THE House of Representatives on Monday approved on third and final reading House Bill 3784, which grants Filipino citizenship to Brooklyn Nets center Andray Blatche.
Two hundred sixteen lawmakers voted for the naturalization of the six-foot-11 Blatche, who is a nine-year veteran in the National Basketball Association (NBA), to boost the preparation of the SMART-Gilas Pilipinas for the upcoming basketball world cup in Spain this coming August.
THE House independent minority bloc on Monday called for the return to manual voting amid several reported glitches the Precinct Count Optical Scanner (PCOS) machines encountered during the 2010 and 2013 polls.
Leyte Representative Ferdinand Martin Romualdez said that their group will call for an immediate House investigation into the discovery of vertical lines on ballots used in last year's mid-term elections.
ELEVEN people were killed while 11 others were injured in a series of attacks by members of the New People's Army (NPA), which lasted for more than half a day in Davao del Sur on Monday, said an army official.
In a phone interview, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) 10th Infantry Division spokesperson Captain Ernest Carolina said at 4:30 a.m. of Monday, around 100 members of the NPA conducted an attack in Matanao Davao del Sur police station where two policemen were killed while three others were wounded.
THE Commission on Elections (Comelec) is pushing for an amendment in the vote canvassing system to expedite the proclamation of winning national candidates.
“This is not to say that the automated election system has achieved maturity. There is yet work to be done on improving the legal framework of elections. The Comelec recommends that a comprehensive review of Republic Act 9369 be undertaken to revisit the multi-tiered canvassing system,” said the Comelec in its “Report to Congress on the Conduct of the 2013 National and Local Elections.”
THE Quezon City Council approved a proposed ordinance mandating event organizers to use the phrase "LIVE in Quezon City" instead of "Live in Manila" in promoting events within its city.
The new law, which is awaiting for the signature of Mayor Herbert Bautista, will require event producers to use the phrase "Live in Quezon City" in promotional materials like posters and billboards, among others, whenever an event will be held in the Araneta Coliseum or in any other venue in the city.
SENATE President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto said Saturday that it is high time for the country to adjust individual tax brackets and rates to reflect the inflationary effects since 1997 when the present tax brackets were imposed.
Recto said that when the present individual tax brackets and rates were imposed in 1997, the cost of goods was half than what it is now.
A RESOLUTION was recently filed at the House the Representatives seeking to increase the current daily allowances of armed service personnel such as in the military, police and coast guard to provide them with decent living and adequate compensation.
MALACANANG on Friday confirmed the Justice department is already studying the possibility of Janet Lim-Napoles, alleged pork barrel scam queen, being transferred to a regular jail if the court makes such an order.
Earlier, Senator Francis Escudero has been calling for Napoles transfer to an ordinary jail since the government could not extract any substantial information from her that could shed light to the pork barrel scam. Napoles is accused of masterminding the multi-billion peso scam.
SENATOR Aquilino Pimentel III on Friday asked President Benigno Aquino III to transfer supervision of the Mindanao Railway Project Office (MRPO) from the Land Transportation and Franchising Regulatory Board (LTFRB) to the Philippine National Railways (PNR).
Pimentel, representing various Mindanao leaders, said PNR has the technical know how to implement the project, a network of lines linking Cagayan de Oro to the cities of Iligan and Zamboanga, the provinces of Agusan and Surigao and the cities of Davao and General Santos.
SENATOR Teofisto Guingona III refused to make conclusions on the testimony of Technology Resource Center (TRC) director general Dennis Cunanan who appeared before his committee this week.
"We will have to review it (testimony), evaluate and scrutinize it. We will have to compare it with the testimonies of other witnesses... We will also have to take into account the demeanor of Dennis Cunanan. Then after we evaluate all of that, can we only come into a conclusion," Guingona told reporters.
A TOTAL of 35 wanted individuals were nabbed by the Philippine National Police (PNP) in a week, an official said Friday.
From March 1 to 7, PNP-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG) director chief Superintendent Benjamin Magalong said their tracker teams nationwide were able to arrest 35 wanted personalities.
AS METRO Manila girds for traffic with the simultaneous implementation of 17 road projects, Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto batted for the tapping of underutilized mass transport systems, like the PNR and the mothballed Pasig River ferry, to ease the commuting woes of the metropolis' 13 million residents.
Recto said that doubling the number of PNR trains plying the 44-kilometer Tutuban, Manila-Sta. Rosa Laguna line alone will allow it to ferry 25 million more passengers a year.
IN AN attempt to decongest the country's cramped jails and other detention facilities, a lawmaker recently filed a measure that will imposed a mandatory community service instead of imprisonment for some non-serious offenses.
Las Piñas City Representative Mark Villar said that House Bill 3903 provides rendition of community service in lieu of detention for prisoners who are serving sentences ranging from one day to six months and those with six months or less remaining to serve.
THE voting public should reject politicians who allegedly benefited from the pork barrel scam come 2016 when they seek reelection, Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago said Friday.
