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Our issue for April 25, 2009

Philippines FREE PRESS

April 25, 2009 Issue

Main Features

Cover: Speaker Prospero Nograles and Kampi President Luis Villafuerte

1. The Enablers

Speaker Prospero Nograles resigns as president of Lakas-CMD and Rep. Luis Villafuerte steps down as president of Kampi to give way to the merger the two parties of President Arroyo. But the merger is an old story and the resignations of Nograles and Villafuerte are only intended to project concentration on next year’s general elections. The two parties will still force passage of a resolution for a constituent assembly that will revise the Constitution for a shift to parliamentary government, which will enable Mrs. Arroyo to run for a seat in parliament, there to be elected prime minister. Their intention is to get a ruling from the Supreme Court by June on whether the House of Representatives can revise the Constitution without the Senate, which refuses to take part in a constituent assembly. With three new justices on the court by June, the administration believes the decision will go its way. If that happens, forget the presidential election.

         By Guiller de Guzman

2. Moral Force

Chief Justice Reynato Puno leads a new movement for the moral transformation of the Philippines, largely aimed at shaming the Arroyos and their allies into leaving public life after next year’s general elections. Supported by the Catholic Church and other religious denominations in the Philippines, civic, legal, and activist groups, the movement will define the characteristics of good leaders and muster 10 million votes to ensure the election of such leaders next year. But will there be elections?

         By Guiller de Guzman

3. The Killers

Human Rights Watch blames the continuing vigilante-style killings in Davao City on President Arroyo. By supporting the city’s tough-guy mayor, Rodrigo Duterte, Mrs. Arroyo, the group says, in effect sanctions the killings. More than 800 people, mostly critics of Duterte, according to House Speaker Prospero Nograles, have been killed since 2001, about the same number of activists, trade unionists, human-rights workers and lawyers who have been killed in various parts of the country since Mrs. Arroyo came to power in that year. But don’t expect anything to come out of the Human Rights Commission’s investigation: the National Police, though ordered by Mrs. Arroyo to support the probe, is daring human rights advocates to prove that there are vigilante killings in Davao.

         By Guiller de Guzman

4. Give Earth a Chance

April—Earth Month—is cruel to the United States, which insists predictions of catastrophes caused by climate change are based only on computer models and cannot actually happen. The out-of-season storm system and wildfires that swept from Texas to Tennessee on April really happened, and they were exactly the kind of catastrophes that Europe and Asia, including the Philippines, are asking the United States to help avert by joining the global effort to slow down climate change.

         By J. de Jesus

5. Features


  1. eric pasion says:

    we’re reaqlly experiencing the effect of climate change today. in Tuguegarao City alone, we always ecounter the scorching heat of the sun till two o’clock or three in the afternoon then suddenly nimbus clouds to hover over the city then a heavy rain follows. A many is quite puzzled on the changes in climate, usually the folks here who where used to the extremes temperature of the city. I mean TUGUEGARAO is the hottest on summers and belong to the coolest as the -ber months progressses. we need really to take actions now to minimize the effect of the climate change. we may not totally get away from it coz the thing is here now. what we can only do today is to take actions that may possibly lessen the effects of it ( or make the change gradual for us to cope with it, not an abrupt change.)

  2. The Arroyo Government have made enough troubles already. I hope this political wars will end soon.

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