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Friday, May 6, 2016

Rodrigo Duterte: From 'Punisher' to Philippines President?

(CNN)He's caused outrage with inflammatory comments on the rape and murder of an Australian missionary, but Philippine presidential candidate Rodrigo Duterte has been fighting controversy most of his long political life.
Well-known at home for his provocative quotes and colorful past as mayor of a local town, Duterte is an old hand at courting the local media, and voters, with his antics.

Curses ambassadors and the Pope

Duterte has featured in the Philippine press throughout his political career but made international headlines recently with comments he made in a YouTube video on the 1989 rape and murder of an Australian missionary.
"I was angry she was raped, yes that was one thing. But she was so beautiful, I think the mayor should have been first. What a waste," he said of the attack, which took place in Davao City, where he has been mayor on and off since 1998.
He has repeatedly refused to apologize for the comments and told the ambassadors of the U.S. and Australia, two of the Philippines' closest allies, to "shut their mouth" after they criticized his "joke". He has also disowned an apology that was issued on his behalf by his political party.
He can show remorse though, sending a letter of apology to the Pope last year after he cursed the pontiff for the traffic he caused during a January visit to the country.
"We were affected by the traffic. It took us five hours. I asked why, they said it was closed. I asked who is coming. They answered, the Pope. I wanted to call him, "Pope, (swear words), go home. Do not visit us again," he said.
In a response that was leaked to the press, the Pope acknowledged the apology and offered Duterte his prayers. 
 

LOOK: Duterte shows balance of BPI dollar, peso accounts

MANILA, Philippines — Presidential candidate Davao City Mayor Rodrigo "Rody" Duterte on Wednesday presented his Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) peso and dollar accounts before members of the media at a press conference at The Philippine Star.
Duterte brought 11 passbooks and a certification issued by the BPI Julia Vargas branch dated May 3, 2016. The document showed that the current balance of the mayor and his daughter Sara Duterte-Carpio's joint account is at P17,816.98 since March 31, 2014.


The mayor's camp also showed the deposits that the BPI Julia Vargas account got from people who wanted to validate its existence. Since Sen. Antonio “Sonny” Trillanes  IV made public the alleged undeclared P211 million, deposits to the account reached P128,829.34.
“Madaming pumapasok (sa bank account), anong gagawin ko diyan ngayon?" Duterte said upon learning of the amount received by his bank account.
Aside from the peso account, Duterte also answered fellow  presidential candidate Manuel “Mar” Roxas II’s allegation that he has a dollar account with a large sum of money. Duterte showed the bank certification for the said account which showed that its current balance is $5021.70.


The mayor also threatened to make Roxas eat the certification to prove that he is wrong. “Ipapakain ko ito kay Mar,” he said.
Asked by a reporter about Trillanes’s claims that the P211 million was deposited last March 28, 2014, Duterte answered vaguely. He said that he is daring the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC), Banko Sentral ng Pilipinas and the Commission on Audit to probe him.
Duterte insisted that Trillanes is a liar and the latter's allegation that he is a smuggler is not true. He said that AMLC and other agencies could have investigated him already if it was true.
“That is criminal negligence kung wala silang (AMLC, other agencies) aksyon. Bakit hindi ako iniimbestigahan? Anong klaseng AMLC ka? You allow dirty money floating in banks. Dapat magtulong-tulong sila para mailabas ang P2.4 (billion),” Duterte said.
“Alam ninyong dirty money yang P2.4 (billion), bakit wala akong narinig? Wala akong criminal proceeding?” he added.

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Duterte, Marcos get INC endorsement for May 9 polls

Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) endorses presidential candidate Davao Mayor Rodrigo Duterte (L), and Sen. Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. (R) for vice president.

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — Less than a week remains before the nation finally chooses the country’s next set of leaders.
With survey results indicating close fights, any candidate could make use of the support from political and religious groups, especially those that are said to deliver bloc votes — like the Iglesia ni Cristo (INC).
According to a report posted on Thursday (May 5) on the website of an INC-linked media group eaglenews.ph, the INC leadership has endorsed presidential candidate Rodrigo Duterte and vice presidential candidate Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. to its followers.
The INC is also backing the following senatorial candidates:
  • Franklin Drilon
  • Win Gatchalian
  • Dick Gordon
  • Risa Hontiveros
  • Panfilo Lacson
  • Manny Pacquiao
  • Ralph Recto
  • Martin Romualdez
  • Vicente Sotto
  • Francis Tolentino
  • Joel Villanueva
  • Migz Zubiri
The eaglenews report says the names of the candidates supported by INC are in sample ballots being distributed to sect members “all over the country.”
However, as of posting, the religious group has not made an official announcement about the endorsement.
According to INC, around 2 million of its members are registered voters.

