MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte is supportive of the total deployment ban in Kuwait imposed by labor officials following the death of an overseas household worker there, Malacañang said Friday. “The Palace wishes to inform the public that President Duterte has approved the recommendation of Labor and Employment Secretary Silvestre Bello III on the total deployment ban of Filipino workers in Kuwait,” Palace spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a statement. ADVERTISEMENTThe deployment ban was imposed following the death of Filipino overseas worker Jeanelyn Villavende who was tortured and sexually abused by her employers. Panelo earlier said the ban would remain until Kuwait honors the labor agreement that ensures the protection of Filipinos working there. The deployment ban would cover all “newly-hired domestic workers or household service workers, semi-skilled workers, skilled workers and professionals, including crew changes and shore leaves of Filipino seafarers” in Kuwait.
January 17, 2020 11:37 UTC
MANILA, Philippines — Two Filipinas, who were victims of human trafficking to Iraq, arrived in the Philippines on Friday, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said. “DFA Office of the Undersecretary for Migrant Workers Affairs welcomes home two more Filipinos from Baghdad, Iraq, this afternoon. Both are victims of human trafficking,” DFA spokesperson Assistant Secretary Eduardo Menez said. READ: PH orders mandatory repatriation of Filipinos in IraqDFA declared Alert Level 4 on Iraq due to escalating tensions in the Middle East. For this, Filipinos in Iraq were urged to coordinate with the embassy as well as their respective employers for their immediate repatriation.
January 17, 2020 11:15 UTC
“That just shows that even while they say they want to be friends with us, they are putting pressure on our BRP Sierra Madre in Ayungin Shoal. ADVERTISEMENTBRP Sierra Madre refers to the marooned transport ship that serves as a detachment of the Philippine Navy. The presence of CCG 5402 near Ayungin Shoal was also confirmed by the military. “It’s incongruous that our brave soldiers in BRP Sierra Madre are being pressured, they are being intimidated while we are giving them a red carpet here. Delfin Lorenzana said the presence of CCG ship near Ayungin Shoal was not unusual.
January 17, 2020 10:41 UTC
Gretchen Barreto’s only child Dominique Cojuangco graduated with flying colors from the respected Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising based in California in the United States. “My baby love,” reads the proud mother’s Instagram post, with a screengrab of the degree originally posted on Dominique’s Instagram story. My baby love @dominique ???????? 56.4k Likes, 19 Comments - Gretchen Barretto (@gretchenbarretto) on Instagram: "My baby love @dominique ????????" La Greta’s unica hija earned the Associate of Arts degree in Merchandising and Marketing in late September, but posted about the good news just recently.
January 17, 2020 10:07 UTC
MANILA, Philippines – Angelo Que parred the last three holes early on Friday to complete a first round 70 then shot a four-under 67 to move within three shots off halfway clubhouse leader Matt Kuchar of the US in the Singapore Open at Sentosa’s Serapong course. Que got going after five pars, including three to wrap up his opening round stint, and a bogey on No. 3 as he gunned down four birdies in the next five, including three straight from No. Tabuena, who sizzled in an early start Thursday, also looked good with two birdies after eight holes in the second round although conditions are expected to get tougher in afternoon play. “I’m glad that it was another good round and I’m in a good position for the weekend.”
January 17, 2020 09:45 UTC
MANILA, Philippines — An illegal cigarette factory allegedly run by Chinese nationals was raided on Thursday by joint operatives from the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), the National Bureau of Investigation and the Philippine National Police. BIR Revenue Officer Remedios Advincula Jr. said operatives found a total of six manufacturing machines with one maker and one packer line. ADVERTISEMENTIt was also found out that residents from Buhi, Camarines Sur and Bulan, Sorsogon were recruited to work in the firm being operated by Chinese nationals. The Chinese nationals allegedly served as the machine operators and supervisors while the Filipino workers were assigned to package and warehouse the finished products. The factory supposedly manufactured illegal cigarettes with fake brands.
January 17, 2020 09:22 UTC
PARANG, Maguindanao –– Acting on a tip from concerned citizens, police arrested 11 persons during a law enforcement operation against a suspected drug den in the village of Bongo Island here on Thursday. Colonel Ibrahim Jambiran, Parang town police chief, said his office has received information about the existence of a drug den managed by the couple Uyag and Norie Kutungan in Barangay Litayen in Bongo island. “They were caught in the act of holding a pot session inside the house of Kutungan,” Jambiran said of the arrested suspects. Kutungan’s wife, who co-managed the drug den, escaped during the operation, Jambiran said. Seized from them were four huge sachets of shabu and drug paraphernalia.
January 17, 2020 09:11 UTC
MANILA, Philippines — Police rescued 19 women in two separate operations from establishments that are allegedly being used as prostitution dens in Makati City on Thursday night, a report showed on Friday. According to a report from Col. Rogelio Simon, Makati City police chief, elements of the Makati Investigation Division and Management Branch rescued 12 women from a bar along Bautista Street corner Casino Street in Barangay Palanan at 10:50 p.m.ADVERTISEMENTPhoto from Makati police stationPolice also arrested a certain Serges Borlas, 50, who is the alleged maintainer of the bar, after an undercover police officer posed as a customer at the establishment. In a separate rescue operation, police apprehended Junyen Barrios, 42, and Gella Winston, 47, an establishment along Emilia Street in Barangay Palanan at 11:30 p.m. Police also rescued seven women in the operation. Photo from Makati police stationThe arrested suspects are now detained at Makati City police station while charges for violation of Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act and Rescue Operation are being prepared against them.
