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Impeach raps pressed vs CJ Sereno

Published in Latest News

(Photo from Philippine Daily Inquirer)

 

MANILA — Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno broke her silence over the impeachment complaint filed against her by the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) and the Vanguard of the Philippine Constitution Inc. (VPCI) before the House of Representatives, stating that she has not done anything wrong.

 

“I have done nothing wrong. Nothing can be proven against me. I have served the country with all faith and diligence,” Sereno said uring the Ulat sa Hudikatura in Cebu.

 

Alam mo 'yan ang masarap sa malinis na konsensya, it [impeachment] does not affect me at all. The work is there. It is enormous. Just imagine. If I take an inordinate amount of time looking at it and being exasperated by those documents, work will not be done so just give it the right attention so that you understand that when the appropriate time comes, you are ready,” Sereno added.

 

Sereno said she does not want to be bothered by impeachment threats because she wants to focus on the various judicial reforms needed to expedite judicial processes.

 

“If I take an inordinate amount of time looking at it and being exasperated by those documents, work will not be done so just give it the right attention so that you understand that when the appropriate time comes, you are ready,” she noted.

 

The Chief Justice said she gives the allegations against her the "right attention" so she could prepare her answers when the right time comes.

 

"But I shouldn't be fazed because I have done nothing wrong. Nothing can be proven against me that will show that the chief justice has betrayed her oath of office. I have served the country with all faith and diligence. I will never waver from that pledge," she stressed.

 

Last August 2, VACC founding chair Dante Jimenez led the filing of the impeachment bid against Sereno on the grounds of culpable violation of the Constitution and betrayal of public trust.

 

Jimenez noted in the complaint that Sereno culpably violated the Constitution for the following reasons:

-- issuing an administrative order creating the new Judiciary Decentralized Office (JDO) and re-opening the Regional Administration Office (RCAO) in Western Visayas in the absence of an authority from the Court en banc;
-- violating the constitutional provision that appointive government officials shall not hold another public post unless provided for by law, in appointing Atty. Solomon Lumba as her staff head. Lumba was a faculty member of the University of the Philippines (UP) College of Law when he was appointed as Chief Justice staff head;
-- appointing Atty. Brenda Jay Mendoza as Philippine Mediation Center Office Chief by mere memorandum which was not referred to the court en banc for its consideration;
-- granting to members of her staff travel allowances for foreign travel charged to the Supreme Court funds without court en banc approval.

 

VACC also said that Sereno betrayed public trust through “inexcusable negligence”, for sitting on the applications for the vacant posts in the Supreme Court.

 

Lawyer Larry Gadon, on the other hand accused Sereno of living a lavish lifestyle when she purchased a Toyota Land Cruiser worth P5.1 million using public funds.

 

Gadon said Sereno wanted a luxury vehicle on top of her “coterie of security personnel riding in separate vehicles and traffic escorts two motorcycles,” which were also purchased “using Supreme Court funds.”

 

He added that Sereno also uses taxpayers’ money to stay in opulent hotels when attending conferences in the Philippines and abroad, and flying on business or first class together with her staff and security.

 

But Sereno maintained that she has been living a life of modesty.

 

“I have always lived a life of modesty. I have been prudent in use of the court's resources al the expenses for judicial reform, my travels, my security requirements are all regular and above board. Public docs the records will speak for itself and I have not objected in the public release of the same,” the Chief Justice noted.

 

The SC earlier granted the release of additional documents for the impeachment of Sereno as requested by Gadon, who is set to file the second impeachment complaint.

 

The High Court granted Gadon's plea for the release of 20 documents which shall be used against Sereno impeachment case before the House of Representatives.

 

Among these were Sereno's SALNs since she was appointed to the SC in 2010 and documents pertaining to the purchase of Sereno's luxury service vehicle and to her travels.

 

Last Aug. 10, the VACC has already received the records from the Supreme Court in support of the impeachment complaint filed against Sereno.

