News

Feds forced to pony up extra $800M to pay for support to injured troops, vets

OTTAWA — The federal government is blaming an increase in the number of military personnel struggling with PTSD and other psychological trauma for a multimillion-dollar shortfall in a government-backed insurance program. The Defence Department says there has been a 60 per cent increase in the number of service members who have left the Armed Forces …

Indigenous leaders question Quebec’s commitment to feds’ new framework

OTTAWA — First Nations leaders are welcoming Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s pledge to revamp the federal government’s relationship with Indigenous Peoples, but some Quebec chiefs fear their province’s obstructionist approach to self-determination could hinder the process. Self-governance requires access to lands and resources, which falls under provincial jurisdiction, and Indigenous leaders have serious concerns about the …

Trudeau won’t meet with Indian leader behind Sikh separatist controversy

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will not meet with the Indian politician who has publicly accused members of Trudeau’s cabinet of being connected to the Sikh separatist movement. Despite Indian media reports that Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh is to be Trudeau’s tour guide at the Golden Temple in Amritsar during a state visit to India that begins …

Despite lip service on reducing waste, Ottawa gave plastics giant $35M grant

OTTAWA — The Liberal government gave $35 million to a chemical company that makes plastic resins just one day before Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised to use Canada’s G7 presidency to get other nations to commit to reducing or phasing out single-use plastics. The grant to Nova Chemicals was announced in late January as part of the …

Trudeau names Martha Deacon, Robert Black to represent Ontario in Senate

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has named two new senators to represent Ontario. Martha Deacon is an educator who has also been involved in amateur sports. Robert Black is a leader in the agricultural community who has been chief executive officer of the Rural Ontario Institute since 2010 and has been involved in the 4-H youth …

Aquino arraignment, 2 others in Mamasapano raps on hold

MANILA — The Sandiganbayan has suspended the arraignment of former President Benigno Aquino III and two other accused in the Mamasapano massacre, following the Supreme Court’s (SC) issuance of a temporary restraining order on the case. The anti-graft court also held up the arraignment of former Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Alan Purisima and …

China respects PH sovereign rights at Philippine Rise

MANILA — China has assured it respects the Philippines’ sovereign rights amid concerns aired by some Filipinos on its move to name some undersea features at the Philippine Rise. “China respects the relevant rights enjoyed by the Philippines concerning the Benham Rise (former name of Philippine Rise),” Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) spokesperson Geng Shuang …

Ombudsman probe into Duterte wealth terminated in November

MANILA — The Office of the Ombudsman on Thursday confirmed that the investigation into the alleged ill-gotten wealth of President Rodrigo Duterte was closed last November. In a statement, the Ombudsman confirmed that the fact-finding or field investigation on the complaints filed against the President was closed and terminated on Nov. 29, 2017 after the Anti-Money …

US commits P5.2-M emergency aid for Mayon evacuees

MANILA — The United States government, through the US Agency for International Development (USAID), has committed PHP5.2 million in emergency assistance to address immediate needs of people most affected by the eruption of Mayon volcano in Albay. This follows the Albay provincial government’s declaration of a state of calamity in the area. According to the US …

Cimatu forms task force to curb illegal mining

BAGUIO CITY — The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) launched here this week a task force aimed at curbing illegal mining nationwide. Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu said the DENR Cordillera office is the best place to launch the task force because of the many mining activities in the upland region. Cimatu explained that the …

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