[Blueboard] Newsbriefs 3 October 2007 Morning

Simbahang Lingkod ng Bayan slb at admu.edu.ph
Wed Oct 3 10:47:12 PHT 2007

Newsbriefs 3 October 2007 Morning

Simbahang Lingkod ng Bayan



Bishops to Abalos: Tell all, come clean (www.gmanews.tv)

Tell all, come clean.

This in a nutshell was the advice of senior Catholic bishops to Benjamin Abalos Sr who recently resigned as chairman of the Commission on Elections amid allegations that he was involved in the alleged anomaly in the $329.48-million National Broadband Network project with China's Zhong Xing Telecommunications Equipment (ZTE) Corp. 

Also, the bishops said anyone who would be tapped to replace Abalos must learn from the latter's experience and "value transparency and accountability."


Jockeying for top Comelec post starts (www.philstar.com) 

With the sudden resignation of Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Benjamin Abalos, civil society groups expect intense jockeying for his replacement in the coming days.

"We expect that there would be lobbying and that it could be intense. And with his resignation, the lobbying will come sooner than expected," Vincent Lazatin, executive director of the Transparency and Accountability Network (TAN), said.

But Malacañang said it's in no hurry to fill up existing and looming vacancies at the Comelec amid mounting calls for President Arroyo to revamp the poll body to redeem its tarnished image.

GMA scraps ZTE deal (www.philstar.com)

SHANGHAI (via PLDT) - President Arroyo personally conveyed to Chinese President Hu Jintao yesterday her decision to scrap the national broadband network (NBN) contract with Chinese firm ZTE Corp. during a brief meeting between the two world leaders here.

Press Secretary Ignacio Bunye told reporters that it was Mrs. Arroyo who initiated discussions on the NBN issue during their 30-minute bilateral discussion at the Xi Jiao Guesthouse in Shanghai.

After a brief exchange of pleasantries over Mrs. Arroyo's attendance at the Shanghai Special Olympics, Bunye said the President started relaying the Philippines' recognition of China as an important partner. 

(UPDATE) Senate to continue with ZTE hearings--Cayetano (INQUIRER.net)

MANILA, Philippines-- (UPDATE) Despite a report from Shanghai that the contentious $329-million deal with China's ZTE Corp. will not push through, the Senate hearings on the arrangement on the national broadband network (NBN) project will.

"Tuloy investigation [The investigation will proceed]. Hearings to be scheduled. Wala this week [None this week]. We may call hearing during the break," Senator Alan Peter Cayetano, chairman of the Senate committee on accountability of public officers & investigations (the blue ribbon), said in a text message.


Investors ignoring political noise - Teves (www.philstar.com) 

Finance Secretary Margarito Teves assured the people yesterday that foreign investors have ignored the political noise brought about by the controversial $329-million national broadband network (NBN) contract of the government and the Chinese firm ZTE Corp.

Teves had just arrived from a trip to the United States with President Arroyo and other Cabinet officials. Teves met with foreign investors, including rating agencies, on the sidelines of the 62nd United Nations General Assembly.

"They didn't ask about that. They're looking at the country's economic fundamentals and nobody expressed concern on the ZTE deal," said Teves, who met with representatives of rating agencies Moody's Investors Service and Standard & Poor's.

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