 

The SC, in an en banc session last August 8, granted the release of documents, except the copy of the memorandum dated July 10, 2017 issued by Associate Justice Teresita Leonardo-De Castro.

 

The SC also granted the release of Sereno's memorandum for appointment of lawyer Solomon Lumba as her staff head and the subsequent letter of Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio withdrawing his signature in the said appointment over an internal issue.

All systems go for Bruno Mars return concert in Manila

Published in Entertainment

By JOJIE M. GABOT

 

(Photo from Instagram | @brunomars)

 

It's all systems go for the Bruno Mars return concert in Manila on May 3, 2018 at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.

 

This as concert promoter MMI Live announced the ticket prices for Bruno Mars' concert which will be on sale starting September 7.

 

The announcement via the SM Tickets website stated that the tickets are priced as follows: VIP 1 STANDING: P23,850; VIP 2 STANDING: P18,550; LOWER BOX A: P13, 250; LOWER BOX B: P 8,480; UPPER BOX: P4,770; and GENERAL ADMISSION: P2,650.

 

The multiple Grammy winner will perform on May 3 next year as part of his “24K Magic” tour. 

 

The Filipino American singer last performed in Manila in March 2014 for his “The Moonshine Jungle” tour. 

 

Some of his hits include "Versace on the Floor," "That's What I Like," and "Just the Way You Are." 

 

The concert is the singer’s third visit in the country. He first performed in April 2011 in Cebu, followed by a concert in Manila in 2014 as part of his “The Moonshine Jungle” world tour.

 

His visit in 2018 is part of his "24k Magic World Tour.

 

The tour, which kicked off last March in Europe, is in support of Mars’ latest album of the same tour name, with three hit singles so far: “Versace on the Floor,” “That’s What I Like,” and the title track.

 

The half-Filipino singer and songwriter whose real name is Peter Gene Hernandez, now 31, is behind latest hit "Versace on the Floor" and well-loved songs "Just the Way You Are" and "That's What I Like".

 

Concert promoter Music Management International (MMI Live) said  tickets will go on sale starting on Sept. 7 via SM Tickets.

 

The 24K Magic World Tour is the third concert tour by the Grammy Award winning popstar, to support his album 24K Magic (2016). It began March 28, at the Sportpaleis in Antwerp, and will conclude at Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur on May 9, 2018.

 

Meanwhile, 24K Magic, the album, has been consistently on top of the charts, with songs like “24K Magic,” “Versace on The Floor,” and “That’s What I Like.”

 

The 31-year old Filipino-Puerto Rican singer-songwriter rose to fame for his early hits “Just The Way You Are,” “Marry You,” “The Lazy Song,” and “Grenade.” His other hits include “Uptown Funk” and “Versace on the Floor.”

FilAms carry PHL flag, haul medals in SEA Games

Published in Sports

By JO ERLINDA MAUFIT

 

(Photo from GMA News)

 

KUALA LUMPUR — Many Filipino Americans shined in the 29th Southeast Asian Games 2017 in Kuala Lumpur winning gold, silver and bronze medals.

 

New York's Trenten Anthony Beram, 21, a University of Connecticut mathematics major whose mother hails from Cebu, led the Filams with two gold medals in the men's 200 and 400 meters run.

 

Beram also won a bronze medal when their 400-meter relay team consisting of fellow Filipino American Eric Cray, and Anfernee Lopena and Archand Bagsit came in third behind Malaysia and Indonesia.

 

Cray, 28, who was born in Olongapo City, before moving to Sacramento, California with his parents, earlier won gold in the 400 meters hurdles and silver in 100 meters sprint.

 

Cray studied at the James Madison High School in San Antonio, Texas, has a degree in Education from Bethune-Cookman University and  a master's degree in Human Relations at the University of Oklahoma.

 

FilAm Kaitlin de Guzman, 17, of Rowlett, Texas and a member of the University of Oklahoma team, is the winningest woman athlete with a gold, silver and bronze in gymnasts.

