"President Aquino must answer many questions."
President Duterte should push through with his plan to invite former Philippine presidents — Fidel Ramos, Joseph Estrada, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and Benigno Aquino III — to his weekly television talk to discuss issues regarding his pivot to China.
Duterte will benefit from the advice of former presidents. Aquino, specifically, could clarify issues linked to China's incursion into the West Philippine Sea.
This is the mystery of the back-channeling of then-Senator Antonio Trillanes IV during the controversy affecting Scarborough Shoal, which the Philippines eventually lost to China.
The reasons behind the back-channeling of Trillanes has not been made public for reasons unknown. What we know is that Aquino approved it. Since the matter involved national security, Aquino should answer all the questions surrounding this issue.
Of greater interest to us Filipinos is why, during the incumbency of Aquino, then Philippine Ambassador to Washington Joey Cuisia moved, at the intervention of a certain Kurt Campbell, to broker the controversy between the Philippines and China. It was never known who Campbell was and what the reasons were that the Philippines ended up withdrawing from that sea dispute. Filipino fishermen’s livelihood was significantly affected.
If Aquino refuses to reveal the details of the back-channeling and the reasons the Philippines lost in that dispute, then the Senate should conduct an honest-to-goodness investigation.
The insights of the other former Philippine presidents would also be a big help in Duterte’s pivot to China and Russia and his pursuit of an independent foreign policy.
The election is fast approaching. These controversies need to be clarified.
The House of Representatives is scheduled to have the impeachment case against Supreme Court Associate Justice Marvic Leonen voted upon by the justice committee this week. This is before the House adjourns this coming month.
There can be no doubt that the impeachment case against Leonen is good in both form and substance. The failure, for instance, of Leonen to file his SALN (Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth) as a professor at the UP College of Law is very clear. Failure to do so is a culpable violation of the Constitution and a betrayal of public trust. The failure of Leonen to submit his decision on cases assigned to him within 24 months is also a culpable violation of the Constitution and betrayal of public trust.
There is no need for the House justice committee if the members of panel have a majority approval to submit its findings for the plenary. The justice committee can elevate the case to the Senate. The Senate could convene as a body to render judgment on whether Leonen would be convicted. This is both a judicial and political decision. It’s a numbers game.
A poll survey showed that four out of 10 adult Filipinos prefer US-made vaccines for COVID-19. This stands to reason because Pfizer and Moderna both have 90-percent efficacy. Filipinos are aware of this.
It is now a policy not to disclose the brand that local government units would inject to their constituents. Personally I believe this is unfair. I would prefer to know what is being injected into my body.
I don’t buy what the World Health Organization says that all vaccines, no matter what brand, are effective. In that aspect the WHO believes that all the vaccines can provide the immunity and safety against the COVID-19 pandemic.
My wife and I, together with our daughter, are listed to have our vaccination at SM Sucat. I guess we have no choice of whatever vaccine brand we will get.
After the shutdown of the Lopez-owned ABS-CBN there was no doubt that GMA network remained the country’s dominant radio-television network.
In fact, with its 53 radio-television stations nationwide, GMA-7 remained dominant not only in reach of viewership, but in gross income. GMA-7 relies on AGB Nielsen data, the more reliable data surveyor than Kantar which ABS-CBN relies on.
People had the mistaken impression that even before the shutdown of ABS-CBN and the denial by Congress for renewal of its 25-year franchise, the Lopez-owned network was the dominant and more influential network. The truth of the matter is that long before the shutdown of the network, GMA-7 was already No. 1 in reach and viewership under Chairman and CEO Felipe Gozon of GMA-7.
In its recent annual stockholders’ meeting, Gozon touted GMA’s superior television ratings and reach.
As proof of GMA’s dominance, investors are already lining up in preparation for the 2022 local and national elections knowing full well that political advertisements will make the value per share of GMA jump.
The fact that GMA-7 became the No. 1 radio-television network is mainly due to the leadership of Gozon.