Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Foreign Political Commentator sends a compelling birthday message to Pres. Duterte

President Duterte turns 73.
Nedka Babliku | Scrrengrab from her video

As President Rodrigo Roa Duterte celebrates his 73rd birthday on March 28, 2018, a heartwarming birthday greeting surfaced on social media. 

What makes the video of the birthday greeting extra special is that it comes from someone who did not even meet the Philippine President in the flesh. 

Nedka Babliku is the co-host of Adam Garrie in Digital Divides, a show that offers unbiased and original heavy-hitting geo-political analysis on the world's biggest news stories with no holds barred. 
Scrrengrab from her video

Scrrengrab from her video

Babliku and Garrie are only two of the solid foreign supporters of Pres. Duterte. As seen on their news program, their analysis are in favor of the Philippine President. This is due to the noticeable progress of the country as soon as the Mayor turned President took office. 

Watching their show, it is hard not to observe how the two political analysts agree with how the President run the country through his well-thought of policies that endeavor to lift the Philippines from poverty while fighting illegal drugs, crimes, and corruption. 
Scrrengrab from her video
Scrrengrab from her video

Despite the demolition job of media outfits being done internationally, Babliku and Garrie remains supportive of Pres. Duterte's full-blown campaign of all out war to combat illegal drugs and make the country drug-free.

As the President turned a year older, Nedka Babliku did not miss this chance to let the Philippine President know how sincere of a supporter she is by sending him a heartwarming birthday greeting. 

In the video, the Digital Divides host can be seen greeting the President with sincerity, gratitude and so much respect. 
Babliku and Garrie | Photo CTTO
Photo CTTO

'Hi, I'm Nedka Babliku and I'm a geo-political commentator', she started.

Wanting to give a greeting to Pres. Duterte that he rightfully deserves, the geo-political commentator finds it 'painfully inadequate under circumstances' to greet the President with just a simple 'Happy Birthday'.

'A simple 'Happy Birthday' greeting to the greatest living Filipino feels painfully inadequate under circumstances', the political show host said.

She added that 'if there is anyone whose very birth deserves to be celebrated, and indeed it will be celebrated for decades and centuries to come, that man is Rodrigo Duterte'.
Photo CTTO

Photo CTTO

Saying that without the Mindanaoan President, the country will be bereft or deprived or lacking something. 

On the same video, Babliku wished Pres. Duterte all the best of health and luck. 

'So Mr. President, I wish you all the best of health and luck on your birthday', she said.

As her greeting concludes, she mentioned a very impacting line that the majority of Filipino people can certainly resonate of. Sure to cause you feel goosebumps, the commentator said 'Please stay with us. The world needs you'.

Not sealing it with a kiss, the pro-Duterte commentator instead ended her video greeting with a sweeter surprise by the gesture of mimicking the iconic Duterte fist bump. 

Below is the complete transcription of Nedka Babliku's birthday greeting to Pres. Duterte:

Hi, I'm Nedka Babliku and I'm a geo-political commentator. A simple 'Happy Birthday' greeting to the greatest living Filipino feels painfully inadequate under circumstances. But if there is anyone whose very birth deserves to be celebrated, and indeed it will be celebrated for decades and centuries to come, that man is Rodrigo Duterte — without whom the Philippines will be bereft. So Mr. President, I wish you all the best of health and luck on your birthday. Please stay with us. The world needs you.

Watch the video below:

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Tuesday, March 27, 2018

WATCH: Tourist cancels trip around the world to donate P1.2 Million to the Philippines

A proof that hospitality goes a long way.
John Abou-Samra | Photo CTTO

The Philippines has always been known to be the land of naturally hospitable people — something that is one of a kind.

As this seems too common for us, Filipinos, we do not realize how it greatly impacts people from around the world, especially the westerners, that they find such deed life-changing.

One perfect example is the firsthand experience of this tourist that go by the name of John Abou-Samra, a Canada bus driver who planned to have his 'vacation of the year' in the country.

The tourist initially spent his few days in El Nido, Palawan last June before heading to the other side of the island to explore. Everything was fine until it rained on his parade. Hence, what was supposed to be a day for nature tripping took an ugly turn and brought Samra to the hospital instead.
John Abou-Samra | Photo CTTO

He was supposed to have fun as he bask under the welcoming sun. With the tropical weather that's inviting, Samra decided to go skinny-dip. But prior to that, he got someone to take him a picture first before getting himself soaked in the blue waters of Kayangan Lake, a gem hiding in the mystic side of Coron, Palawan.