 

Another FilAm, Samuel Thomas Harper Morrison, romped off with the gold in the taekwondo competition on Aug. 29.

 

Born in Olongapo City of an American serviceman father and Filipina mother, Morrison and family migrated to Maryland but returned to the Philippines when he was seven years old.

 

Now 27, Morrison, a graduate of rhe University of Sto. Tomas vowed to compete in the 2019 SEA Games which Manila will host.

 

Philippines Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano rallied Team Philippines seeing action in the 29th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games which the country will host in 2019.
 


 

Cayetano congratulated the victors as well as commended all Filipino athletes who gave all out their best for flag and country.
 


On Saturday, the Philippines routed the Indonesian five 94-55 and retained the basketball crown, which mattered most for Filipinos struggling to make the Big 5 among 11 nations in the games, raising the country's gold to 18.

 

Other Filipino Americans who shined in the games were fencing gold medalist Louie Wayne Brennan of California, gymnast gold, silver and bronze medalist Kaitlin de Guzman of Texas, only 17 years old, whose mother Cintamoni de Guzman was also a gymnast gold medalist in the 1995 SEA Games, swimmer silver and bronze medalist James Deiparine of Seattle, Washington but graduated from the California Polytechnic State University, golf bronze medalist Lois Kaye Go, 18,  who studies at Boston College, BMX cycling bronze medalist Daniel Caluag and swimmer Nicole Justine Marie Oliva.

 

On the same day, the Philippines collected three more golds two of which courtesy of the poomsae team in taekwondo and the third from judoka Miyoki Watanabe. 

 

The two-time poomsae champion team annexed its third straight crown while Watanabe, training her sights beyond the SEA Games, gained her third straight crown.

 

Also that day, Fil-American James Deiparine who topped the 50m breaststroke event in 28.20 seconds in the morning heats, clocked only 28.60 for the bronze behind defending champion Indra Gunawan of Indonesia in 28.25.

 

As of Saturday night (Aug. 26), the Philippines had a gold-silver-bronze medal tally of 18-24-45, not counting the gold-silver in the 9-ball women’s singles. The Philippines trailed Indonesia (31-43-52), Thailand (44-64-63), Singapore (46-35-52), Vietnam (49-34-43) and frontrunning Malaysia (82-58-53).

 

Brothers Dustin Jacob and Raphael Enrico Mella, who first won the gold in 2013 and in 2015, and this year in partnership with Rodolfo Reyes, scored an average of 3.40 in accuracy and 4.97 in presentation for a total of 8.37 in the men’s team poomsae to give the taekwondo team its first gold following the bronze medal win of the women’s team.

 

Reyes won the Philippines’ bronze in the men’s individual poomsae earlier.

 

The women’s team of Rinna Bananto, Juvenile Faye Crisostomo and Jocel Lyn Ninobla scored 8.27 for the bronze in the women’s event. 

 

Watanabe immediately threw her opponent to the ground, then pinned her down for 36 seconds to win the gold in the -63 kg class in women’s judo.

 

The win gave judo its first gold and one of many other international medals for the Filipino Olympian who is already being included by the Philippine Sports Commission in its program for the 2020 Olympics following her impressive bronze medal finish in the tough Tokyo International Judo Championships last July. 

 

Right after receiving the gold medal in the awarding ceremonies, she left the stadium and Malaysia to catch the first flight to the World Championships in Budapest.

 

Three silver and eight bronze medals were the other mints in the day following second place finishes by Anna Clarice Patrimonio in the women’s singles in tennis, the pair of Marcelito Pancho and Angelo Morales in men’s pair event in lawn bowls and the team of Sophia Joker Arroyo, Marie Antonette Leviste and Syquia Collins in the showjumping event of equestrian.

 

Asian Games champion Daniel Caluag, a Filipino American from California, lacking the training and preparation that earned him the gold in the quadrennial meet in 2014, settled for the bronze in BMX cycling. 