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Palparan on Duterte: 'It's fake bravery'

In what may perhaps be one of the greatest ironies in an already surreal election season, the man called the Butcher of Southern Luzon is now castigating Mindanao’s Punisher

MANILA, Philippines – In what may perhaps be one of the greatest ironies in an already surreal election season, the man called the Butcher of Southern Luzon is now castigating Mindanao’s Punisher.
“I am retired Major General Jovito S. Palparan Jr, 65 years old, going 66 in September. I am a retired army officer, and jobless as of now.”
Palparan is being held without bail for the kidnapping of University of the Philippines' students Sherlyn Cadapan and Karen Empeño. He denies the charges, and is running for a senate seat.
The former soldier has collected a number of monikers under his belt. Butcher, hangman and godfather are only a few. Under his command, in every area where he led his battalions, the list of murdered activists and alleged communists rose in number. He has been accused by progressive groups of ordering rape, murder and various forms of torture that include waterboarding, beatings, and mutilation.
Palparan went into hiding before he could be arrested. He was caught after a manhunt that lasted almost three years.
His single-minded crusade against communists has been compared to Duterte’s war on crime. Duterte has long been linked to the Davao Death Squad, a vigilante group that allegedly targets criminals in the city.
The comparison has been rejected by both candidates, both of whom hail from Mindanao.
Duterte calls Palparan "the pathetic former army general who sees things red because of his bloodshot eyes."
Palparan calls Duterte a coward and an egomaniac who "likes to be adored."
"He stands for nothing," Palparan said. "He does not have principles"
In a three-hour interview with Rappler on Thursday, May 5, at a military detention center in Fort Bonifacio, Taguig, the former major general was contemptuous of Duterte's strongman image.
“I knew it, he’s just trying to be cool,” Palparan said. “What Duterte wants, that he’s going to kill the criminals, he’s just trying to be cool.”

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Duterte widens lead in final pre-election SWS survey

Four days before the national elections, presidential candidate Rodrigo Duterte widens his lead in the final Social Weather Station survey.
The results published on BusinessWorld late Thursday revealed 33 percent would vote for the controversial Davao City mayor.
The BusinessWorld-SWS pre-election survey was conducted May 1 to May 3 through face-to-face interviews with 4,500 validated voters nationwide with a sampling error margin of ± 1 point.
The rating of his closest contender, Senator Grace Poe, slipped to 22 percent from 24 percent from the preceding April 18-20 survey.
The score of Liberal Party standard bearer Manuel A. Roxas II’s remains at 20 percent from 19 percent.
Vice-President Jejomar C. Binay, who recently said he doesn’t believe in surveys anymore, slipped to 13 percent from 14 percent.
Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago still got 2 percent flat from her previous score.
The report said four percent were undecided.

Who is Rodrigo Duterte?

He was a latecomer in the presidential race but has surged as frontrunner in the latest surveys.
PDP-Laban standard bearer Rodrigo Duterte is now the target of criticism because of his style of governance, language, and personal affairs.
Duterte has given himself a deadline to end crime and corruption in the country, if elected president:
"Sinasabi ko sa inyo, three to six months, we get rid of crime, and corruption. Subukan niyo ako. I am willing to put at stake my honor, my life and the office itself."

Duterte SALNs don't match alleged bank accounts

Details in the alleged hidden bank accounts of presidential candidate Rodrigo Duterte don't match details in his 2004 to 2015 SALN. Who's telling the truth?

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – Just when he finally took the lead in presidential preference surveys, presidential candidate and Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte finds himself caught in the middle of issues pertaining to unexplained wealth.
Vice presidential candidate and Senator Antonio Trillanes IV revealed that Duterte has at least P227 million in a bank account in Manila which he didn't declare in his Statement of Assets, Liabilities, and Net Worth (SALN).
In his 2015 SALN, which was submitted weeks before the elections, he declared he has a net worth of P23.72 million. The biggest chunk of his assets is "cash on hand/bank", worth P14.84 million – more than the amount of his combined real properties valued at P4.49 million.
But Trillanes' allegations could belie this.

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Duterte camp sees ‘big boost' in campaign after INC endorsement

MANILA, Philippines – The camp of presidential candidate Davao City Mayor Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte on Thursday welcomed the endorsement of influential church Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) and said that its support would heighten the mayor’s campaign.
“We welcome the endorsement of the Iglesia ni Cristo INC). This is a big boost to our campaign particularly to thwart attempts by the administration to cheat the elections,” Duterte’s spokesperson Peter Laviña said in a statement sent ahead of the announcement of INC-run Eagle Broadcasting Corp.

According to Laviña, the INC endorsement is a reflection that Duterte’s advocacy for change is effective to most people and church formations, which the camp is thankful for.
“This endorsement shows that Duterte's advocacy for Tunay Na Pagbabago has resonated to almost all our people and all our church formations affected by the rising crimes and drugs, continuing corruption and government neglect, poverty and sufferings of our people. These issues are close to the hearts of our moral leaders and the various churches have their own campaigns to end this malady,” Laviña said.
“Hence, we have received various expressions of support from many religious groups and religious leaders not just from the INC. But fully aware of its church discipline in voting, this INC endorsement is truly significant. We thank the INC as well all other religious groups and religious leaders,” he added.
Aside from other religious groups, Laviña also thanked Pope Francis for saying his prayers for Duterte. Last April, the mayor received a letter from the Vatican as a reply to his apology for cursing the Pope in a speech.
While discussing the endorsement, Duterte’s spokesman also took a swipe against the Liberal Party for claiming the momentum and said it was an empty boast.
INC earlier endorsed Duterte, vice presidential candidate Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. along with 12 other senatorial candidates. It is expected to provide around 2 million votes for the candidates.

How Loudmouth Mayor Rodrigo Duterte Got to the Verge of the Philippines Presidency

Despite rape jokes, profanity-laced speeches and a complete lack of national government experience With thrusting spears and thumping feet, the Philippines’ Higaunon tribe perform a frenzied war dance to celebrate this year’s Kaamulan festival, high in the emerald peaks of insurgency-wracked Mindanao Island. Eleven teams competed in this riot of pageantry; hundreds of performers clad in crimson-stripped native dress twirled shields and flourished flags, gamboling in consort under a cacophony of shrill percussion.
Yet the several thousand spectators who braved the blistering April 1 sun were really gathered to glimpse a modern-day warrior: Rodrigo Duterte, the crime-busting mayor of Davao City, who received a rapturous reception when he dropped by to campaign for the nation’s presidential elections on May 9.
“In Mindanao people love me,” Duterte told TIME after his speech, which was the profanity-laced medley of jokes and taunts that has become his populist trademark.


