[Blueboard] Newsbriefs 25 September 2007 Afternoon

Simbahang Lingkod ng Bayan slb at admu.edu.ph
Tue Sep 25 18:10:29 PHT 2007

Newsbriefs 25 September 2007 Afternoon

Simbahang Lingkod ng Bayan



Arroyo: Bribery allegations in NBN deal uncorroborated (abs-cbnNEWS.com)


Malacañang's investigation on bribery allegations in connection with the national broadband network contract has yielded negative results, President Arroyo said Tuesday, a day before a crucial Senate hearing on the NBN deal, DZMM reported.


"When we learned of the alleged bribery attempt in connection with the broadband project I instructed that the matter be discreetly investigated. The result of the investigation was reported as uncorroborated," Mrs. Arroyo said.


The report said that Malacañang created a special panel to look into the bribery allegations.


Mrs. Arroyo's announcement came a day before former socio-economic planning secretary Romulo Neri and Commission on Elections chief Bernjamin Abalos are set to attend a Senate inquiry into the NBN deal.


(UPDATE 2) Estrada nixes Arroyo pardon for now--Puno (INQUIRER.net)

MANILA, Philippines -- Convicted president Joseph Estrada has held off any proposal by the Arroyo administration to grant him pardon and would exhaust all legal remedies to secure his release, Interior and Local Government Secretary Ronaldo Puno has said.

In a press briefing after visiting Estrada in his resthouse in Tanay, Rizal, Tuesday, Puno said Estrada informed him that he would file a motion for reconsideration before the Sandiganbayan anti-graft court Wednesday.

Quoting Estrada, Puno said the former leader would not apply for a pardon if conditions would be attached, including an admission of guilt.

But Puno said he told Estrada that the judicial process was separate from executive action.

Smart, Globe deny involvement in wiretapping activities (abs-cbnNEWS.com)


Officials of two major mobile phone service providers in the country denied Tuesday that their respective companies were involved in any wiretapping activity as alleged by former military intelligence agent T/Sgt. Vidal Doble, the main witness in the Senate's reinvestigation on the "Hello, Garci" scandal. 


Ramon Isberto, head of Smart's public affairs, said during Tuesday's hearing that after an investigation conducted by the mobile phone service provider did not find any indication to show the company or its personnel got involved in wiretapping operations. 


"We have done our own internal investigations into this matter, and so far, we have not uncovered any indications that these have taken place with the connivance of our personnel," Isberto said.


AFP says destabilization plot is real (abs-cbnNEWS.com)


The Armed Forces of the Philippines on Tuesday said that an alleged fresh destabilization plot divulged by AFP chief Gen. Hermogenes Esperon Jr. last Friday is real and not a "scare tactic", DZMM reported.


Lt. Col. Bartolome Bacarro, AFP public information chief, belied speculations that Esperon's statement had no basis and was mere propaganda.


Esperon on Friday said six junior officers were relieved from their positions for allegedly recruiting troops for a coup plot against the Arroyo administration.


The Armed Forces chief declined to identify the six officers. He said the six are being investigated for their supposed involvement in a recruitment for a fresh destabilization plot against the administration.


Teachers to Lapus: Stop whining, address educational problems (abs-cbnNEWS.com)


A teachers group on Tuesday called on Education Secretary Jesli Lapus to stop complaining about the suspension and instead, work for the scrapping of the Cyber Education (CyberEd) Project which was signed by the Philippine government with China last April. along with the controversial national broadband network (NBN) deal with ZTE Corp.


Antonio Tinio, chairman of the Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT), said instead of hoping for the revival of CyberEd, Lapus should just address the basic needs of the public school system.


"We advise Sec. Lapus to take his sadly misplaced enthusiasm and zeal for the CEP and devote it instead to lobbying Congress for higher salaries for teachers, elimination of teacher, classroom, and textbook shortages, abolition of fees in public schools, direct subsidies to poor children who are most at risk of dropping out, and so on," Tinio said in a statement.

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