[Blueboard] Newsbriefs 21 May 2012 Afternoon

SLB slb at admu.edu.ph
Mon May 21 17:35:20 PHT 2012

The contents of this newsbrief service do not necessarily reflect the views of SLB. News and opinion are summarized from various sources; and headlines are retained as they are in the original. Rights on the article remain on the websites indicated. For more detailed information about any story in this bulletin visit the website indicated in every news item.)

Newsbriefs 21 May 2012 Afternoon

Simbahang Lingkod ng Bayan


Aquino meets with INC head in QC headquarters (Philippine Daily Inquirer)


"MANILA, Philippines-President Benigno Aquino III on Monday met with Iglesia ni Cristo leader Eduardo Manalo at the religious group's central temple in Quezon City to talk about the impeachment trial of Chief Justice Renato Corona, among others, a Malacañang official said.


Secretary Edwin Lacierda, President Aquino's spokesperson, said that the meeting with Manalo was supposed to have taken place during the Holy week but it was only last Monday that they got a common schedule.


Lacierda said that Mr. Aquino sought the meeting with the INC leader "just to touch base" with the influential religious group said to be supporting Corona and reportedly lobbying for the latter's acquittal in the  Senate impeachment trial.


"The impeachment was discussed because it's one of the burning issues of the day," Lacierda told reporters, adding that the subject was "part of his reform program."


Senators mum over caucus about Corona  (INQUIRER.net)


"MANILA, Philippines - Senators on Monday held a caucus but kept mum on what they discussed about the impeachment trial of Chief Justice Renato Corona.


"The caucus decided that the Senate President will make the announcements on the decision at tomorrow's (Tuesday) hearing," said Senator Franklin Drilon, who attended the caucus.


But reporters who waited outside the office of Senate President Juan Ponce-Enrile failed to get an interview with the Senate leader who dashed into another meeting after the caucus.

Other senators also declined to talk and just referred the matter to the Senate President."


SC employees show support for Corona (ABS-CBN News)


"MANILA, Philippines - It's another "Red Monday" for Supreme Court (SC) officials and employees in support of embattled Chief Justice Renato Corona.


By wearing red as a sign of "courage and vigilance," the SC family continues to show the Chief Justice their support and solidarity as he "toils in the vineyard of justice," court employees said.

The magistrates of the high court are on a break from en banc sessions, and will resume their sessions in next month."


Palace downplays bishops' stand on CJ trial (ABS-CBNnews.com)


"MANILA, Philippines - Malacañang downplayed the support of some Catholic bishops for Chief Justice Renato Corona, saying the Church has not yet issued any formal statement on the matter.


Lipa Archbishop Ramon Arguelles celebrated mass at the Supreme Court on Monday, in preparation for Corona's testimony in the impeachment trial. Corona hails from Batangas.


While the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) has not given a formal position on the matter, its president, Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma, has always called on the Senate to implement due process and respect the rights of the accused.


In a press conference in Malacañang, Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said, "I don't believe [Archbishop] Arguelles stands for.there's no official stand of the CBCP."


He added: "We don't rely on individual bishops. Even [Archbishop] Palma, we have not heard from him other than his short interviews."


Corona dare: Answer qestions 'truthfully' (www.philstar.com)


"MANILA, Philippines - The prosecution panel in the impeachment trial of Chief Justice Renato Corona warned the defense panel that Corona may put himself in an "embarrassing situation" if he refuses to "truthfully" answer questions on Tuesday.


Quezon 4th District Rep. Lorenzo "Erin" Tañada, a spokesman for the House of Representatives' prosecution team, said the prosecution will extend all courtesies to Corona but the Chief Justice must be willing to answer questions and answer them truthfully.


"He should be ready to answer questions about his SALN (statement of assets, liabilities and net worth)," Tañada said in a television report.


Tranquil Salvador III, a member of the defense team, said they are expecting the "worst" and "no mercy" in the cross-examination of Corona.


"Umaasa kami na mabibigyan ng respeto si Chief Justice katulad ng pagrespeto kay Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales. Si Ombudsman nabigyan ng lahat ng pag-galang. Kahit nga abogado, ina-argue niya," Salvador said."


Aquino fails to curb rights abuses - Human Rights Watch (INQUIRER.net)


"MANILA, Philippines - The government has not been able to improve the human rights situation of the country since 2008 when it was last reviewed by the United Nations (UN), Human Rights Watch said Monday.


"The administration of President Benigno Aquino III has failed to take significant measures to prosecute members of the military, police and militias implicated in extrajudicial killings, torture, and enforced disappearances," Human Rights Watch said in a statement released Monday during a press conference.


Human Rights Watch called on the United Nations (UN) to pressure the Philippine government to "ensure accountability for serious human rights abuses," at the upcoming  Universal Periodic Review (UPR) on May 29, 2012.


The UPR is a periodic review conducted every four years by the UN Human Rights Council which is composed of UN member countries.


The Philippines received 17 recommendations ranging from "improving gender rights to eliminating extrajudicial killings," the first time it was reviewed in 2008.


"The Philippines accepted 11 of these recommendations, including one 'to completely eliminate torture and extrajudicial killings' and 'to intensify its efforts to carry out investigations and prosecutions in extrajudicial killings and punish those responsible'," Human Rights Watch said."

SWS: Unemployment hits record-high 34.4%; 13.8M jobless (www.gmanews.tv)


"At least 13.8 million Filipinos were jobless in the first quarter of 2012 as unemployment hit a "record-high" 34.4 percent in the first three months of the year, according to a new survey by pollster Social Weather Stations.


SWS said the survey conducted March 10 to 13 showed the 34.4-percent unemployment rate was 10 points more than the 24 percent or 9.7 million jobless Filipinos recorded in December 2011.


The SWS, which published the results of its latest survey Monday on its media partner BusinessWorld, also said the 34.4-percent rate was 10 points higher than the 24 percent-about 9.7 million Filipinos jobless-recorded in December 2011.


It also surpassed the previous record of 34.2 percent in February 2009, it added.


The SWS findings also compared with the government's own Labor Force Survey (LFS) in January, which showed unemployment rate eased slightly to 7.2 percent from 7.4 percent in 2011, with the ranks of the jobless barely moving to 2.922 million from 2.917 million in the same period.


The survey was conducted among 1,200 Filipino adults nationwide."



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