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Mocha receives Thomasian Alumni Award for Government Service

MANILA, Philippines — Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Assistant Secretary Esther Margaux “Mocha” Uson received on Sunday an award given by the University of Santo Tomas (UST) Alumni Association recognizing her public service. The Varsitarian, UST’s official student publication, tweeted that Uson received the Thomasian Alumni Award for Government Service during the university’s Grand Alumni …

Dela Rosa on media background checks: “It is bordering on illegal”

Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa on Monday assured the journalists that the police force has no effort of conducting background checks on media as it is “bordering on (being) illegal”. “I categorically deny that there is an effort by the PNP to monitor, to conduct background checks on the …

Duterte tells fellow Ateneans: Remain loyal to the Jesuit principles

DAVAO City, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte encouraged his fellow Ateneo de Davao University High School alumni to remain loyal to the Jesuit principles. In his speech during the annual reunion and homecoming dinner of AdDU High School in Marco Polo Hotel, Duterte cited social justice, selfless service, and equality as the values innate in …

Ex-DOH chief Ona: Implementation of Dengvaxia program a big question mark

The implementation of multi-billion-peso immunization program of the Department of Health (DOH) is a big question mark, said Former Health Secretary Enrique Ona as he faced the Senate blue ribbon committee for the first time on Monday, January 22. Ona slammed the Aquino administration, saying that the Dengvaxia program should not have been implemented the …

EU ministers, Abbas to study ways to back two state solution

BRUSSELS — The European Union’s top diplomat says EU foreign ministers will study ways to support a two-state solution in Israel and the Palestinian territories in talks Monday with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Federica Mogherini said that the EU is working “to support an international framework to accompany direct negotiations” despite the U.S. decision to recognize Jerusalem …

Alvarez on zero budget for anti-fedaralism solons: It’s only a joke

MANILA, Philippines — House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez said he is only joking when he threatened to give zero budget to local politicians who would oppose the government’s plan of shifting to a federal form of government. In an interview on ABS-CBN News Channel’s Headstart, Alvarez said that his statements during the oathtaking ceremony of Iloilo …

Sanofi OK’d to shoulder cost of cases related to Dengvaxia vaccine

French Pharmaceutical company Sanofi Pasteur agreed on Monday the demand of the Philippine government to shoulder the cost of any death or case which would be proven to be causally related to the Dengvaxia vaccine. Sanofi’s representative Thomas Triomphe said in a joint Senate committee hearing into the P3.5 billion dengue vaccination program that “should …

Schumer’s moment: Shutdown puts spotlight on Dem leader

WASHINGTON — For Republicans, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is the face of the government shutdown. For immigration advocates, he’s their best hope. Perhaps the most powerful Democrat in Washington, Schumer has so far succeeded in keeping his party unified in a bid to use the government funding fight to push for protections for some …

Indonesia investigates online insults of Brunei’s sultan

JAKARTA, Indonesia — The Sultan of Brunei has made a complaint of defamation to the Indonesian police about an Instagram account that criticized the wealthy autocratic leader of Southeast Asia’s smallest nation. Jakarta police spokesman Argo Yuwono said Monday the complaint was made on behalf of Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah by the deputy director of the …

‘This Is Us,’ ‘Veep’ casts take top SAG TV series awards

LOS ANGELES — “This Is Us” won the top drama series trophy at Sunday’s Screen Actors Guild Awards, making up for the Emmy and Golden Globe honours that eluded it and taking a stand for broadcast network TV amid growing online competition. “The people that watch with us every Tuesday night and embrace this show …