China holds ‘serious’ investigation on sea collision in Recto Bank

Marje Pelayo   •   June 14, 2019   •   2443

The Chinese government is conducting its own investigation on the sea collision that involved Chinese crewmen abandoning Filipino fishermen after the former hit the latter’s fishing boat in the evening of June 9 in Recto Bank in the West Philippine Sea.

Chinese Ambassador Zhao Jianhua in a text message to Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the issue “is being thoroughly and seriously investigated.”

“We share your concerns about fishermen,” Zhao said.

“If it were true that it was a Chinese fishing boat which did it, they would be duly educated and punished for their irresponsible behavior. Incidents happen even in the best-regulated family,” he added.

The Chinese Ambassador also hopes that the incident will be held in a ‘proper context’.

Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Geng Shuang, meanwhile, said what happened was just ‘an ordinary maritime accident’.

He acknowledged, however, that abandoning a person in dire need of rescue is unacceptable.

“If the relevant situation turns out to be true, irrespective of which country the perpetrators come from, abandoning (others) should be condemned,” he said.

“China will continue to investigate this incident based on its responsible attitude towards the physical safety and safety of property of the people of both countries and will work with the Philippine side to properly handle,” he concluded.

Duterte to seek doctor’s advice on travel to APEC in Chile – Malacañang

Marje Pelayo   •   October 30, 2019

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte joins other leaders during the plenary session of the 16th Annual Meeting of the Valdai Discussion Club at the Polyana 1389 Hotel in Sochi, Russia on October 3, 2019. RICHARD MADELO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang confirmed that President Rodrigo Duterte will consult with his doctor regarding his travel to Chile for the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders’ Summit.

According to Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said it is not yet certain if the Chief Executive will push through with the said business trip on November 16 to 17.

Meanwhile, Panelo assured the President’s attendance in the 35th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit in Thailand this weekend.

Depende kasi iyan sa consultation niya sa doktor niya, (It depends on his consultation with his doctor,)” Panelo said.

“Kung ayaw siya pagbiyahehin ng doktor niya, bakit naman siya magbibiyahe, (If the [doctor] says no, why will he go?),” he added. – MNP (with reports from Rosalie Coz)

Challenge denied: No 6-month commute challenge for Panelo

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 14, 2019

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo did not accept the challenge of a commuter group to continue to the commute challenge for six months.

In a press briefing on Monday (October 14), Panelo said there is no need to accept the challenge of Kongreso ng Mananakay because everyone experiences heavy traffic, whether you are commuting or in a private vehicle.

“Kahit hindi ka sumakay doon, mararanasan mo pa rin dahil araw-araw nakikita mo iyon hindi na kailangang tumanggap ng anong paghamon (Even if you do not commute, you can still experience [traffic] because you can see it everyday without accepting any challenges),” Panelo said.

READ: Panelo on commuting to work: It’s nothing new

Panelo also challenged to provide suggestions to solve the traffic crisis instead of criticizing the government.

“Kaya ko lang naman pinagbigyan sila para ipamukha sa kanila na hindi totoo iyong hindi namin nararanasan (The only reason I accepted their challenge was to belie their claims that we do not experience [the crisis]),” Panelo added.—AAC (with reports from Rosalie Coz)

Panelo: There is no transportation crisis, only traffic crisis

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 11, 2019

A jeepney, a popular and uniquely Filipino mode of mass transport, maneuvers amid heavy traffic in Makati city, south of Manila, Philippines. EPA-EFE/FRANCIS R. MALASIG

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said Metro Manila is experiencing a traffic crisis and not a transportation crisis.

After accomplishing the commute challenge on Friday (October 11), Panelo reiterated his claim that there is no mass transportation crisis in Metro Manila. However, he said Metro Manila is facing a traffic crisis.

READ: Panelo on commuting to work: It’s nothing new

“Mayroong traffic crisis, hindi transportation crisis. When you say transportation crisis, wala kang sinasakyan, paralyzed ang buong traffic (There is a traffic crisis, not transportation crisis. When you say transportation crisis, there would be no transportation available, the whole traffic would be paralyzed),” he said during a press briefing.

The Palace official added that everyone is experiencing heavy traffic whether you commute or not. He also said that Filipinos can adapt to difficult situations.

“Tayong mga Pilipino (We Filipinos), we’re very creative. May problema tayo, hindi tayo nagngangangawa na pababayaan natin na lamunin tayo ng problema (we have problems but we do not whine and let our problems overpower us),” according to Panelo.

Panelo also mentioned there is a need for improvement in the infrastructure of the country.

“Tama iyong iniisip ni presidente, ang problema kasi sa atin, iyong infrastructure natin, we’re 20 years behind. So that’s why iyong kaniyang Build Build Build, iyon ang solution doon (The president was right, the problem is our infrastructure, we’re 20 years behind. So that’s why the Build Build Build [program] is the solution),” he said.

Meanwhile, Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) Secretary-General Renato Reyes Jr. said the commute challenge aims to call attention to the situation of transportation.

“Ang punto magkaroon ng empathy, malasakit at kilalanin na malala ang problema (The point is to have empathy and acknowledge the worsening problem). It is a mass transport crisis,” Reyes said.—AAC (with reports from Rosalie Coz and Grace Casin)

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