However, Murphy's rule always has its way of ruining happy moments.

As soon as the photo was taken, the floorboard he was stepping on split causing him to fall in between the woods with his right leg plunged.

“I asked someone to take a picture of me, and then after she took picture, I moved to this side to sit down. While I moved, two of this wood, they split, and my right leg sank between them up to my hip. Until now I still have the pain,” said Samra.
John Abou-Samra | Photo CTTO

Due to the what happened, Samra went black and blue for weeks. Nonetheless, he is thankful there was no bleeding. When the accident took place, the bystanders rushed towards him for the assistance he needed at that time.

According to Samra, they pulled him up, used ice and cold water to soothe his bruises, then helped him walk up over a steep ridge where he could catch a boat that would bring him back to his hotel. Little did he know, the wounds would later cause him disturbing pain. The following day, the staff on the hotel where he was staying arranged to get him to Coron District Hospital to get checked out.

Dr. Edgar Flores, the attending physician, sent Samra for X-rays to make sure no bones had been broken and advised him on his injury treatment through the use of hot and cold water, combined with rest.
Photo CTTO

While waiting, the tourist had the chance of observing the small hospital's poor condition. There, he found out that the equipment necessary for medical assistance were either non-existent or age-old already. But that did not hinder the hospital's staff to treat him with so much respect and genuine care. Reason why he was totally impressed with the way he was treated.

“Two nurses took care of me in a way I could not imagine, plus in the half an hour I stayed in the hospital, I heard the word ‘sir’ more than 25 times. Even when I was wearing something very casual; I looked like a homeless person, they never stopped calling me sir,” he said.

The brief experience left a great impact on the Canada-based tourist, making him think on how he could repay their kindness. He was amazed with how the Filipinos work. So much so that he returned the next day to ask how he could help. Speaking with the physician who attended him, Dr. Flores gave him a small donation box. But Samra had a better idea.
Photo CTTO

He was about to retire that time and the money he would get is allotted for his supposed tour around the world. But since his planned cruise upon retirement could be put on hold, to return the favor, he offered to procure the medical equipment for the hospital that helped him in Coron. The good Samaritan communicated with the doctor and asked him to compile a wish list that could help him be a better doctor by empowering the hospital to provide better services to its community.

Despite not having much to give, Samra believes in contributing to his community as he has been longtime supporting the food bank in the Tri-Cities.

After a few months and only few weeks after his retirement from Coast Mountain Bus Company, Samra has was set to fulfill his promise. The grateful Canaadian ordered at a local medical supplies company for the medical equipment like ECG machine, oxygen gauge, stethoscopes, a centrifuge and even a defibrillator. All these with the help of his friend from the Filipino community, Freddie Baguno, to coordinate with the Philippines’ consulate in Vancouver to transport the equipment to Coron.

The bill will amount to more than $16,000. But the figure no longer matter for Samra as the items to where his funds will go would surely be beneficial for so many lives.

Impressed still, the tourist said “If you give them the means, they can work miracles,” adding “I like to make a difference”.

Samra was set to come back to Coron late September last year to personally witness the first batch of his donation's arrival.

Indeed, this man's sincerity to pay it forward is both commendable and heartwarming. May this act of kindness influence others to do the same.
Screengrab from ABS-CBN News report 

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Watch the video below:

Sources: Tri-City News ABS-CBN Pinoy Thinking

Friday, March 23, 2018

ICC to use force to investigate PH gov't, will not let go of Pres. Duterte

ICC will not give up. Not this time.
ICC Judges | Photo CTTO

Recently, the Presidential Spokesperson himself Harry Roque said before the press that the International Criminal Court (ICC) would not get any cooperation from Manila no matter how insistent it is to proceed with an announced “preliminary examination.”

This, after the ICC's Assembly of States President O-Gon Kwon has declared that he is “ready to fly to Manila to be involved in any dialogue with any authorities” as well as “to plead with the Philippine people to reconsider” the administration's withdrawal of the country the from the institution that has been established by the treaty of the Rome Statute, the ICC. 

