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Malacañang opposes FB’s choice of fact checkers

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Monday, April 16th, 2018


Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a statement that it will become a problem because what he calls as Facebook’s “police of the truth” are “sometimes partisan.”

MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang wants to meet with Facebook over its choice of fact checkers specifically for Filipino accounts on the social media platform.

Facebook has named controversial social news network, Rappler and another news outlet, Vera Files, as third-party fact-checkers in a campaign to curb the proliferation of fake news on Facebook accounts of Filipino users.

In a statement posted on the website of the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Undersecretary Lorraine Badoy said, “efforts are underway for both the PCOO and Facebook to sit across the table and discuss and hopefully, reach agreements” to get a “shared goal of responsible and intelligent use of social media.”

Last week, a number of Duterte supporters complained after Facebook blocked their accounts.

Meanwhile, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said it will become a problem because what he calls as Facebook’s “police of the truth” are “sometimes partisan.”

“I commiserate with those who object with the selection of Rappler and Vera files because we know where they stand in the political spectrum,” he said.

Roque is encouraging all supporters of the administration to use the platform itself to actively voice out their protests against Facebook’s choice of fact checkers.

“The users of Facebook should make known their wishes to Facebook itself that there should be a more partial arbiter of the truth,” Roque concluded. — Marje Navarro –Pelayo | UNTV News & Rescue

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Malacañang: Duterte opposes proposal to postpone 2019 polls

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Thursday, July 19th, 2018


A voter shading his ballot


MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte will not support any motion seeking to defer the upcoming elections, according to Malacañang.

In a press briefing earlier, Presidential Spokesperson Secretary Harry Roque said that the chief executive is cold towards the bid to cancel the national elections in 2019 to give way for the deliberations on the proposed charter change.

Roque added that he directly asked the president on his thoughts on the issue recently floated by House Leader Pantaleon Alvarez, who believed that this would help lawmakers to focus more on the proposal to rewrite the Constitution.

“I and President Duterte talked about this. I will quote the president, ‘I will not have any hand in that, he is really against the so-called no elections scenario for charter-change’,” the spokesman said.

According to Roque, the chief executive even directed the Consultative Committee (ConCom) which drafted the federal charter to include in the transitory provisions the conduct of an election of the transition president and vice president; and to ban president Duterte and Vice President Leni Robredo from running for any public position in may 2022.

Roque noted that through this action, President Duterte wants himself to be an example for his allies.

“He has asked the Consultative Committee to include the provision that would ensure that he will not benefit from charter change. He would like to see all his allies do the same thing, not to benefit from charter change,” Roque said.

Meanwhile, the Palace official said that the administration is not concerned about VP Robredo’s term of office in response to allegations that the government is pushing for federalism to cut short the term of the vice president.

“We are not giving much important to the career of the vice president. It is her concern. Our main concern is the leadership of president Duterte,” Roque said. — Rosalie Coz | UNTV News & Rescue

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Aussie nun Patricia Fox ‘not yet off the hook’ – Malacañang

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Tuesday, June 19th, 2018

Australian missionary Sister Patricia Fox


MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang maintained on Tuesday, June 19, that Australian missionary nun, Patricia Fox could still face deportation.

This is despite the justice department’s nullification of the order that forfeited her visa.

“So uulitin ko po she is not off the hook. Ongoing po ang deportation proceedings. Antayin po natin ang decision ng CID (Commission on Immigration and Deportation) on whether or not sumapi sa pulitika itong si Sister Fox,” Presidential Spokesperson Secretary Harry Roque said.

(I will repeat: she is not off the hook. Deportation proceedings are ongoing. Let us wait for the decision of the CID on whether or not Sister Fox participated in political activities.)

Roque said Fox’s deportation will push through if deportation proceedings conclude that she indeed joined political activities in the country which is a violation of Bureau of Immigration (BI) regulations. — Rosalie Coz | UNTV News & Rescue

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Malacañang on fishing rights in Scarborough Shoal: ‘We do not concede’

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Thursday, June 14th, 2018



Secretary Harry Roque with three of the fishermen who had encounters with the Chinese coast guard


MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang called the incidents in Scarborough Shoal between Filipino fishermen and some Chinese coast guard, not a barter trade but a form of “fish thievery.”

Filipino fishermen reported that some members of the Chinese Coast Guard have been taking the best of their catch in exchange for noodles and drinking water.

“So for lack of a better word, let’s call it ‘pangongotong’ in Tagalog, which is fish thievery. I have never really addressed it as a barter,” said Presidential Spokesperson Secretary Harry Roque.

Malacañang in previous interviews said the incident has already been reported to China, and which the latter assured is being investigated.

For the local government of Masinloc, Zambales, fishermen seem to pay China a toll-fee for fishing in Panatag Shoal which belongs to the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of the Philippines.

“Iyon nga parang may toll-fee sa gitna ng karagatan. Ang mga Masinlokenyos po ay mga mababait na tao iyan. Ayaw po nila ng gulo. Ayaw nila makiaway kaya okay na lang na magbigay sila kaysa bawalan po sila,” said Mayor Arsenia Lim of Masinloc, Zambales.

Following the incident, the local government of Masinloc is appealing to President Rodrigo Duterte to make sure Filipino fishermen can still fish freely and safely in Panatag Shoal.

Meanwhile, Malacañang stands firm that the Philippines has the sovereign rights over Scarborough Shoal and that the territory is not owned by China.

This is in reaction to the statement of the  Chinese Foreign Ministry that they let Filipino fishermen fish in the area out of goodwill.

Asked if the Philippines concede fishing rights in Scarborough shoal, Roque firmly said, “We do not concede.” – Rosalie Coz / Marje Pelayo

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