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Philippine presidential front-runner Rodrigo Duterte open to talks with Beijing to resolve South China Sea dispute

Bilateral talks would mark a departure from the policy of outgoing President Benigno Aquino, who has brought China before an international arbitration panel to try to resolve the dispute, leading to a deterioration in bilateral ties

Rodrigo Duterte, the tough-talking Davao City mayor who is leading Philippine presidential polls, said he will hold bilateral talks with China to resolve a territorial dispute in the South China Sea if the current multilateral discussions don’t bear fruit within two years.
Duterte told supporters Sunday night on Liwasang Bonifacio square in Manila City that he will defend Philippine claims in the contested waters while remaining open to the possibility of joint exploration for energy assets with China. He may also ask China to help build key railway projects connecting Manila to provinces and for assistance with a long-standing plan for a train system in Mindanao, his home region.
“If negotiations will be in still waters in 1 or 2 years, I will talk to the Chinese,” Duterte, 71, told a crowd of about a thousand people.

LP's 'Plan B'? Duterte ouster if Robredo wins – Marcos

Senator Ferdinand 'Bongbong' Marcos Jr continues his assault on his top rival, who now shares his poll front-runner ranking in surveys on vice presidential bets

GUARD VOTES. Vice presidential candidate Ferdinand 'Bongbong' Marcos Jr talks to voters in Cavite to protect their votes against fraudulent practices. Photo by Patty Pasion / Rappler
MANILA, Philippines – Senator Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr has stepped up his attack against his top rival for the vice presidency on the same day another independent survey showed him neck-and-neck with administration candidate Leni Robredo.
Days before the May 9 elections, Marcos accused the ruling Liberal Party of plotting to wrest the presidency from Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, if elected and if Robredo wins as vice president.
The vice presidential candidate said on Friday, May 6, that he has been hearing reports about the LP's "Plan B" to ensure it stays in power in the next 6 years. A day earlier, he urged his voters to guard their votes, saying he would only lose if there is cheating on May 9.
"Pag naupo, i-impeach si Duterte na inumpisahan na (When Duterte assumes the presidency, he will be impeached)," the senator said in a rally in Bacoor City.
He was referring to the threat of Senator Antonio Trillanes IV of the Nacionalista Party that he would move to impeach Duterte if the latter becomes president. This is based on the mayor's alleged undeclared bank account at the Bank of Philippine Islands branch in Ortigas.
Trillanes had already filed a plunder complaint against Duterte before the Office of the Ombudsman. He cited a 2015 Commission on Audit report that revealed the local city government allegedly employed 11,000 ghost employees with an annual budget allocation of P708 million.
At the rally, Marcos accused the LP of banking on Robredo's closer chance to victory and the corruption allegations against Duterte to ensure its continued political dominance in the country.
Asked about the credibility of his source, Marcos said he got the information from some "friends" from the LP.
"Kahit papaano may kaibigan pa rin naman tayo sa loob ng Liberal. At 'yun ang sinasabi at nagiging usapan (We still have friends inside LP. And that's the discussion [they] have been telling me)," he told reporters after the rally in Cavite.
Just like in his miting de avance on Thursday, Marcos continued to question the recent surge of Robredo in recent surveys, and claimed this was part of the administration's alleged mind-conditioning strategy.
Robredo's rise as top choice for vice president – statistically tied with Marcos – is reflected in 3 surveys conducted by independent pollsters: the ABS-CBN survey conducted by Pulse Asia Research, Incorporated, the Social Weather Stations survey, and The Standard poll conducted by Laylo Research Stategies.
Marcos said this alleged mind conditioning on Robredo's surge in the surveys is linked to the possible impeachment of Duterte.
"A case has been filed against him. We know that it won't be resolved between today and the elections," Marcos said in a mix of English and Filipino.
Marcos' standard-bearer, Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago, earlier speculated that Malacañang was behind Trillanes' probe into Duterte's alleged assets because he was able to track his bank accounts.

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Cayetano: Anti-Duterte ad part of 'bigger conspiracy'

Senator Alan Peter Cayetano alludes to double standards in the media's treatment of presidential and vice presidential candidates, and an alleged conspiracy among the 'elite' and TV networks against the presidential poll front-runner

CONSPIRACY? PDP-Laban's vice presidential bet Alan Peter Cayetano bares his thoughts about the anti-Rodrigo Duterte ad, saying there might be a conspiracy. Screengrab by Rappler
MANILA, Philippines – Senator Alan Peter Cayetano said that the negative political advertisement against Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte pointed to a "bigger conspiracy" against the presidential candidate.
Cayetano bared the allegation in an interview with Rappler Friday, May 6, as he lamented how ABS-CBN approved an anti-Duterte ad but rejected his own one-minute ad, which he said did not contain any vulgarity.
“Now that the political elite, the economic elite, and the elite in the media is bound together for this conspiracy, it just gives us more strength,” he said.
Cayetano did not mince words as he alluded to double standards and a conspiracy among the “elite” and TV networks.
He cited the rejection of his one-minute ad that included the last part of the vice presidential debate on ABS-CBN "where I talked about the EDSA revolution and I talked about my dad, and why I see my dad in Mayor Duterte. His love for the country and he’s willing to sacrifice. They disapproved it. The ethics committee disapproved it, no vulgarity.”
Cayetano said that in contrast, the anti-Duterte ad that started airing on ABS-CBN on Thursday night, May 5, "exploited" children. He succeeded in securing a temporary restraining order on ABS-CBN's airing of the ad from the Regional Trial Court in Taguig City after the Rappler interview on Friday,
"That’s ethical? Maybe ABS should rename their ethics committee to the unethical committee because they only approve unethical ads," he said.

