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House Speaker confident joint session will approve proposed martial law extension

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Wednesday, December 13th, 2017

MANILA, Philippines — House Speaker Pantaleon Alvalez is confident that the Congress will approve the martial law extension in Mindanao.

Both houses of Congress are set to convene in a joint session, Wednesday, to study President Rodrigo Duterte’s request for a 1-year extension of martial law to be effective on January 1, 2018.

“For me being from Mindanao I don’t see any reason why they will not consider it,” Alvarez said.

The House Speaker said even if the war in Marawi has ended it doesn’t mean that the war of the government against the rebels has also ended.

“There are still movements. Many of their companions are still there. The extortion continues in the plantations, mining sites, contractors, and even in bus operators,” Alvarez said.

Albay Representative Edcel Lagman, on the other hand, said he will question this move to the Supreme Court because they believe that implementing it is against the Constitution.

“If we are going to read the Constitution it says ‘the extension of the declaration or promulgation.’ It does not refer to the extension of an extension,” Lagman said.

Former soldier and now Magdalo Rep. Gary Alejano said it will have a big impact on the soldiers.

“Continuous combat operation, kulang sa kagamitan (insufficient equipment), will lead to demoralization,” Alejano said.

Earlier Tuesday, the House conducted an all-member caucus in which they invited the heads of the Department of the Interior and Local Government and Department of National Defense, and Executive Secretary Salvador Mideialdea to shed light on the need to extend martial law in Mindanao. – Grace Casin | UNTV News & Rescue

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Lanao del Sur’s traditional opinion leaders want to see Marawi rehab plan

by UNTV   |   Posted on Thursday, March 1st, 2018

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte is given a briefing on the Bahay Pag-Asa Phase 2 by National HousinG Authority General Manager Marcelino Escalada Jr. during the inauguration at Brgy. Mipaga in Marawi City on February 28, 2018. KARL NORMAN ALONZO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines —Lanao del Sur Vice Gov. Mamintal Bombit Adiong called on the government’s planned rehabilitation of Marawi City.

“Unang-una meron tayong sinusunod na kultura ung mga traditional leaders natin. Gusto nila makita kung ano ba yung rehab plan kung maganda ba yan para sa mga Maranao o hindi,” said the official.

Vice Mayor Adiong added that this is to avoid any misunderstandings between the government and the Maranaos.

President Rodrigo Duterte, on the other hand, reiterated during his visit yesterday in Marawi City the government’s commitment to help rebuild the war-stricken city.

“Kaya naman sinabi ko sa inyo right after the war, rehabilitation will start immediately. You can see the sincerity of government. At least sa panahon ko maniwala kayo kasi Maranao ang presidente,” said the chief executive.

President Duterte visited Marawi to check the other location where internally displaced residents may relocate.

The chief executive also visited the location where the housing project for policemen and soldiers in Baloi, Lanao del Norte. — Joan Nano| UNTV News & Rescue






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President Duterte halts foreign marine exploration in Philippine Rise

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Wednesday, February 7th, 2018

MANILA, Philippines – Presidential spokesperson, Secretary Harry Roque has confirmed that President Rodrigo Duterte wants Filipino scientists to have an exclusive marine researching the Philippine Rise and ordered the cancellation of pending foreign applications for research.

The President himself raised the issue at last Monday’s Cabinet meeting.

Malacañang said this is to assert the sovereign rights of the country over the Philippine Rise.

“I confirm that the President ordered that henceforth, only Filipino scientists are allowed to do scientific research, lay submarine cables and explore and exploit natural resources in the Philippine Rise,” Roque said.

The government, however, clarified that the freedom of navigation in the area remains.

It also does not mention if the government plans to provide a budget to support the research of Filipino scientists in the extended continental shelf.

Malacañang also reported that currently, all scientific research of other counties in the area are already finished.

All in all, there have been 46 foreign research applications in the Philippine Rise from the year 2000, of which 28 were approved including the two applications from a Chinese foreign institution.

However, scientists of foreign institutions may still conduct research in the Philippine Rise if the National Security Council particularly National Security Adviser, Hermogenes Esperon permits it.

“Any foreign entity who wishes to conduct research can apply to the usual body and in addition, there must be personal approval of the National Security Adviser,” said Roque.

In his Facebook post, Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol said President Duterte gave a directive to the Department of National Defense to deploy ships as well as the Philippine Airforce to conduct flyovers and monitor the area.

Meanwhile, Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman said if Malacañang really ordered to stop the marine exploration of China in the Philippine Rise, the government must seize the data that the Chinese scientists were already able to gather.

“So that foreign country cannot use the same at the expense if the Philippines Security and Development,” Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman said.

Magdalo Partylist Rep. Gary Alejano, however, believes that marine research in the Philippine Rise must not be stopped but the government must be careful in giving permits to foreign institutions and organizations.

“It’s open for everybody like what DFA stated but when it comes to China, we should be careful because they have the history of grabbing our islands,” Magdalo Party-list Rep. Gary Alejano said. – Rosalie Coz | UNTV News & Rescue

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Brgy, SK elections to push through in May

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Wednesday, February 7th, 2018

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) assure that the long overdue barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections will finally push thru this year.

Comelec Spokesperson James Jimenez also assured that the ballots are ready as they will be using the same ones originally printed for the October 2017 slate.

Manual counting will be implemented in the election because it has a small scope.

“Close to 85% ready, the bulk really of preparations has to be the printing, and with the printing done, we just need to print the additional registrants,” Comelec Spokesperson James Jimenez said.

The DILG will also launch Matino, Mahusay at Maasahang Barangay and SK Officials campaign to disseminate information regarding the elections.

“Maglalabas din po kami ng mga posters na pwedeng ipaskil sa mga barangay para po maging giya para sa ating mga kababayan sa pagboto sa susunod na eleksyon,” DILG Communication & Public Affairs Asec. Jonathan Malaya said.

(We will also have posters put up in barangays as a guide for the public on how to vote in the next election.)

The DILG once again advises the public to be wise in voting candidates to avoid having corrupt barangay and SK officials.

The barangay and SK elections will be held on May 14, 2018 with a P6-billion budget. – Rajel Adora | UNTV News & Rescue

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