Philippines morning news for February 19

Philippines morning news for February 19

Philippines morning news

End of VFA paves way for China build in Scarborough Shoal –Carpio
The abrogation of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) will send a message to China that it is free to build air and naval bases on the Scarborough Shoal, retired Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio said on Tuesday.
— GMA Network

8 more Filipino crew of Japanese cruise ship catch novel coronavirus
Eight more Filipinos working on the Japanese cruise ship Diamond Princess have contracted the novel coronavirus, bringing the total number of infected Filipino crew members to 35, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said on Tuesday, February 18.
— Rappler

DOH starts locating active polio cases in C. Visayas
With the discovery of poliovirus in water samples from the Butuanon River, which flows from here to Mandaue City, the Department of Health (DOH) in Central Visayas will start locating active cases of polio in the region.Dr. Jaime Bernadas, DOH-7 regional director, said the DOH central office has directed them to intensify active flaccid …
— Philippine News Agency

Gag order on case vs. ABS-CBN necessary: Palace
Malacañang on Tuesday deemed it necessary for Solicitor General Jose Calida to file a gag order before the Supreme Court (SC) to bar parties from issuing statements on the pending quo warranto plea against the franchise of broadcasting firm ABS-CBN Corp.
— Philippine News Agency

Senators push for bill allowing use of motorcycles as PUVs
Senators on Tuesday pushed for the passage of the bill that would allow the use of motorcycles as public utility vehicles or motorcycles-for-hire.
— GMA Network

Travel ban on HK, Macau partially lifted
The Philippine government has authorized a partial lifting of the travel ban on Hong Kong and Macau it earlier imposed as a precaution against the coronavirus threat.
— Tempo

‘Safe’ to join public gatherings amid COVID-19 threat, says PH gov’t
Three Cabinet officials, including Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, on Tuesday, February 18, assured the public that it is “safe” to organize and attend public gatherings for as long as people follow the prescribed precautionary measures to protect themselves from the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV).
— Rappler

Villar says banning single-use plastics may be ‘impossible’
Senator Cynthia Villar on Tuesday, February 18, said that banning single-use plastic may be impossible, pending the availability of alternatives to packaging.
— Rappler

73% of PUIs in Philippines already discharged, says DOH
Only around a quarter of the 527 persons under investigation (PUIs) for suspected coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in the Philippines are still admitted in hospitals, according to data from the Department of Health (DOH).
— GMA Network

7 million senior citizens to benefit from EO setting medicine price cap – DOH
Health Secretary Francisco Duque III estimates as much as 7 million senior citizens will benefit from the newly signed Executive Order (EO) that sets a maximum drug price ceiling (MDRP) for at least 87 drug molecules, or the combination of medications within a single capsule.
— Rappler

Davao de Oro orders remaining small-scale miners in Mt. Diwalwal to relocate
THE DAVAO de Oro Provincial Task Force Naboc River aims to complete the relocation of small-scale gold processing operators in Mt. Diwalwal, also known as Mt. Diwata, this month to pave the way for the full implementation of the river’s rehabilitation plan.
— BusinessWorld

Moody’s: 2020 PH GDP to hit 6.1%
MOODY’S Investors Service has lowered its growth forecast for the Philippine economy this year after taking into account the impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) outbreak on the demand and supply chain in the Asia-Pacific.
— Manila Times

Trump VFA reax, positive tone for PH independent foreign policy
President Donald Trump’s approving remarks on the termination of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) connotes a positive tone for Manila’s pursuit of an independent foreign policy, Philippine Ambassador to the United States Jose Manuel Romualdez said Tuesday.
— Philippine News Agency

DOLE provides employment for 500 individuals in Sultan Kudarat
At least 500 displaced workers in nearby Sultan Kudarat province benefit from the Department of Labor and Employment’s Tulong Pangkabuhayan Para sa mga Displaced/Disadvantaged Workers (TUPAD) Program.
— Philippine Information Agency

Palay output rises by 4.7% in October-December
THE country’s production of palay (unmilled rice) increased by 4.7 percent to 7.49 million metric tons (MMT) in the fourth quarter of 2019 from 7.16 MMT in the same period a year earlier, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said.
— Manila Times

1.46M Filipino families do not have access to proper toilets
Judith Serrano and her family has been residing in Baseco, Tondo for almost two decades. At present, they did not have access to toilet facilities connected to a sewage treatment plant.
— GMA Network (video)

Tough sanctions for inaction vs. illegal gambling: PNP
The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Tuesday assured tough sanctions for police officials who are not taking action on illegal gambling operations.
— Philippine News Agency

COA to DSWD: Pay Landbank’s P82.72 million in unpaid 4Ps service fees
The Commission on Audit (COA) said the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) should pay Land Bank of the Philippines (Landbank) some P82.72 million in unpaid service fees relating to accredited private conduits for Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT), or the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps).
— Rappler

Ortigas Land allots P15-billion capex for three residential projects this year
ORTIGAS Land (formerly Ortigas & Co.) is setting capital expenditures for 2020 at P15 billion, as it scheduled to launch three new residential projects by year’s end.
— BusinessWorld

Village execs told to comply with new road-clearing order
Mayor Edgardo Labella on Tuesday advised officials of the 80 barangays here to “religiously comply” with the directive of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) to implement “road clearing 2.0” on village roads.
— Philippine News Agency

With 14 cases, Trillanes awaits fate for non-bailable kidnapping
Opposition figure Antonio Trillanes IV is currently facing 14 cases under the Duterte administration – the last one being the most threatening so far as it could send him back to jail indefinitely.
— Rappler

National Food Policy out by October: Nograles
Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles announced that the government would be coming out with its National Food Policy by October this year as part of its efforts to eradicate hunger in the country.
— Philippine News Agency