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ABS-CBN on ‘anti-Duterte’ TVC: We are duty-bound to air legitimate ad

Television giant ABS-CBN has said it was “duty-bound to air a legitimate ad” after the network was criticized for airing an “anti-Duterte ad.”
On Thursday night, a 30-second political advertisement against Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte was aired on ABS-CBN.
In a statement released that night, the network said it had nothing to do with the production of the political ad, and that it was “duty-bound to air a legitimate ad.”
“The controversial political advertisement being talked about in social media, which aired on ABS-CBN, was produced and paid for by Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV. Prior to the airing, ABS-CBN’s ethics committee reviewed the content of the material, which complies with the requirements of pertinent election laws,” ABS-CBN said.
“By airing the said commercial, ABS-CBN is being consistent with COMELEC guidelines, which prohibit radio or television stations to discriminate in the sale of air time against any political party or candidate. We are duty bound to air a legitimate ad,” the network added.
It said the political was paid by Sen. Antonio Trilllanes IV.
Prior to airing with ABS-CBN, an audio version of the ad has been airing on radio stations.
Another ad about Duterte also began airing on rival network GMA-7 on Thursday.
On Thursday, Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano warned the public regarding the possible airing of multi-million pesos worth of negative advertisements against his running mate Duterte.

Trillanes kinasuhan ng plunder si Duterte dahil sa ghost employees

NAGSAMPA si Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV ng plunder laban kay Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte sa Office of the Ombudsman kaugnay ng umano’y mga ghost employees sa Davao City.
Sinabi ni Trillanes na batay sa report ng Commission on Audit (COA) noong isang taon, umabot sa 11,000 ang ghost employees ng lokal na pamahalaan ng Davao City sa ilalim ng termino ni Duterte bilang mayor, kung saan nakatanggap ng P708 milyon kada isang taon.
“Dito natin makikita ‘yung hypocrisy ni Mayor Duterte, na ‘yung sinasabi niya contractualization must stop… Pero kita niyo dito, ilang years na, 13 years na ‘yung mga contractuals niya, pero hindi nag-e-exist,” sabi ni Trillanes.
Idinagdag ni Trillanes na napunta umano ang pondo sa bulsa ni Duterte.
“Ito ‘yung nasa payroll binabayaran ng Davao City na napupunta sa bulsa ni Mayor Duterte na nakita natin sa kanyang mga bank accounts,” sabi ni Trillanes.
Sinabi pa ni Trillanes na walang mga job descripton ang umano’y mga ghost employees.
“Dito sa COA report ang sinasabi ng COA walang job description, mga pangalan lang. Sa sobrang nagkaroon ng culture of impunity sa Davao City dahil kaya nilang busalan lahat, brazen na yung kanilang paggawa ng anomalya,” ayon pa kay Trillanes.
Idinagdag ni Trillanes na umaasa siyang ikokonsidera ng mga botante ang kanilang pagsuporta kay Duterte.
“Mayor Duterte is a fraud. Isa siyang kurakot. Sana nga may oras pa para magbukas ang kanilang isipan (He is corrupt. If only there is still time for them to open their minds),” sabi pa ni Trillanes.
Nauna nang ibinunyag ni Trillanes ang mga lihim na bank account ni Duterte.
“Sana maliwanagan na ‘yung nga kababayan natin… Ang talo dito yung mga taga Davao. Pondo n’yo ito na napupunta sa bulsa ni Mayor Duterte,” sabi pa ni Trillanes.
Sinabi ni Trillanes na may kabuuang 17joint account si Duterte at anak na si Sara sa Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) branch sa Julia Vargas Avenue in Pasig City, BPI Edsa Greenhills, at Banco de Oro Unibank sa Mandaluyong City na kung saan umabot sa P2.4 bilyon ang transaksyon mula 2006 hanggang 2015.

Trillanes hits Duterte supporters for 'hypocrisy' over ad featuring kids

MANILA, Philippines - Vice presidential aspirant Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV on Friday slammed supporters of presidential frontrunner Rodrigo Duterte who cried foul over a negative television advertisement  featuring children criticizing the Davao City mayor.
"'Dutertards' are suddenly concerned about children? Yet every time Duterte cusses and jokes about his penis and rape not realizing children are listening, too? Such hypocrisy, right?" said Trillanes on his Facebook account, adding that laws were "strictly followed" in the production of the video.
The video, which used select controversial quotes from Duterte, included children who were asking the electorate not to vote for the trash-talking mayor on May 9.
It was the latest in a slew of attacks against Duterte in the last few days leading to election day. Based on the latest survey results, Duterte is leading the candidates for the presidency.
"The truth definitely hurts. The children were purposely used to hammer the message that they should always be part of the consideration in our choice of leaders of the country not only because it is for their future but also because they will emulate these leaders," Trillanes said.

Philippine Election: Duterte’s Dangerous Ideas on China

Rodrigo Duterte wants bilateral South China Sea talks with China. This is a very bad idea.