 

Athletics’ last bronze medals came from Kingsley Bautista in the 110 meter hurdles and the 4x400m relay. The fourth bronze came from Mark Griffin in waterski.

 

Jasmine Alkhaldi earned her fourth bronze medal, finishing with a time of 2:02:02 in the 200m freestyle.

 

The following is the official partial list of Filipino medal winners as of August 26:

 

GOLD

1. Mary Joy Tabal (ATHLETICS -- Women’s marathon)

2. Nikko Huelgas (TRIATHLON -- Men’s Individual)

3. Marion Kim Mangrobang (TRIATHLON -- Women’s Individual )

4. Reyland Capellan (MEN'S ARTISTIC GYMNASTICS -- Floor Exercise)

5. Kaitlin Cera Lianne De Guzman (WOMEN'S GYMNASTICS -- Uneven Bars)

6. Agatha Chrystenzen Wong (WUSHU -- Tajiquan)

7. Louie Wayne Brennan (FENCING -- Men’s Foil Individual)

8. Eric Shauwn Cray (ATHLETICS – Men’s 400m Hurdles)

9. Aries Toledo (ATHLETICS – Men’s Decathlon)

10. Anthony Beram (ATHLETICS -- 200m)

11. Robert Curte Guarin/ Emmanuel Portacio/ Leoncio Carreon Jr./ Ronald Lising (LAWN BOWLS -- Men’s Four)

12. Felix Eumir Marcial (BOXING – Middleweight 75kg)

13. Marvin John Nobel Tupas (BOXING – Light Heavyweight 81kg)

14. Anthony Beram (ATHLETICS – 400m)

15. Men’s Team (ICE HOCKEY)

 

SILVER

1. Alvin Pangan/ Joeart Jumawan/ John Jeffrey Morcillos/ John John Bobier/ Rhemwill Catana/ Ronsite Gabayeron/ Regie Rezna Pabrigas (SEPAK TAKRAW -- Men’s Chinlone event)

2. Nicole Tagle (ARCHERY -- Women’s Individual Recurve)

3. John Leerams Chicano (TRIATHLON – Men’s Individual)

4. Claire Adorna (TRIATHLON – Women’s Individual)

5. Agatha Chrystenzen Wong (WUSHU -- Women’s Optional Taijijan)

6. Samantha Catantan (FENCING – Women’s Foil Individual)

7. Nathaniel Perez (FENCING -- Men’s Foil Individual)

8. Haniel Abella (FENCING -- Women’s Epee Individual)

9. Jason Ramil Macaalay (KARATEDO -- Men’s Kumite below 60kg)

10. Rexor Romaquin Tacay (KARATEDO – Men’s Kumite below 67kg)

11. Eric Shauwn Cray (ATHLETICS -- Men’s 100m)

12. Kaitlin Cera Lianne De Guzman (GYMNASTICS -- Women's Artistic Floor Exercise)

13. John Paul Bejar (KARATEDO -- Male Kumite below 55kg)

14. Mark Harry Diones (ATHLETICS -- Men’s Triple Jump)

15. Marco Vilog (ATHLETICS -- Men’s 800m)

16. Mario Fernandez (BOXING – Bantamweight 56kg)

17. Women’s Four (LAWN BOWLS)

18. Jemyca Arebado/ Yvonne Alyssa Dalida (SQUASH – Women’s Jumbo Doubles)

19. Ruben Gonzales/Francis Alcantara (TENNIS -- Men’s Doubles)

20. Hazel Jagonoy/ Rosita Bradborn/ Vilma Greenlees (LAWN BOWLS -- Women’s Triples)

21. James Deiparine (SWIMMING – Men’s 100m Breaststroke)

 

BRONZE

1. Paul Marton Dela Cruz (ARCHERY -- Men’s Individual Compound)

2. Joseph Benjamin Vicencio (ARCHERY-- Men’s Team Compound)

    Paul Marton Dela Cruz (ARCHERY – Men’s Individual Team Compound)