In an interview on Thursday, March 22, with the Bloomberg TV Philippines’ “The Big Story”, the Assembly of States President was the guest of its anchor Roby Alampay.
ICC's Assembly of States President O-Gon Kwon | Photo CTTO

On the said news program, it can be noticed that O-Gon Kwon tends to avoid some questions when it comes to the institutions way of moving forward, or do they even have a choice, in case the country does not cooperate, given that the Malacañang Palace has already stated in one of its interviews, that their cooperation with the ICC should not be expected .

Nonetheless, Kwon insists that he is “ready to fly to Manila” as part of the international body’s endeavor in attempt to reclaim the trust of the Philippine government that impartiality and due process will be the premise of the ICC’s investigation.

“There are a lot of points that I can discuss with my friends in the Philippines,” Kwon told Roby Alampay of the “The Big Story”.

“With all due respect to Mr. (Harry) Roque and his Excellency President (Rodrigo) Duterte, in my humble opinion there seems to be some kind of misinformation as to the nature of the preliminary examination or complementarity, and the date on which the withdrawal will take effect,” Kwon added.
ICC's President Judge Silvia Fernández de Gurmendi | Photo CTTO

The Assembly of States President was referring to the previous announcement made by the ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda.

According to the ICC Prosecutor, her office is set to start with a “preliminary examination” of the Philippine situation in the wake of the complaints anent supposed extrajudicial killings, while stressing that the so-called “preliminary examination” is not an actual investigation.

Trying to clarify things out, Kwon stated that a preliminary examination “does not mean that the court has decided to have the jurisdiction over the situation of Philippines.”

Adding that “nor does it mean that it is, that the court has decided guilt or innocence at all. The pre-trial examination is a process in which the prosecutor considers whether there is (enough) information to proceed with the investigation, proper investigation. In such a case, still she needs authorization from the pre-trial chamber that consists of three judges”.
The ICC | Photo CTTO

The ICC official also made an emphasis on the principle of complementarity, saying that it is “one of the most important pillars of the ICC”.

“If the national domestic jurisdiction is able and willing to prosecute and address the alleged crime, there is no room for the International Criminal Court to intervene. So if the alleged crime is genuinely addressed by the national jurisdiction, then the ICC is not, will not proceed with [investigating] the crimes anymore,” Kwon explained.

When the “The Big Story” anchor  Roby Alampay asked if there would still be an examination should the Philippine government happens to refuse in cooperating, Kwon replied, “There is no time limit on the part of the preliminary examination, so I take it the prosecutor will endeavor in trying to get the sufficient information to make her decision whether or not to proceed with the information”.
ICC Building | Photo CTTO

Due to the court's protocol — of which the signatories were made aware of upon joining — that it would take a year before the withdrawal finally takes effect once a member decides to cut ties from it, Kwon said there is 'ample time' for the Filipino public to think about it.

In the event that an examination gets the chance to run its course, Kwon stated that since the withdrawal of the country is going to take effect after a year from the date of the notification to the United Nations, if and only if the ICC official has been allowed to continue with its investigation in a span of one year, the withdrawal will then be nullified.
Pres. Rodrigo Duterte and the ICC logo | Photo CTTO
“If by any chance the prosecutor is able to get the authorization to proceed with the investigation in a year’s time, then this withdrawal has no effect at all.”, Kwon said.

Watch the video of the interview below:

Source: InterAksyon

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Thursday, March 22, 2018

Yari ka! Pres. Duterte holds evidence of Loida Lewis' connivance with the ICC

Loida Lewis is back!
Loida Lewis | Photo CTTO

Filipino-American philanthropist Loida Lewis has the means to connive with the International Criminal Court (ICC), says Malacañang in a press conference on Thursday, March 22.

This, after President Rodrigo Duterte earlier accused Lewis of doing such.

According to the Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque, Loida Nicolas-Lewis, who is known as a Fil-Am community leader, is capable of doing a conspiracy with the international court based in the Hague to file charges against the President for crimes against humanity for the reason that "she’s rich."

The statement of the Malacañang Palace was made shortly after Pres. Duterte recently threatened to release a transcript of a wiretapped phone conversation concerning the preliminary examination to be performed by the ICC into the country's bloody war on drugs. Reportedly, the preliminary examination is not yet an investigation.