January 17, 2020 08:37 UTC
An erupting Philippine volcano remains life threatening despite weaker emissions and fewer tremors, an official said today and advised thousands of displaced villagers not to return to the danger zone. The Taal volcano emitted weaker ash and steam explosions yesterday and today, the sixth day of its eruption. "When there is an explosion, that will be life threatening, especially if people get very near, like on Volcano Island,'' Renato Solidum, head of the the institute, told The Associated Press. The volcano since Sunday has remained at alert level 4, the second-highest warning, indicating a hazardous explosive eruption is possible in hours or days. Police have allowed batches of residents to check their homes for a few hours during the day in some high-risk villages.
January 17, 2020 08:15 UTC
MANILA, Philippines — A stop-and-go traffic scheme will be implemented on several roads in Manila on January 18 to 19 to make way for the celebration of the Sto. Niño de Tondo Fiesta 2020. Fiesta Solemn Procession (Jan. 19 4 a.m.)The route starts at Sto. Niño Church to Lakandula St., right to Asuncion St., right to Morga St., left to Juan Luna St., U-Turn Pritil, N. Zamora St. (Sande), right to Herbosa St., left to Franco St., right to Coral St., right to Sta. Maria/Yangco, left to Herbosa St., left to Velasquez St., left to Perla St., right to Sta.
January 17, 2020 08:15 UTC
MANILA, Philippines — Police have arrested a male adolescent in Rizal province for allegedly posing as the kidnapper of a missing child to extort cash from her mother. Gen. Jonnel Estomo, director of the Philippine National Police-Anti-Kidnapping Group (PNP-AKG), merely identified him as alias Rowel. Grefelda agreed to send the cash through an express remittance outlet but at the same time reported the suspect to the police. The suspect yielded a caliber .45 replica and a folding pocketknife or balisong during the arrest, according to Estomo. Police also said Rowel is being held at PNP-AKG’s headquarters in Camp Crame, Quezon City, and that the child remains missing as of posting time.
January 17, 2020 08:15 UTC
Bras not recommended as makeshift face mask, DOH chief saysMANILA, Philippines — Health Secretary Francisco Duque clarified that using bra as an alternative to face mask is not recommended by the Department of Health, contrary to an earlier suggestion of a health assistant secretary. According to a Thursday television report of GMA News’ Unang Balita, Duque said that bra is not enough to be utilized as a face mask during ashfall because it is not “porous” or is not enough for breathing. Duque also said the previous suggestion to use bra as face masks is just an opinion of one of the Health assistant secretaries. Early this week, reports quoted Health Assistant Secretary Maria Francia Laxamana as saying that bra, panty and diapers are among the recommended makeshift masks. “Meron pong isang creative, 'yung bra, panty.
January 17, 2020 08:03 UTC
KYIV, Ukraine — Ukraine’s prime minister says he has submitted his resignation, days after he was caught on tape saying the country’s president knows nothing about the economy. In a Facebook post Friday, Oleksiy Honcharuk said that he has given his resignation to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy. He is an example of transparency and decency to me,” he said. “However, in order to dispel any doubts about our respect and trust for the president, I have written a resignation letter and submitted it to the president for introduction to parliament,” Honcharuk’s statement read. Earlier this week an audio recording surfaced in which Honcharuk appeared to make disparaging comments about Zelenskiy’s understanding of economics.
January 17, 2020 08:03 UTC
ADVERTISEMENT“‘Yung portalets kasi ang mahal e. Medyo, it’s quite prohibitive but we are appealing for, even the private sector to also send portalets,” he added. “We appeal to them (private sector ), in the spirit of bayanihan and corporate social responsibility of the very progressive private sector entities, it’s a good time to share their resources,” Duque said. While there are toilets in schools that serve as evacuation centers, Duque said the DOH is still eyeing to build more latrines for the evacuees. Alert Level 4 remains hoisted over Taal Volcano which spewed ashes last Sunday, forcing thousands of families to evacuate and suspend classes in the affected areas. Inquirer calls for support for the victims of Taal volcano eruption Responding to appeals for help, the Inquirer is extending its relief to the families affected by the recent eruption of Taal volcano.
January 17, 2020 08:03 UTC
MANILA, Philippines — The unprecedented fire crisis that hit Australia—an example of the catastrophic impacts of climate change—should compel the Philippine government to scale up its climate action and phase out fossil fuels, environmental advocates said Friday. The Philippines is not at risk of large scale forest fires like the case in Australia, Martinez said. Global warming, however, could increase the occurrences of small forest fires. Martinez urged the government to look beyond the short-term benefits of fossil fuels on economic development. “It is not just the economic production supported by this power generation that needs to be examined, but also the impacts on us.
January 17, 2020 07:52 UTC