LP senators deny hand on alleged ouster plot vs. PRRD

admin   •   October 5, 2017   •   3929

IMAGE_UNTV_NEWS_100517_OUST DUTERTE

MANILA, Philippines — Senators allied with the Liberal Party (LP) have once again denied having plans to oust President Rodrigo Duterte.

According to LP President Sen. Francis Pangilinan, the president just wants to divert the public’s attention away from the issues he is facing.

“Ang concern natin dito ay ang conspiracy na nauwi sa pagpapalusot ng P6.5 billion na shabu sa BOC kasabwat ang mga drug syndicate. Ang conspiracy na iyon ang dapat ipinapaliwanag ng gobyerno,” said Pangilinan.

(Our concern is the conspiracy that resulted in the entry of the P6.5 billion worth of shabu at the BOC in conspiracy with drug syndicates. And that conspiracy must be explained by the government.)

For Sen. Bam Aquino, Liberal Party members have nothing to do with any effort to oust the president, adding that Duterte may just be making up the ouster plot issue.

“Gaya ng kaniyang mga paratang sa bank account ni Senator Trillanes, he probably also made that up. Gawa-gawa lang po iyan. Hindi po totoo (Just like with the bank account of Senator Trillanes, he probably also made that up.  It’s just made up. These are not true.),” he said.

Aquino also noted that criticisms against members of the opposition are not a good sign.

“Secretary Aguirre has even created a group against what he calls the enemies of the state, including what he calls the ‘yellowtards’. This is already a political persecution,” said the senator.

Meanwhile, according to the former chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and now senator, Panfilo Lacson, any plot to oust the president is impossible to succeed.

“Pwedeng may nag-iisip, pero will they succeed? Ang 82% na approval at trust rating ng Pangulo, mukhang mahirap mangyari ang ma-oust siya through either people power or… military naman, unlikely because he’s so close with the military,” said Lacson.

(It’s possible that someone is thinking about it, but will they succeed? With the 82% approval and trust rating of the president, it would be difficult to oust him through people power or…military is unlikely to do that because he’s so close to the military.)

Solicitor General Jose Calida initially divulged that some groups and personalities are colluding to destabilize the president. — Nel Maribojoc | UNTV News & Rescue

Roque to ask Duterte on possibility of voluntarily disclosing SALN

Robie de Guzman   •   October 29, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque on Thursday said he will ask President Rodrigo Duterte if he is willing to voluntarily release his statement of assets, liabilities, and net worth (SALN) following the strict rules imposed by the Ombudsman on the access to the wealth declaration of officials.

Roque said the president’s office is just following the guidelines issued by the Ombudsman.

“Mag-uusap po kami ng ating president at para matapos na po itong issue na ito, ay tatanungin ko po baka naman po magbigay ng permiso ang president para isapubliko ang kaniyang SALN,” he said.

The Ombudsman recently issued a memorandum circular restricting access to the SALN of public officials.

The circular states that a copy of a public official’s SALN may only be released if the requestor is an authorized representative of the declarant or the person who filed the document; if there is a court order in relation to a pending case, and if the request is made by the Ombudsman’s field investigation units.

Prior to the issuance of the circular, Roque said Duterte had released his SALN yearly.

“Wala pong itinatago ang ating president, bago po maglabas ng ganitong guidelines ang Ombdusman, taon-taon naman po inilalabas ng president ang kaniyang SALN,” he said.

The question of whether Duterte will voluntarily publicize his own net worth resurfaced after the 2019 SALN of 24 senators were released by the Senate on Thursday. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

Proposed order for price cap on COVID-19 tests awaiting Duterte decision – Palace

Robie de Guzman   •   October 29, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – A proposed executive order that will impose a price cap on coronavirus disease (COVID-19) tests is now awaiting the signature of President Rodrigo Duterte, Malacañang said Thursday.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the Department of Health’s (DOH) Technical Working Group (TWG) submitted the proposal after completing its review on the recommended price cap.

Roque refused to divulge the recommended price ceiling on coronavirus testing in private hospitals and laboratories but he expressed optimism that the president will approve the proposal.

“Hintayin po muna natin ang desisyon ng president. Why is that? Kasi yung iba naman, napakataas ng sinisingil, alam naman natin, pwedeng mas mura yang testing na yan,” he said in a televised briefing.

Roque said the proposal seeks to make COVID-19 testing affordable and could help boost the government’s contact tracing and mass testing efforts.

“Para mas maging affordable ang testing sa ating mga kababayan ng sa gayong paraan ay mas maraming matetesting,” he said.

The DOH earlier recommended the placing of a price ceiling after observing differences in the COVID-19 testing cost in various laboratories and hospitals in the country. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

Guevarra on order to probe corruption in entire gov’t: ‘Toughest task from Duterte’

Robie de Guzman   •   October 27, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Department of Justice (DOJ) Secretary Menardo Guevarra on Tuesday said that the order for him to conduct a government-wide probe of corruption is his “toughest” assignment ever received from President Rodrigo Duterte.

In a taped speech aired on Tuesday morning, Duterte directed the DOJ to expand the role of its task force, which probed the alleged anomalies in the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth), to cover the entire government.

He also authorized the DOJ to decide on which allegation to investigate taking into consideration the gravity thereof and their impact on the delivery of government service.

The chief executive also granted DOJ the power to create as many panels as necessary and direct other government agencies to be part of such committees.

Duterte said his directive will remain in effect until the end of his term on June 30, 2022 unless sooner lifted or revoked.

“Apart from my usual responsibilities as SOJ, this new assignment is the toughest I have ever received from the President,” Guevarra said in a message to reporters.

“I will need all the support and cooperation of the entire government machinery to achieve this singular objective of substantially reducing corruption in government,” he added.

Considering the scope of the task, Guevarra said he will first determine the overall strategy and the order of priorities as well as the setting up of the expanded anti-corruption task force.

“Tentatively, I am thinking of creating several strike forces that will simultaneously attack various corruption-prone agencies,” he said.

Guevarra also said that he intends to immediately focus on the organizational set-up and mechanism that will carry out the president’s directive.

The Justice Secretary added that it would also help if government workers and other people would come forward to provide the task force with the necessary information to uncover corrupt activities and identify perpetrators.

“The new and expanded anti-corruption task force will take it from there,” he said.

The DOJ already leads an inter-agency task force, formed in August, that probed alleged corruption in the PhilHealth which resulted in the filing of complaints against several officials, including former PhilHealth president Ricardo Morales. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Dante Amento)

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