"We should not re-elect any senators or congressmen running for reelection in 2016, if they are among those against whom the Ombudsman will file criminal charges for plunder or malversation of public funds in the Sandiganbayan," the senator said.
VICE President Jejomar Binay said the Association of Southeast Nations (Asean) should take a "solid stand" on the member-nations' territorial disputes with China.
Binay made the observation to Vietnamese Ambassador to the Philippines Truong Trieu Duong during the latter's call on the Vice President at the Coconut Palace Tuesday.
AN OPPOSITION lawmaker on Thursday assured the public that allies of Vice President Jejomar Binay who were involve in the controversial pork barrel scam will be brought to justice if proven guilty once the former Makati City mayor is elected President in the 2016 national polls.
United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) secretary general Toby Tiangco said that a Binay leadership will pursue cases against those involved in the pork-barrel scam and will not hesitate to send even allies to jail.
AROUND 60 to 70 percent of more than 1.7 million registered firearms were under suspicious owners and addresses, an official said Thursday.
In an interview, Philippine National Police Firearms and Explosive Office (PNP-FEO) director Chief Superintendent Louie Oppus said they temporarily closed all satellite offices (SATO) of firearms license renewal to purge the whole system.
A FORMER vice mayor who was accused of sexual assaulting a beauty pageant contestant was arrested by the authorities on Wednesday, a police official said.
THE House leadership on Thursday dismissed the allegations that businessman Manuel V. Pangilinan (MVP) and his Metro Pacific Investments Corporation are the primary beneficiaries of the proposed changes to the economic provisions of the 1987 Constitution.
"I don't really see why he (Pangilinan) should be singled out and say dito makikinabang siya. I foresee maraming mag-ooppose sa Cha-cha (Charter change). In fact, ang mga businessmen na nag-aagree. If you already owned so much why is it matter whether may papasok na konti rito o wala," Belmonte said.
A TRAINER plane crashed in Nueva Ecija Thursday morning after its pilot allegedly showed-off his daredevil moves to his girlfriend.
In a phone interview, Glen Paraiso, owner of the house where the plane crashed said he was in the family's kitchen when the incident happened around 8 a.m.
SENATOR Juan Edgardo "Sonny" Angara has filed a bill that seeks to reduce the rates of individual income tax and adjust the individual income tax brackets in order to ease Filipinos' financial burden,
"Karamihan sa ating mga kababayan ay lugmok sa kahirapan. 30 to 40 percent are living below the poverty line. We must do everything we can to help them and I think this is one way we can look at," said Angara, chairperson of the Senate committee on ways and means.
SENATOR Francis Chiz Escudero, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, filed Senate Bill 16, which seeks the mandatory signing of bank waivers to make public the financial records of all government officials and those seeking public office.
Escudero filed the bill in support of calls by his colleagues in the Senate for a lifestyle check after some senators have been implicated in the multibillion pork barrel controversy.
SENATE Majority Leader Alan Peter Cayetano on Wednesday challenged Vice President Jejomar Binay to show moral toughness and issue a definitive statement on the alleged participation of his closest political allies in the pork barrel scams, as he confirmed that he will be running for the presidency.
Cayetano said that it is his desire to serve God and his country.
A MAN wanted for the murder of a Boracay tribe spokesperson is now behind bars after he was arrested by the authorities on Monday, a police official said in a belated report Wednesday.
Suspect Daniel Celestino was arrested by combined forces of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and Presidential Anti-Organized Crime Commission (PAOCC) in his hideout owned by his mother in Barangay Palasan, Sta. Cruz, Laguna.
HOUSE Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. recommended the giving of committee assignments to Pampanga Representative Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and eight other members of the independent minority bloc.
Arroyo, a former president who is now under hospital arrest for plunder charges, is expected to be assigned as member of the committees on energy and on trade and industry. Her membership is expected to be read in the plenary within the week.
THE minority bloc in the House of Representatives on Wednesday vowed to question every move of the administration lawmakers once the proposed amendments on the economic provisions of the 1987 Constitution reaches the plenary debate.
House Minority Leader Ronaldo Zamora said that it is not easy to get the much needed three-fourth votes because some members of the majority had already said their piece that they support Constitutional Convention and not anything else.
BUDGET Secretary Florencio Abad on Wednesday dismissed the allegations that Malacanang is behind the distribution of the so-called "hidden pork" to members of Congress who will vote in favor of amending the economic provisions of the 1987 Constitution.
In an ambush interview, Abad said there was no truth to the statements of militant lawmakers led by Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) Party-list Representative Antonio Tinio since the controversial Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) of the lawmakers has already been re-aligned to six government agencies.
THE military and police bishop on Ash Wednesday urged the Catholics faithful to feed the hungry in areas stricken by manmade and natural calamities as a form of sacrifice during the Lenten season.
FULL respect for Philippine sovereignty, non-permanence of United States (US) troops and no US basing in the Philippines was pushed by the negotiating panel in a dialogue with the American defense team, official said Wednesday.
A BILL was recently filed before the House of Representatives, which mandates doctors, midwives, and nurses to register the birth of a child within 30 days or face sanction of imprisonment.