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THE mainstream media have been largely ignoring the campaign sorties of President-to-be Rodrigo Roa Duterte (unless he is cheated).

​Consequently, people have been resorting to social media (Facebook, YouTube, etc.) to see how he does whenever he goes to places in and outside Metro Manila.

The last one I saw was a video clip of his recent sortie to Gingoog City, Misamis Oriental, a Liberal Party stronghold. Ironically, it was reminiscent of Pope Francis’ visit to Manila last year. Aside from the adoring multitude, Digong was also riding a vehicle-pulled contraption that reminded me of the popemobile.

The crowds that received him wherever he went were obviously not the “hakot” type. He does not have the money to resort to that. They come in droves because they like him. They want him to be their next president. He is different from the three other “trapos” contesting the presidency. They know he is sincere in getting us out of the quagmire we are in.

So, why are the mainstream media ignoring him? The only reason I could think of is because these media outfits belong to the rich, the oligarchs, many of whom are Washington-worshippers and have puppets in government. They are averse to the idea of losing virtual control over the kind of domestic and foreign policies, both political and economic, that the government pursues. They want only policies that would serve their selfish ends and satisfy their greed.

It is also obvious that crime and drug syndicates have become a pervading menace and destructive influence on our national life. They, too, do not want Digong to be president.

But this time, they will be frustrated notwithstanding the administration party’s amateurish and desperate attempts to derail Digong’s inexorable march to victory. The Filipino people will triumphantly carry him to Malacañang come July 1… unless he is cheated, in which case, there might be hell to pay in this benighted land.

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Over 50,000 people have so far responded to the ongoing online survey being conducted by Rappler. The question asked is: “If elections were held today, who would you vote for president?”

The result of the survey as of March 26: Rody Duterte, 76.8%; Mar Roxas, 11.42%; Miriam Santiago, 5.31%; Grace Poe, 3.98%; Jojo Binay, 1.29; None of the choices, 1.2%.

Another bad news for Digong’s opponents… Billionaire Tony Tan Caktiong, who is from Davao and is the owner of the now world famous fast food chain Jollibee, has just declared his support for the Davao Mayor!

With the millions of loyal Jollibee customers around the country, Tan Caktiong’s endorsement is certainly a tremendous boost to Hizzoner Duterte’s winning ways.

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The Philippines, under President Noynoy Aquino’s graft and corruption-laden administration, has now become a pariah in the world’s financial circles due to the recent money-laundering scandal involving the cyber theft of $81 million from the Bangladesh Bank.

The Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC) and the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) were the conduits used for the laundering operation.

What a way to end Noynoy’s watch! Will it be the the last unfortunate mishap before he steps down in three months? I have a feeling it won’t be. I hope I’m wrong.

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Soon after his erstwhile US-educated foreign secretary and Makati Business Club member Albert del Rosario resigned, Noynoy created the National Task Force-West Philippine Sea (NTF-WPS).

It is a good and sensible move. Why he didn’t do it when the Chinese seized Panatag Shoal (Scarborough) four years ago, only he can say.

Or, perhaps Del Rosario, whose only diplomatic experience was as envoy to Washington during Arroyo’s time and who obviously does not have command of the national language. After all, he was the chief foreign policy adviser to a boss whose collaboration alone with beleaguered Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak to create a Bangsamoro sub-state bespeaks of his cluelessness about foreign affairs.

In any case, I believe the NTF-WPS is so multi-layered and has so many member-agencies that it is very likely to lapse into inertia.

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Commissioner Arthur Lim, Comelec’s lead counsel, fears “political instability” if Grace Poe Llamanzares wins as president because the Supreme Court failed to reach a majority vote on whether she is a natural-born Filipino. He explained that in such an eventuality, a case could still be filed against her before the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, thus putting her in limbo.

If that happens, only wet-behind-the ears Chief Justice Lourdes Sereno and the six other justices who voted in favor of Llamanzares will be to blame. In fact, speculation is rife that Sereno and her cohorts will be facing impeachment for blatantly violating the relevant provisions of the Constitution ratified by the Filipino people… unless they rectify their mischievous and grievous error before May 9.

But not to worry. I believe no such scenario will come to pass. Duterte will win by a landslide in an honest-to-goodness election!

What I and about 35 percent of the voting population are worried about is the distinct possibility of snatching victory away from Duterte by cheating him through the Hocus-PCOS system.

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I have often wondered why Noynoy has been so obsessed with criticizing and blaming Ms. Gloria Arroyo every time something goes wrong in his administration. Has it ever occurred to him that several of the so-called Hyatt 10 who abandoned Arroyo are now in his coterie?

Among them are Corazon “Dinky” Soliman of DSWD, Florencio Abad of DBM, Cesar Purisima of Finance, Peace Adviser Teresita Deles, Juan Santos of SSS, Alberto Lina of Customs and Imelda Nicolas of the National Anti-Poverty Commission. Noynoy’s endorsed presidential candidate, Mar Roxas, was also once in Arroyo’s cabinet.

Except for Lina, Nicolas and Santos, I believe the rest have had some kind of charges leveled against them, formally or informally, during Noynoy’s term.

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Reminders (for Noynoy):

1) Filing of charges against officials of the National Food Authority (NFA) during Arroyo’s illegitimate regime. Noynoy himself said on several occasions that there is documentary evidence to prove the venalities in the past in that agency. That was more than five and a half years ago!

2) Order GSIS chief Robert “Pretty Boy” Vergara to report to him on COA’s findings that:

(a) Vergara received the obscenely excessive compensation of P16.36 million in 2012 making him the highest paid government servant then. He was also the highest paid in 2013 with P12.09 million and again in 2014 with about the same amount.

Vergara makes the SSS officials who are under severe criticism for the emoluments they have been receiving look like pikers.
(b) That about three years ago, at least P4.13 billion in contributions and loan payments made by 12 government offices, maybe more by now, to the GSIS had not been credited to the offices as of Dec. 31, 2011.

COA also said that the amount of unrecorded remittances could go much higher because only 36 agencies have at that time responded out of the 186 that were sent confirmation requests by government auditors. Of the 36, 27 confirmed “discrepancies” in their premium and loan payments ledgers when compared with those of the GSIS.

There are three questions being raised when remittances, or parts thereof, of government agencies are not recorded by the GSIS on time: a) Where are these huge sums “parked” in the meantime?; b) Do they earn interest?; and c) To where (whom?) does the interest, if any, go?

Pray tell, Mr. Vergara, what is the present status of these funds, including those that may have been remitted since and not yet recorded by the GSIS? How long do you think you can “dedma” these questions?

I believe it is time for COA to follow up on what Vergara has done on the above findings so that affected GSIS members would know the status of their contributions!

Maybe the GSIS Board chairman, Renato de Guzman, could also look into this?

In this connection, I would like to address this question to COA Chief Michael Aguinaldo: “Is Vergara one of the sacred cows in Noynoy’s coterie whom you wouldn’t dare investigate?”

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Today is the 334th day of the ninth year of Jonas Burgos’ disappearance.

I dread to think of how many more years it will take before Jonas’ disappearance is finally resolved. It is beginning to look more and more like the next administration will have to be reminded of it too. In the meantime, it would be interesting to know what our Commission on Human Rights and the Department of Justice are doing about it.

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From an internet friend:

My dad used to use his police psychology on us. We would be outside playing; my father would come home from work and say things to me like, “Lewis, come here. I thought I told you to mow the lawn.”

“Well father, I forgot.”

My dad looked at me, “Well, what if I forget to go to work tomorrow?”

I’d say, “Well, you could mow the lawn. What’s the problem?”

Taser does hurt.

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