Category Archives: Senate

Conspiracy in PH purchase of dengvaxia?


PHILIPPINE Senator Richard J. Gordon on Wednesday said he sees “conspiracy” in the government’s procurement of P3.5-billion Dengvaxia vaccines from French pharmaceutical company Sanofi Pasteur because the budget for the procurement of the vaccine was not even part of the General Appropriations Act (GAA) since there was no assurance yet that the vaccine was safe to be administered.
He said he was also astounded by the undue speed in the procurement process for the Dengvaxia Vaccine, the administration of which to at least 830,000 people is now turning into the country’s major health nightmare.

Complaint vs PH senator filed

PHILIPPINE Senator Richard J. Gordon filed on Monday night an ethics complaint against Senator Antonio Trillanes IV over his repeated display of unparliamentary conducts and disorderly behavior, the latest of which was exhibited during last Thursday’s hearing on the smuggling of P6.4-billion worth of shabu (methamphetamine hydrochloride) from China.
Gordon, chair of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee which is conducting the investigation on the shabu shipment, requested the Senate Committee on Ethics and Privileges to conduct an investigation to the end of penalizing Trillanes accordingly.

PH Senate ratifies Paris Agreement

By: Oscar Omer Almenario
The Senate adopted a resolution today concurring in the Accession to the Paris Agreement. The agreement seeks to limit the average global temperature to “well below two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.”
Adopted was Senate Resolution 320. Senator Loren Legarda, chair of the Senate Subcommittee on the Paris Agreement under the Committee on Foreign Relations, said the Philippines’ ratification of the agreement would send a strong signal of the country’s continuing commitment to work with the rest of the world in ensuring the survival of mankind.
“Our nation bears the brunt of climate change even if we are among those who contributed the least to the crisis,” Legarda said.

PH leader: Criminals have no humanity

By: Oscar Omer Almenario
PHILIPPINE President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday said criminals have no humanity.
The President made the statement during an interview in Cebu City in response to a report by Human Rights Watch (HRW) which said drug-related killings may be considered crimes against humanity.
“If you kill criminals, it is not a crime against humanity. The criminals have no humanity,” Duterte said after the groundbreaking ceremony for the Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway.
He likewise said those who were killed in legitimate government operations were the ones who fought back against law enforcers.

Rome to witness PH-NDF bilateral ceasefire

By: Omer Oscar Almenario
DESPITE the complexities in the ongoing peace negotiations between the Philippine government and communist rebels, Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Delfin Lorenzana expressed confidence a bilateral ceasefire will be signed during the talks in Rome, Italy next week.
The DND chief added some of his people and those from the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief-of-staff Gen. Eduardo Año met with Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Secretary Jesus Dureza at the OPAPP headquarters in Pasig City, on what inputs they want to be placed in the agreement.
“What they are going to accomplish in Rome is to discuss the terms of a bilateral ceasefire agreement. That’s why some of my people at DND went to OPAPP. Gen. Año met with Sec. Dureza at OPAPP because they asked us what inputs do we want to be place into this agreement,” Lorenzana said.

PH Senate to probe 2016 killings

By: Omer Oscar Almenario
PHILIPPINE Senator Richard J. Gordon is considering conducting an inquiry into the reasons for law enforcers being slow in investigating the killings, particularly those committed in Caloocan City during the last few days of 2016.
Gordon, chair of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee, pointed out that the committee can conduct a motu proprio investigation when misfeasance, malfeasance or non-feasance is committed.
“I am contemplating conducting an investigation into these recent killings. The Blue Ribbon Committee can conduct a motu proprio inquiry into these killings. What is taking the police so long to finish the investigations? If they are not conducting an investigation then they are not doing their job. That is non-feasance. If they did their job but did not do it properly, that is malfeasance,” he said.

PH President: I am at your service

“I do not have an obligation to please everybody or to please one person. But if you’re a Filipino, I am at your service because I work for you. I receive my keep for the day from the pocket of the people,” Philippine President Rodrigo Roa Duterte said.
President Duterte also reiterated his stand on the peaceful settlement of disputes and vowed to pursue an independent foreign policy.

PH senators support war on drugs

WHILE a lady lawmaker is calling on the Philippine National Police (PNP) to conduct an investigation into the killing of a four-year-old girl during a police drug bust, Sen.
Juan Miguel Zubiri is in favour of increasing the 2017 budget of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), specifically for capital outlay such as purchase of firearms – long and short, protective gear like vests, helmets, night-vision goggles, and vehicles.
Zubiri will support to increase PDEA’s budget from P1,014,236,000.00 to P1,217,521,000.00, or at 2.04% increase.
He also recommends increasing the budget for intelligence gathering and operations. He called on the PDEA “to hire more agents as stated in PDEA’s mandate wherein an anti-drugs team should be formed on a per province and city basis nationwide, not like the current practice of assigning a team per region only.”

P500M drug money baffles PH senator

THE Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) and other law enforcement agencies should attack the financial infrastructure of drug trafficking syndicates to suppress their supply and distribution operations, Philippine Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri said Thursday.
“We are counting on the AMLC in particular to quickly spot and seize suspected drug money flowing through our banks, and to forcefully prosecute cases of money laundering by traffickers,” Zubiri said, adding that regulators should disabuse the perception that they have been inadequate in thwarting the criminal use of banks by drug traffickers.
The senator singled out the case of suspected drug lord Rolando “Kerwin” Espinosa Jr., who is now on the run.
Espinosa was supposedly able to pay out more than P500 million worth of checks from eight bank accounts between 2014 to June 2016, with the bulk of the money apparently going to his alleged “protectors” in the criminal justice system, according to the Philippine National Police (PNP).

PH leader to meet Ban Ki Moon

PRESIDENTIAL spokesperson Ernesto Abella dismissed speculations that Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte refused to meet United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, saying “There was nothing personal and it should not be given negative connotation”.
Abella’s statement came in reaction to accusations that President Duterte refused to meet Mr. Ban when he goes to Laos PDR (People’s Democratic Republic) during the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit next week.
“It was a matter of scheduling,” Abella told reporters in a press conference Friday at the Royal Mandaya Hotel in Davao City. Abella emphasized on the tight schedule of the President, who could no longer find ample time for Mr. Ban.
He said the President was scheduled to meet with 11 heads of states and Mr. Ban’s request for appointment came late.
The President was accused of rejecting a meeting with the UN head after a UN rapporteur strongly criticized his anti-drug war. Mr. Duterte lambasted the UN official for lack of diplomatic protocol, indicating lack of respect to a leader of a sovereign state.