The said conversation allegedly involved Lewis, whom the President mistakenly referred to as 'Loida Reyes'.
Loida Lewis | Photo CTTO

Reluctant to provide any further details, Pres. Duterte only added that the transcript was given to him by "some countries".

On the other hand, the Fil-Am Duterte critic strongly denied the President's accusation.

When Roque was asked if he has further information regarding the allegedly tapped phone call, the presidential spokesperson said that while he has no additional details about the data that the President received, he said he cannot disregard the possibility that Lewis could have really had a hand in the examination of the International Criminal Court into the administration's war against illegal drugs.

He added that "The ICC accepts donations from private persons and organizations and I do know that particularly on the reparation fund... the ICC welcomes donations from everyone".

It was only last week when the president announced that he is going to withdraw the Philippines from the founding treaty of ICC, Rome Statute. Soon after the court announced that it would conduct a preliminary examination into a communication filed by a Filipino lawyer accusing him of crimes against humanity.
Loida Lewis | Photo CTTO

The Philippines’ permanent representative to the UN, Teodoro 'Teddy' Locsin, was the one who sent a letter to the United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres informing him of the government's decision of withdrawal from the ICC as one of its members.

Apart from the anti-Duterte Fil-Am, Pres. Duterte also said that he has information against ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda. This is because supposedly, her phone was also tapped.

Suspicious, Pres. Duterte doubts Fatou Bensouda's ability to handle the drug war case as the ICC prosecutor specializes in maritime law.

Reports says 'Bensouda holds a masters degree in International Maritime Law and Law of The Sea and is the first international maritime law expert of The Gambia. She was also previously Justice minister of The Gambia'.

Meanwhile, the ICC mentioned on its public website that "Prior to her work at the International Criminal Court, Ms Bensouda worked as legal adviser and trial attorney at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) in Arusha, Tanzania, rising to the position of senior legal advisor and head of the Legal Advisory Unit".

It also added that "She has served as delegate to United Nations conferences on crime prevention, the Organization of African Unity's Ministerial Meetings on Human Rights, and as delegate of The Gambia to the meetings of the Preparatory Commission for the International Criminal Court".
Loida Lewis and Pres. Rodrigo Duterte | Photo CTTO

Source: Philstar

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Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Most Improved! NAIA ranks 10th in a global survey

Another good news!

A recent global survey finally changes the image of what was once a terrible and controversial airport. This, after a London-based research firm awarded the main airport of the country's hub redeeming the airport's reputation.

In a recent global survey of Skytrax, a research firm based in London, NAIA or the Ninoy Aquino International Airport has been named as one of the world’s “most improved” airports in 2018.

With actual travelers all over the world as its real respondents, the airport that was then ranked as one of the world's worst airport now ranked 10th place in Top 10 World’s Most Improved Airports, Skytrax survey showed.

Along with Ninoy Aquino International Airport are other countries mostly located at the western side of the globe.

Topping the list was Fiumicino Airport in Rome, Italy. Next to it was Perth Airport in Western Australia and then followed by Calgary International Airport in Alberta, Canada.

The Skytrax’s World Airport Awards website says the award was “based on the relative year-on-year Quality performance by all airports featured in the World Airport Survey, and takes into account the change in rating together with performance changes across the different product and service categories in the awards.”

Reportedly, there was more than 13 million travelers from over a hundred different nationalities around the world who participated in the survey of the London-based research firm.

The Skytrax website also stated that “The survey operated from August 2017 to February 2018, covering 550 airports worldwide and evaluating traveller experiences across different airport service and product key performance indicators – from check-in, arrivals, transfers, shopping, security and immigration through to departure at the gate. The Survey was available in English, Spanish and Chinese language options”.

It can be recalled that during the time of the former President Noynoy Aquino, the country was put into shame after the 'laglag-bala' scam thrived and corrupted a lot of passengers from different parts of the world. Thus, gave the Philippines a bad name due to the disappointment of both the local and foreign travelers brought by such scandal.

Soon after President Rodrigo Roa Duterte came to power, the controversial airport was removed from the world's worst airport list year 2017 based in the travel website The Guide to Sleeping in Airports prior being one of the most improved airports this year as released by another survey firm, Skytrax.
Pres. Rodrigo Duterte | Photo CTTO

Source: Inquirer

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