4. Kareel Hongitan (ARCHERY -- Women’s Team Recurve)

    Mary Queen Ybanez (ARCHERY -- Women’s Team Recurve)

    Nicole Tagle (ARCHERY -- Women’s Team Recurve)

5. Florante Matan (ARCHERY -- Men’s Team Recurve)

6. Gabriel Moreno (ARCHERY -- Men’s Team Recurve)

7. Mark Javier (ARCHERY-- Men’s Team Recurve)

8. Mazine Esteban (FENCING --Women’s Foil Individual)

9. Rizzalyn Amolacion/ Mary Ann Lopez/ Jean Marie Sucalit/ Kristel Carloman/ Lhaima Lhiell Mangobat (SEPAK TAKRAW -- Women’s Regu)

10. James Orencio (KARATEDO -- Kata Individual)

11. Richard Gonzales (TABLE TENNIS -- Men’s Singles)

12. Harlene Raguin (FENCING -- Women’s Epee Individual)

13. Junna Tsukii (KARATEDO – Women’s Kumite below 50kg)

14. Roxanne Ashley Yu (SWIMMING – Women’s 200m Backstroke)

15. Evalyn Palabrica (ATHLETICS -- Women’s Javelin Throw)

16. Kaitlin Cera Lianne De Guzman (GYMNASTICS -- Women Balance Beam)

17. Reland Capellan (GYMNASTICS – Men Vault)

18. Mae Soriano (KARATEDO -- Women Kumite below 55kg)

19. Arniel Ferrera (ATHLETICS – Men’s Hammer Throw)

 

 

By CLAIRE MORALES TRUE

 

(Photo from PCOO)

 

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga — President Rodrigo R. Duterte personally showed support to poultry raisers of Pampanga and Nueva Ecija affected by avian flu by joining a boodle fight to assure the people that poultry products from the two provinces are safe to eat.

 

Duterte, along with former President now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, Agriculture Secretary Manny Pinol, Gov. Lilia PIneda and other officials, ate "balut," chicken, quail and "itik.:

 

At the same time, Duterte distributed checks to chicken, quail and duck raisers affected by bird flu as indemnity and assistance for the culling of some 700,000 birds in poultry farms in four towns in the two provinces.

 

In the presence of former Pampanga congresswoman Andrea Domingo, now Chairman and CEO of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor), Mr. Duterte said the assistance to the poultry raisers maybe increased possibly from Pagcor funds.

 

The President also presented citations to soldiers, policemen and other local and national officials who helped in culling the birds and in containing the avian flu before it could spread to other areas.

 

Duterte also assured that the national government will continue its surveillance and vigilance to mitigate the impact of bird flu.

 

Speaking before some 1,000 people from the local government units and poultry raisers, Duterte said Pampanga is not only a factor in food security but part of the food chain.

 

“The efforts and sweat poured in by the Kapampangans play a crucial role in securing the country’s food chain,” the President added.

 

He also pointed out the resiliency of the Kapampangans in these trying times, and that he is confident that the LGUs can contain the avian flu outbreak.

 

The President, together with Secretary  Piñol, awarded an indemnity check to San Luis town worth P20,723,790.

 

He also gave checks to two poultry farm owners from Jaen town, Mary Grace Castro and Manuel Ruiz Luiz, whose poultry farms were depopulated because of the avian flu outbreak.

 

Shortly after the awarding ceremonies, President Duterte, along with Piñol, Governor Pineda, Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, Rep. Aurelio Gonzales, Bulacan Goveror Willy Alvarado and local chief executives ate chicken, balut, and eggs in a boodle fight here to show the public that poultry products in Pampanga are safe.

 

  Piñol said an opportunity was presented by the crisis brought about by the avian influenza outbreak after a group of German and Colombian engineers committed to provide technology to turn chicken manure to organic fertilizer.

 

He said the group is now establishing a facility for the project.

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