned the right to be defiantly optimistic.”

The Bureau of Internal Revenue collected P177.7 billion for the month, up by 10% or P16.9 billion year-on-year. Collections stood at P507.8 billion for January-April 2016, expanding rx express pharmacy 9% on-year.

Meanwhile, as collections on oil for the first four months of 2016 continued to shrink by 14% on the back of lower oil prices, the Bureau of Customs (BOC) more than made up for it in robust non-oil collections growth of 5.7% for the 4-month period and 21.6% cialis for sale online just for the month of April. This caused the BOC to collect P32.7 billion for the month of April, a 16% jump from year-ago figures to haul a total of P123.2 billion for January-April 2016, reflecting a 2% growth.

The Bureau of the Treasury (BTr) raised P16.4 billion for the month, 142% higher year-on-year, and P52.4 billion in total for the January-April period, reflecting a 7% increase year-on-year. Interest payments amounted to P14.8 billion for April 2016, lower by 6%, and P117.4 billion for the first four months of the year. Interest payments accounted for 15% of expenditures for January-April 2016, down from 18% posted a year ago.

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