On May 9, 2016, the Philippines will hold its presidential election. The leading candidate, 71-year-old Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, gives international observers many reasons to be worried about what kind of president he would be if the polls hold through election day. Duterte famously joked about a woman who was a victim of a gang rape in his home city, saying he thought she was so attractive he only wished he’d raped her first. Duterte’s main legacy as Davao mayor was his open support for vigilante death squads that have killed over 1,000 people.  The death squads’ stated purpose is to eliminate criminals but they have reportedly killed 132 children in Davao. Duterte argues the death squads have reduced petty crime but he ignores the fact that their actions caused the murder rate to soar.
But Duterte’s views on women and his promise to bring his violent brand of criminal justice to the whole country are not the only reasons to worry about the possibility of Duterte as president of the Philippines. His foreign policy gives nearly as much cause for concern. Duterte has demonstrated during his career that he is tragically naïve about China’s intentions in the western Pacific.
Duterte’s position on China’s maritime activity is to hold bilateral talks with China on the subject if the current strategy of litigating the Philippines’ dispute with China and seeking a multilateral resolution does not produce results within two years.  This approach is both naïve and self-defeating.
Traditionally, China’s neighbors have tried to deal diplomatically with China in multilateral forums. Because China has been for most of its history so much larger and so much more powerful than any of its neighbors, China’s neighbors have had a hard time protecting their interests negotiating with China one-on-one. China has typically pressed for bilateral engagement while its neighbors have tried to insist on multilateral forums. In the South China Sea, for example, Beijing has predictably requested bilateral negotiations with the various claimants.
Duterte’s proposal of bilateral talks plays right into China’s hands. Once the Chinese have the Philippines in a bilateral negotiation, Beijing will have gained a huge advantage because Manila lacks the hard or soft power to effectively press its claims alone. The Philippines needs to work in concert with other claimants, like Vietnam and Malaysia, to counter China’s activities. The current Philippine strategy of litigating its claims at The Hague has the support of Vietnam and Malaysia, but they will only back the Philippines so long as Manila’s strategy is aimed at pushing back against China. The moment Duterte enters bilateral talks with China, the Philippines will be undercutting Vietnam and Malaysia and the unified diplomatic front will crumble. Duterte seems oblivious to this.
Additionally, Duterte’s prescription of giving the current strategy of lawfare two years to produce results all but ensures that the strategy will fail. Under the current Philippine approach, Manila’s challenge to Chinese occupation of maritime features has the support of all the other claimants to the islands of the South China Sea. Under Duterte’s approach, Beijing would know that it only had to wait two years before the Philippines’ would break up this unified front and put itself right where China wants it: In a bilateral negotiation where China has the advantage.
Duterte’s recent promise that he would “shut up” about Philippine claims in the South China Sea if the Chinese would pay to build a train around Mindanao and another between Manila and Bicol show that Duterte’s grasp of the military situation may be just as weak as his grasp of diplomacy. Whatever the value of expanded investment in railways might be to the Philippines, they do not outweigh the cost of ceding control of the Spratly Islands to China. If China were to consolidate its holdings in the Spratlys it would be able to easily project power against the Philippines and could secure military dominance in the South China Sea against all challengers. China would be able to create a new reality on the ground that would supersede anything in international law.
Duterte’s proposal shows a lack of sophistication in how to be effective in diplomacy, and in diplomacy with China in particular. His approach would essentially play right into China’s hands and ensure the Philippines was negotiating from a position of maximum weakness while ignoring the military risks of ceding contested maritime features to China.

Abby Binay flaunts survey lead; Peña cites Poe, Duterte endorsement

With four days to go before Election Day, the camp of Makati City Rep. Abigail “Abby” Binay said she remained confident of victory in the mayoralty race, citing an “internal survey” showing that 70 percent of the city residents still prefer her over main rival and current mayor, Romulo “Kid” Peña.
Binay’s spokesperson Joey Salgado said the majority of the respondents still wanted a Binay to lead Makati due to Peña’s “bad governance.” He declined to give other details about the survey, saying only that it was commissioned by a private company.
Salgado also claimed that some department heads appointed by Peña after he took over nine months ago had recently taken five-month study leaves. The officials did it apparently to “prepare for the takeover of Binay,” he told the Inquirer on Thursday.
He identified them as Ramilia Cruzado of the City Administration office, City Secretary Ariel Labra, City Engineer Waldemar Dabuet, City Budget Officer Aileen Soriano, and Department of Environmental Services head Danny Villas.
Binay earlier criticized Peña for avoiding forums where they were supposed to present their platforms, as she also vowed to review the programs Peña had implemented to check whether those were “legitimate.”
But Peña’s camp belied Salgado’s statement about the key officials going on leave. “We categorically deny their statement. Only Villas filed for a study leave. They also cannot provide necessary documents to prove that claim,” City Hall’s information officer Gibo Delos Reyes said when sought for comment.
According to Delos Reyes, Peña’s own source of confidence is “the trust of the people” which he has earned since replacing Mayor Junjun Binay, Abby’s younger brother.
Delos Reyes also noted that Peña recently earned the endorsement of two presidential candidates, the survey-topping Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte and Sen. Grace Poe. Abby and Junjun’s father, Vice President Jejomar Binay, is also running for president.
“Mayor ‘Kid’ Peña expressed his gratitude to Mayor Duterte and Sen. Poe for their support to his campaign and his Bagong Makati (New Makati) advocacy,” Delos Reyes said.
But the official clarified that Peña’s “support remains with (administration candidate Mar) Roxas and the Liberal Party ticket, being a stalwart of this political party.”
The public information office is expected to release today the results of “a house-to-house survey” on the Makati residents’ choice for next mayor. The survey covered about 9,000 households, Delos Reyes said.
Peña, the elected vice mayor in the 2013 polls, was in the line of succession when Junjun was suspended and later dismissed by the Office of the Ombudsman due to the corruption charges filed against him.
Junjun’s removal ended his family’s hold on the top City Hall post, which began 30 years ago when his father was appointed officer-in-charge of the city after the Edsa People Power Revolution.

