Opposition not surprised by Duterte axing Robredo from ICAD

Marje Pelayo   •   November 25, 2019   •   465

MANILA, Philippines – The recent dismissal of Vice President Leni Robredo from her position as co-chairperson of the Interagency Committee on Anti-Drugs (ICAD) drew flak from critics of the Duterte administration.

Senator Francis Pangilinan lambasted the Duterte administration for not keeping its word to the people.

He claimed the administration is being threatened by the vice president’s growing popularity.

“Malacañang did not just blink. Parang silang napuwing nang todo-todo. Umatras,” Pangilinan tweeted.

“Dahil sa takot at pangamba na lalo pang lumawak ang suporta kay VP Leni bunga ng mas maayos at higit na epektibong kampanya laban sa iligal na droga, agad-agad nilang tinanggal siya sa ICAD,” he added.

Senior Deputy Minority Leader Rep. Carlos Zarate, meanwhile, said Robredo’s dismissal was expected.

“The firing of VP Leni is bound to happen because the Duterte administration’s campaign against drugs is truly a sham,” Zarate said.

“From day one of her appointment up until she was fired, she was already a threat to the Duterte administration’s bloody yet fake drug campaign,” he added.

On the other hand, Albay First District Rep. Edcel Lagman said it was wrong of Robredo to take Duterte’s offer seriously, adding that the vice president should not have accepted the offer because it was a set up for her to fail.

“The mistake of Vice President Leni Robredo is that she took her role as anti-drugs czar very seriously while President Rodrigo Duterte considered her appointment as a flippant joke and an off-the-cuff reaction to her criticisms on his bloody war against drugs,” Lagman noted.

“From the very start, Robredo was set up to fail.” He added.

Senator Risa Hontiveros, meanwhile, accused the administration of covering up its incompetency in hosting the 30th South East Asian Games in the country.

“The timing of this decision is not surprising to me. I won’t be surprised if this is yet another attempt to draw public attention away from widespread anomalies & incompetent and embarrassing handling of the SEA Games,” Hontiveros said in a statement.

But Malacañang denied on Sunday (November 24) that Robredo’s dismissal was a move to divert public attention away from the failures in organizing the SEA Games.

“The SEA Games organizers have apologized. You cannot discount any delays, incident of non-transport or late checking-in given the fact that there are so many athletes coming in,” Panelo said.

He added that such circumstance cannot be avoided and was never intentional. MNP (with inputs from Harlene Delgado)

DILG reiterates: No mass gathering during 5th SONA

Aileen Cerrudo   •   July 24, 2020

The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has reiterated that mass gathering is still prohibited even during President Rodrigo Duterte’s 5th State of the Nation Address (SONA).

The reminder was issued following numerous requests made to the department from groups who want to conduct protest rallies during the President’s SONA on Monday (July 27).

In an advisory released by the DILG, the department reminded local government units (LGU) to prohibit mass gatherings, following the directive of the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID).

Meanwhile, the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) said they will strictly monitor and will apprehend anyone who will violate the IATF policies during SONA.

“Base sa instruction and guidelines na kapag may mag-rally doon na bawal at lalo na kapag walang permit at goes beyond the authorized number, aarestuhin talaga sila, (Based on the instruction and guidelines, if a group stages a rally without a permit and goes beyond the authorized number, they will be apprehended),” according to NCRPO Director PMGen. Debold Sinas. AAC (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

Hunger among families climbs to 20.9% in the past 3 months—SWS

Aileen Cerrudo   •   July 23, 2020

About 20.9%, , or an estimated 5.2 million Filipinos families experienced ‘involuntary hunger’ at least once in the past three months, according to the recent survey of the Social Weather Stations (SWS).

“Hunger in July 2020 was up by 4.2 points from 16.7% in May 2020, and by a total of 12.1 points from 8.8% in December 2019,” the SWS stated.

The SWS July 3-6, 2020 National Mobile Phone Survey showed that out of the 20.9% Filipino families, 15.8% or an estimate of 3.9 million families experienced ‘moderate hunger’. Meanwhile, the remaining 5.1% or an estimate of 1.3 million families experienced ‘severe hunger’.

The SWS defined “moderate hunger” as those who experienced hunger “only once” or “a few times” in the last three months. Meanwhile, severe hunger refers to those who experienced it “often” or “always” in the last three months.

The SWS July 3-6, 2020 National Mobile Phone Survey was a probability-based survey conducted using mobile phone and computer-assisted telephone interviews (CATI) of 1,555 adult Filipinos. AAC

Duterte to discuss COVID-19 recovery roadmap in 5th SONA

Aileen Cerrudo   •   July 22, 2020

President Rodrigo Duterte will discuss the government’s roadmap for the country’s recovery from the effects of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, in his 5th State of the Nation Address (SONA) on July 27.

“By theme, well, I think it would be obvious that he would be talking about COVID-19, impact on the country and steps taken to deal with COVD-19 at tsaka kung paano tayo makakabangon sa aberya at sigalot na nagresulta dahil sa COVID,according to Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque.

As of Tuesday (July 21), the Philippines has recorded a total of 70,764 confirmed cases, with 23,281 recoveries and 1,837 COVID-19 deaths.

Roque also said the President will also discuss how to boost the country’s economy amid the pandemic.

Meanwhile, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said to expect the 5th SONA to be different since only a limited number of government officials will be allowed to physically attend. Nograles also reiterated the importance of the President’s 5th SONA.

“Such a report is more important now, more than ever, as government works to chart a safe course for our country as it navigates through unfamiliar and uncertain times, as it works to recoup the gains we have made in the President’s first three and a half years,” he said. AAC (with reports from Rosalie Coz)

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