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People's Journal

People's Journal

Federal system on Alvarez’s mind

AMID the budget deliberation and impeachment proceedings, the House of Representatives remains on track with its discussion on the proposed Charter Change, Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez assured the public, adding that the form of government will surely be changed under the Duterte administration.

The shift to a federal form of government is among the main campaign promises of Duterte.

“Patuloy po ang committee hearings niyan (federalism) since last year dito sa amin sa House of Representatives. Ang alam ko tapos na  sila sa committee hearings,” Alvarez said in an interview.

Alvarez said a group commissioned by the administration party PDP has also submitted to him their own draft of a federal constitution of the Philippines.

He said he had it reproduced and sent to the party’s members so they can study the proposed provisions.
Alvarez noted that President Duterte has created a 25-man commission to study and prepare a draft federal constitution.
“Siguro pagkatapos nun by first quarter next year, maybe we can agree to convene Congress into a constituent assembly and start deliberating on the proposed drafts of the constitution,” Alvarez stressed.
Alvarez said they will exert all efforts to ensure a new federal constitution is in place by the end of Duterte’s term in 2022.
“Well, talagang sisikapin natin dahil kung hindi yan napatupad sa administrasyon na ito wala na po sigurong pag-asa yan na maipatupad. Kasi kung titingnan ninyo sa lahat ng kumandidato pagka presidente tanging si President Duterte lang ang mayroong adbokasiya ng federalism,” the House leader said.

  • Published in Nation

Scalawag cops

ALTHOUGH there are scalawags in the Philippine National Police (PNP), the public still believes that the men and women in uniform are capable of regaining the people’s trust and confidence.

In fact, the current leadership of the PNP, headed by Director-General Ronald “Bato” M. dela Rosa, is seen to be sincere in its campaign to rid the 175,000-strong agency of “rotten eggs.”

Senator Loren Legarda, a former hard-hitting broadcast journalist, has stressed anew the need to address the issue of erring lawmen, who continue to tarnish the image of the national police force.

“Many of our cops are good people, but the few police scalawags stain the integrity of the entire organization,” said Legarda during a public hearing on the proposed budget of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).

The DILG supervises the PNP, which is civilian in nature but national in scope, the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) and the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP).

Dela Rosa, a member of Class l986 of the elite Philippine Military Academy (PMA), assured the lady senator that measures are being undertaken to address the problem of police scalawags.
Observers said that more than a year after he assumed the top political post of the land, President Duterte has not shown any sign of backing off from his commitment to hit hard at erring cops.    
Today, it appears very clear that the days of bribe-taking, abusive, lazy and 15-30 policemen are numbered.
Certainly, Legarda, chair of the powerful Senate Committee on Finance, and other members of Congress want an efficient and well-equipped police force to serve and protect our people and country.
It’s a gigantic task, but it is not an impossible mission as long as the Filipino people, now numbering more than 100 million, support the Duterte presidency and the PNP leadership.

  • Published in Newsdesk

Letting off steam

Now that both sides have spoken their minds for or against the Duterte administration, it is time to get back into the groove and move ahead.

Venting outrage and frustration over issues impacting the welfare of citizens is a healthy democratic exercise.

This we support with no equivocation or mental reservation: more free speech, peaceful assembly and marches, and other fundamental civil liberties.

They are a manifestation of an exuberant, rambunctious and vibrant democracy.

And so why where they shouting “Hitler, dictador, tuta!” in yesterday’s rallies and marches?

Isn’t it ironic to hear so much verbal abuse given a nearly limitless democratic space?
Thousands of President Duterte's critics and supporters held rival rallies Thursday, taking emotional national debates over his deadly drug war and martial-law threats to the streets.
Police in battle gear kept order as at least 8,000 protesters held a series of rallies across Manila, using the 45th anniversary of martial law to warn that Duterte was violent and authoritarian.
Supporters of Duterte also turned up in large numbers, reflecting his popularity with many Filipinos who see him as a charismatic, anti-establishment politician who is their best chance to quell crime and corruption.
Duterte vowed in last year's election campaign to eradicate illegal drugs in society by killing up to 100,000 traffickers and addicts.
Since he assumed office 15 months ago police have reported killing more than 3,800 people in anti-drug operations.
The crackdown has triggered wider violence with thousands of other people being murdered in unexplained circumstances that rights groups partly attribute to vigilante death squads.
Police said thousands of anti-Duterte protesters later gathered outside Malacañang presidential palace before moving to a Manila park for their final rally, which was attended by some 8,000 people.
The protesters were backed by the political opposition and leaders of the Catholic Church.
Many of the personalities and institutions in this camp are also identified with the bloodless "People Power" revolution in 1986.
A pro-Duterte rally attended by 16,000 people was held in front of a Catholic church just over a kilometre away, while about 3,000 supporters of the president also gathered near the presidential palace, police said.
They were entertained by local film and television stars gyrating to raunchy songs on a stage dominated by a large image of Duterte and the words "Let Change Continue", referencing his election campaign slogan "Change is Coming".

  • Published in Newsdesk

Atom joins GMA News and Public Affairs

BROADCAST journalist Atom Araullo returns to GMA7 to be part of the Network’s News and Public Affairs group, which is widely regarded as the most credible and most internationally-awarded broadcast news organization in the country.

Atom, who used to be part of the Kapuso Network’s primetime newscast 24 Oras via the segment ‘ATOMic Sports’, expressed his eagerness to be a Kapuso once again. “I’m very excited.  Ang dami kong gustong gawin, particularly in the realm of documentary production. I think this is a great place to do all of that,” he says.

GMA Network Chairman and CEO Atty. Felipe L. Gozon welcomed Atom on his homecoming. “Dahil kilala ang GMA7 sa paggawa ng world class at award-winning documentary and public affairs programs, kami ay nalulugod sa paglipat ni Atom Araullo para lalo s’yang mahasa sa pagiging magaling na broadcast journalist at documentarist among others,” Atty. Gozon said.

A graduate of Applied Physics from the University of the Philippines-Diliman, Atom was exposed to broadcasting at an early age. In the past decade, he has earned the trust of the viewing public and the respect of his colleagues through the news stories and documentaries he has helped produce.

His documentary on climate change for his previous network earned Atom a Bronze World Medal at the 2017 New York Festivals “World’s Best TV and Films”. During this same competition, GMA made history for winning three Gold World Medals and three finalist certificates.
Atom is currently an Advocate for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in the Philippines, a humanitarian organization mandated to lead the protection of refugees and internally displaced persons.  Atom has also completed shooting legendary director Mike de Leon’s upcoming film Citizen Jake, where he plays the lead role.
With his return to GMA, Atom is looking forward to doing more documentaries with the Network’s Public Affairs group. “Ano man ang mga gagawin ko rito will be the next stage of my career. Gusto kong mas marami pang mai-share sa mga tao tungkol sa aking mga paniniwala, at yung passion ko to do documentaries,” he shares.

  • Published in Showbiz
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