Wealth Check: RODRIGO DUTERTE

IN HIS latest SALN for the year 2015, presidential frontrunner and Davao City Mayor Rodrigo R. Duterte declared a net worth for 2015 of only P23,514,569.93, or a slight P1.54-million increase in his declared net worth in 2014.
Duterte’s cash on hand/in bank, according to his latest SALN, was just P14,839,69.93, as of Dec. 31, 2015.
The earliest SALN Duterte had filed that is on PCIJ’s archives is for the year 1997, in which he declared a net worth of only P897,792.
In an earlier report this week on Duterte’s SALNs, PCIJ had noted, among other things, that Duterte’s net worth and “cash on hand/in bank” have charted an upward trek in the last two decades, save for one year.
But recent press interviews with Duterte have revealed a few more details previously unknown about his wealth, or which do not seem to be included in his SALN filings.
For one, Duterte told reporters last week that he has a dollar savings account with “about $5,000,” money that he said he had saved from an overseas trip he took many years ago. No dollar values in his “cash on hand/in bank” had ever been enrolled in Duterte’s SALNs.
For another, Duterte this week appeared in the late night TV program of his long-time friend and now ardent campaign supporter, Pastor Apollo Quiboloy. During the program, Duterte said Quiboloy, founder of The Kingdom of God, had given him three properties and two cars while he was mayor of Davao City.
“When I was mayor, Pastor bought three properties,” said Duterte. “He said, ‘I will buy properties for your children because if anything happens to you because of your work, if you die….'”
He said Quiboloy had also given him a Nissan Safari and a Ford Expedition.
The properties that Quiboloy had bought for him included, according to Duterte, a house and lot at Woodridge Park in Ma-a, Davao City, and another house and lot at Royal Pines Subdivision in Matina, Davao City.
Duterte did not specify the year – or years – when he became a beneficiary of Quiboloy’s generosity.
No Nissan Safari or Ford Expedition appears in Duterte’s latest SALN, although he listed a Nissan Patrol in his 2011 SALN. In his 2015 SALN, Duterte declared owning only two vehicles: a Toyota RAV 4 and a “Volks Sedan.” Duterte, however, had also listed “cars/motorcycles” in various SALN filings through the years, with total values that ranged from P1.2 million to P2.75 million.
Meanwhile, in his 2015 SALN, Duterte listed as his personal properties three lots in Bagong Aplaya, Davao City that he said he purchased between 1995 and 1997. But a second list of “other assets and personal properties, including those of the spouse and children below 18 years old,” Duterte enrolled a lot in Ma-a and a house and lot in Matina among other assets. He said he purchased the two properties in 1997-98.
Yet still on another page of his 2015 SALN, Duterte listed a third set of real properties that he noted were “purchased through the exclusive funds of (the mother of his 11-year-old daughter), Cielito S. Avancena.”
This third set of properties includes three lots — two agricultural and one residential — located in Matina, Malagos, and Catigan, all in Davao City; and two house and lots in Matina; Davao City.
Duterte valued this final set of real properties at P3.08 million, by acquisition cost.
A Ma-a residential lot first appeared in Duterte’s SALN in 1998, then in 1999, 2000, 2002, 2004, and 2005.

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Business interests: Jejomar Binay, Rodrigo Duterte

GMA News Research looked into the business interests of the presidential candidates and their immediate family based on the candidates’ own declarations in their Statements of Assets, Liabilities and Networth (SALN) and the businesses they registered at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Official records show that businesses of the members of the families of two presidential candidates transacted with the city government headed at that time by the candidate.
Vice President Jejomar Binay and Davao City mayor Rodrigo Duterte, both with more than two decades of local government rule, have apparently approved transactions with businesses owned by family.
“May conflict of interest pag titingnan natin na bakit nila bibigyan yung kamag-anak nila,” said Dean Maria Fe Mendoza of the  University of the Philippines National College of Public Administration and Governance.
“Kasi baka naman may... legitimate application. And yung pagkuha ng mayor's permit, may proseso siya. Ngayon, ang mayor ay noted na lang,” Dean Mendoza added.
While the authority to issue the permit lies on the local chief executive, Mendoza puts an emphasis on the process. “Sa business permit, kailangan mo ang barangay clearance, kailangan mo ang fire (safety inspection certificate), kailangan mo ng sanitary (permit)... So maraming mga layers na pagdaraanan... ,” Mendoza said.
The dean, however, did not dismiss the possibility that being related to the mayor may have an effect on the process.
Said Mendoza, “Maaaring mangyari yon lalo na sa kultura natin na. ‘Ay si mayor pala, yung asawa pala o yung anak’. So parang meron kang hiya kasi culturally, parang you look up to the mayor as the head of the local government unit. So talagang baka may hiya factor. ...  you just gave in and gave the (barangay) clearance right away. ”
Duterte businesses
In Davao City, at least six companies registered with the SEC under the names of Duterte’s children—Sebastian, Davao City Vice Mayor Paolo and former mayor Sara -- have secured business permits for this year from the Davao City Hall.
Davao City Mayor Duterte has been the mayor of the City for 22 years, from 1988 to 1998, in 2001 to 2010 and from 2013 to present.
All the six companies of the Duterte siblings are engaged in the food business. The declared primary purposes in their respective Articles of Incorporations were to “establish and maintain restaurants, coffee shops”, among others and to “make, cook, arrange, serve and cater food.”

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Big Brother Canada 4 - Episode 29 - 12th Eviction Night

Here's how they voted:
Tim voted to evict Joel
Nick/Phil voted to evict Joel

By a vote of 2 to 0 Joel is the 12th Houseguest to be evicted in the Big Brother Canada House and is the 6th Jury Member.

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Philippines Duterte: Winner Despite Anti-Elite Tussles?

Controversial presidential candidate and Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte remains the favorite to win the 9 May presidential election.

The iShares MSCI Philippines Exchange-traded fund (EPHE) is down 2.3% this week, and is up about 1.4% this year. But over 12 months, it is down 15%, while the iShares MSCI Emerging Market ETF (EEM) is down nearly 23% over the past year.
Teneo Intelligence Analyst Bob Herrera-Lim notes that a survey released early Wednesday in Manila, based on info gathered in April, shows Duterte with 33% voter support (unchanged), followed by administration candidate Mar Roxas with 22% (up 2 percentage points), Senator Grace Poe with 21% (down 1 percentage point), Vice President Jejomar Binay with 17% (down 1 point) and Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago with 2% (unchanged). Herrera-Lim adds:
“The newest data is likely to unnerve investors even more. In an opinion piece published this week, the chairman of the Makati Business Club, the most influential business group in the country, argued against his election [Davao Mayor Duterte]. The mayor met with the group last week and gave a rambling, profanity-laced speech, which left them unimpressed. Makati Business Club was heavily involved in the political movement to oust two previous presidents: Ferdinand Marcos in 1986 and Joseph Estrada in 2001.
While Duterte is still unlikely to change macroeconomic policy in his term should he become president, his relationship with Manila’s business and economic elite appears more fraught …”
In a commentary in The Philippine Star, Boo Chanco claims sources “deep inside Duterte’s camp” say the Duterte rejected a contribution from a leading conglomerate, in part because he doesn’t like big donations from businesses heavily regulated by the government. Chanco points to the power brokering going on that makes the election look like an afterthought, and adds:
“There is no denying the movers and shakers of big business based in Metro Manila are nervous about Duterte’s increasingly commanding lead. They don’t know him that well. And the mayor had been saying a lot of worrisome things like ending contractualization and going after the telecom duopoly …”

Philippines election rattles credit markets as populist Rodrigo Duterte looks likely to win

SINGAPORE (IFR) - The Philippines' status as one of the best-performing sovereign credits in Asia could be at risk when the country elects a new president on Monday (May 9), after a campaign where the economy was almost an afterthought.
Rated Double B in 2010 when President Benigno Aquino took office, the country now enjoys investment-grade status (Baa2/BBB/BBB-) as he reaches the end of his six-year, non-renewable term.
The economy is growing at around 6.2 per cent, inflation fell to 1.5 per cent in the 2015 fiscal year, and the budget deficit has shrunk to around 1.0 per cent from 3.5 per cent in 2010.
Aquino is likely to be replaced by one of two populist candidates - Davao City mayor Rodrigo Duterte, who has championed extra-judicial killings and claims to have taken part in some, or senator Grace Poe, the adopted daughter of two film stars, who was initially ruled ineligible on the grounds of her length of residency in the Philippines.
Duterte was ahead of Poe in the latest opinion polls, causing concern to some investors.
"While both Poe and Duterte have a fairly populist platform that will see some deterioration in fiscal discipline, Poe will be preferred, despite her lack of experience, as she appears to be supported by a group of advisers who have helped her develop her 20-point platform," said Leong Lin Jing, investment manager at Aberdeen Asset Management.
"She is also seen to favour businesses, as such garnering the support of the San Miguel Group. Duterte, on the other hand, has given little concrete plans apart from his tough stance on crime and the need to build industries and factories.
"His recent comments have also spurred a backlash from the international community after he has declared he is willing to sever ties with the US and Australia."

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The many faces of boy-man Rodrigo Duterte

A lot of people may be wondering why I call Rodrigo Duterte a boy-man. The simple explanation is that Duterte has a body of a man but a mind and mouth of an obviously uneducated and ignorant boy – loving his filth and living in a quagmire of Malabanan residue. There cannot be any other explanation if you listen to the dirt that comes out of his mouth habitually and his daily behavior in public display.
If this boy-man Duterte were educated, I would be going for him for several reasons. First, he is purportedly from Mindanao and I, too, am a blue-blooded Mindanaoan. Second, even as a kid at the University of the Philippines, Diliman, I have long dreamed, as an act of justice for us in Mindanao, of a Mindanaoan presidency. Third, as editor-in-chief of the Philippine Collegian in UP, I have been an intense exponent of a federal and parliamentary system for the Philippines as the best possible system for Filipinos, so much so that when I was elected Opposition Provincial Governor of Misamis Oriental, Mindanao in 1980 during martial law, one of my best remembered slogans was Today Mindanao, Tomorrow the Philippines.
Fourth, possibly the best among the array of reasons why I should have come out supporting Duterte and as I have stated over and over again, the salvation of this country is not through elections but through a revolution – the euphemistic term of which is a constitutional transition government. But Duterte, like Cory Aquino, has no intelligent understanding of what is a revolutionary government except that, according to him, he would become a dictator if he gets elected.
But I am not for Duterte. Why? Because what comes out of his mouth habitually is an insult to human intelligence, a scandal for Filipinos, a total denigration of democracy and the human condition, and an absolute rejection of the basic value of the inviolable character of the human person, and an absolute denial of simple moral rules. It is not just filth in and from the mouth; it’s a confirmation of a sick mind and a diseased heart. That should be simple enough for a nincompoop to understand.
‘King Of Liars,’ says VP Binay of Duterte
VP Jojo did not amplify on his charge that Duterte is the “King of Liars.” This is understandable because during the second presidential debate in Cebu City, in full view of national television, Duterte and Binay endorsed each other for the presidency, shook each other’s hands and almost ended in a brotherly embrace. Their behavior is easily understandable because they are birds of a feather flocking together – as the examples of disgusting traditional politicians, always denying all possible accusations against them and when boxed into a corner lying through their teeth without any twinge of conscience. In effect, the charge of VP Binay against Duterte is correct. But Duterte is not the only “king of liars” as Binay can ably compete against Duterte for the crown.
Here are some of the glaring examples:
First, Duterte claims he comes from a poor family. This is a pathological lie because his father, Vicente Duterte, was governor of Davao when Davao was only one province and his mother was a schoolteacher who retired as supervisor, belonging to one of the elite families in our province. By any possible standard – Davao City or Cagayan de Oro City – Duterte cannot be considered coming from a poor family but from the elite.
Second, Duterte asserts that he has no money to mount a presidential campaign. Before his final decision to run for President, he told a crowd in Bonbon, Catarman, Camiguin that he had FIFTEEN BILLION PESOS worth of gold and he was in the process of converting them into cash. That’s how poor he is. If he were in the United States of America, he would be dubbed as Lying Digong, just like lying Ted, who Speaker John Boehner characterized as “Lucifer in the flesh.”
Third, Duterte is viewed by almost everyone who has heard of him long before he was candidate for President as the leader and organizer of the Death Squads of Davao (DSD) but despite overwhelming evidence he denies that he had something to do with DSD, yet when interviewed by media to explain the rationale behind the killing of 700 persons by the DSD, Duterte even boasted that the DSD killed no less than 1,700 – all summary killings, without due process. As an exclamation point to this Duterte boast, he even claimed before media that he did some of the killings himself and finally sealed by the recent statement of Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV that Duterte admitted to him that he killed even some of the boys who were begging for their lives.

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Self-confessed killer, 'the punisher,' shakes up Philippine race

In a year of global anti-establishment politics, Philippine voters appear ready for a renegade president: Self-confessed killer Rodrigo Duterte, a 71 year-old Viagra-chomping womanizer whose promise of a "bloody war" on crime has seen him race ahead in opinion polls.
Duterte has been mayor of Davao City on the southern island of Mindanao for two decades, where his strongman swagger and endorsement of the execution of criminals earned him the nicknames "Duterte Harry" and "The Punisher." He's been likened to U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump, using populist rhetoric to reach Filipinos who feel the mainstream political parties are out of touch.
"Duterte's main asset is that rightly or wrongly many people see him as having led a 'Filipino life,' with all the frustrations and hardships that entails," said Stephen Norris, senior Southeast Asia analyst at Control Risks in Singapore. "To voters, it's conceivable that he would actually make a difference on traffic, crime and corruption from the top down, because he has done so locally."
The leadership in the Philippines has for decades been the realm of powerful families whose main assets are their wealth and dynastic connections. But the latest Pulse Asia Research Inc. survey shows Duterte, whose father was a lawyer and mother a teacher, holding a double-digit lead over the other candidates, which would see him take the presidency under a first-past-the-post voting system.

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Rodrigo Duterte, the Filipino Donald Trump, favoured to win presidential race

The Philippines may be heading into a new era of strong-man rule if its general election Monday produces a win for presidential candidate Rodrigo Duterte, who has been dubbed the Filipino Donald Trump and earned an international reputation for his foul language and outrageous comments.
The 71-year-old is known for his unfiltered speeches, which have included insults against women and the Pope, whom Duterte called a "son of a whore" for holding up traffic in Manila on a recent visit.

He is a former state prosecutor, and his tough-on-crime position is so tough that he has been accused of running death squads in the southern city of Davao, where he has been mayor for over 20 years.
The squads are thought to be a kind of vigilante group that takes justice into its own hands and has killed more than 1,000 people, according to Human Rights Watch.
Instead of the death squads being a problem for Duterte, however, "they are a political platform," wrote Phelim Kine, the deputy director of HRW's Asia division, in an article last summer.

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Duterte keeps huge lead

Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte has brushed off controversies over an alleged hidden wealth and a rape joke to keep a huge lead going into the final days of the presidential election campaign, according to pollster Social Weather Stations (SWS).
The results of the last SWS preelection poll released Friday showed Duterte leading the race for Malacañang with voter support of 33 percent.

Trailing Duterte by 11 points was Sen. Grace Poe, with 22 percent, followed by Liberal Party (LP) standard-bearer Mar Roxas (20 percent), Vice President Jejomar Binay (13 percent) and Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago (2 percent).
Polled were 4,500 registered voters and the results had a margin of error of plus-or-minus 1 percentage point.
In the vice presidential race, Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and Camarines Sur Rep. Leni Robredo remain statistically tied for the lead.

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