DOLE to launch JobStart in Northern Samar
The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said on Tuesday JobStart Philippines will soon benefit unemployed youth in Catarman, Northern Samar.
— Philippine News Agency

61 schools in Batangas still can’t hold classes due to thick Taal ashfall; clean-up to last for a month
At least 61 schools in Batangas could not hold classes until now, as several towns in the province are still reeling from the effects of the Taal Volcano eruption, according to the Department of Education (DepEd).
— Eagle News

PH coronavirus watch: Suspected cases per region, as of February 18, 2020
The Philippines is ramping up its probe of people with symptoms of respiratory illness, in order to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.
— Rappler

20 probed for hazing death of criminology student
Around 20 people are being investigated in connection with the death allegedly due to hazing of a 23-year-old criminology student in Bulan, Sorsogon on Sunday.
— The Philippine Star

DA: P3 billion to fuel farm, fishery modernization
THE government has initially allotted P3 billion to fuel the modernization and industrialization of the country’s agriculture and fishery sector, the Department of Agriculture (DA) said.
— Business Mirror

After EU exit, UK may also negotiate for free-trade pact with PHL, Asean
With its withdrawal of membership from the European Union, the United Kingdom is seeking to forge free-trade agreements (FTA) with economic partners, and it could just negotiate for one with the Philippines.
— Business Mirror

‘Nationwide shopping sale’ seen luring local, foreign tourists amid coronavirus fears
Shopping is up front and center in the government’s drive to avert the negative impact of the Corona Virus Disease (COVID-19) on the otherwise booming tourism sector.
— The Philippine Star

No more VFA? PH, U.S. ‘will work out something else’ – Romualdez
As the Philippines and the US count down to the end of their Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) , diplomats from both countries said they would figure out ways to maintain robust bilateral relations.
— Rappler

LTO seeks to reopen closed emission centers
The Land Transportation Office (LTO) 12 (Soccsksargen) is seeking the reopening of at least 36 motor vehicle private emission testing centers (PETC) in the region that had been ordered closed by the Department of Transportation (DOTr) for alleged violations.
— Philippine News Agency

Village execs reminded to keep anti-drug bodies functional
The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) in Central Visayas on Tuesday reminded leaders of drug-cleared villages to maintain a “highly functional” anti-drug abuse council to retain the status.
— Philippine News Agency

Ifugao PNP chief reiterates ‘No Take Policy’
The Ifugao police command is serious in implementing the Anti-illegal Drugs, Illegal Gambling and ‘No Take Policy’ of the Philippine National Police (PNP).
— Philippine Information Agency

DOH, DOT, DILG see no need to cancel festivals, conferences due to COVID-19
Public gatherings, meetings, and festivals in the Philippines should not be hampered by the threats of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) which has already sparked global scare, national government officials said on Tuesday.
— GMA Network

Lawmakers not acting on ABS-CBN franchise because they re afraid of Duterte –Atienza
Buhay party-list Representative Lito Atienza on Tuesday said that members of Congress are not working on the franchise renewal of ABS-CBN Corporation because they fear President Rodrigo Duterte.
— GMA Network

Stranded OFWs may return to Hong Kong, Macau as gov’t partially lifts travel ban
Filipinos stranded in the Philippines because of the novel coronavirus outbreak are now allowed to return to their jobs in Hong Kong and Macau, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and the Deparetment of Health (DOH) said on Tuesday, February 18.
— Rappler

Espenido blames ‘failure of intelligence’ on drug list
POLICE Lt. Col. Jovie Espenido blamed “failure of intelligence” as the reason behind his inclusion in the drug list.
— Manila Times

BI sacks heads of NAIA terminals as it probes bribery claims
The Bureau of Immigration (BI) has relieved the heads of the terminals at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) and the head of its Travel Control and Enforcement Unit, as it investigates an alleged bribery scheme that has supposedly faciliated the smooth entry of Chinese workers of Philippine offshore gaming operators (POGOs) in the country.
— Rappler

3.5-magnitude quake hits Davao Oriental
A 3.5-magnitude earthquake struck Davao Oriental on Tuesday, Feb. 18.
— Eagle News

Former Senator Trillanes posts P10,000 bail
A FORMER senator critical of President Rodrigo R. Duterte has posted bail after a Quezon City court ordered his arrest for allegedly conspiring to commit sedition.
— BusinessWorld

PDRRMC Cam Norte cites role of barangays in COVID-19 prevention
Camarines Norte Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (PDRRMC) officials called the attention of barangays in the wake of 2019 novel Corona Virus, now called COVID-19.
— Philippine Information Agency

OFW Hospital and Diagnostic Center to rise in Pampanga
Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go led Tuesday the groundbreaking of the Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) Hospital and Diagnostic Center in the province of Pampanga.
— Philippine Information Agency

Palace: Inclusion of Espenido in drug list may be due to “flaws” in intel gathering
The Palace on Tuesday, Feb. 18, said it was possible Lt. Col. Jovie Espenido was included in the drug list due to “flaws” in intelligence gathering.
— Eagle News

PNP launches ‘first line of defense’ of Tarlac industries vs communists
Police Regional Office 3 (PRO 3) launched Friday the Joint Industrial Peace Concerns Office (JIPCO) that will be the “first line of defense” of industries in Tarlac against infiltration of communist front organizations.
— Philippine Information Agency

Dominguez hopes investor confidence remains amid ABS-CBN issue
Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III has expressed optimism that investor confidence in the Philippines would remain intact if violations cited in the quo warranto petition against ABS-CBN would be proven correct.
— Philippine News Agency

Tolentino appeals for help for 455 towns without access to drinking water
Senator Francis Tolentino on Tuesday urged the government to push for the immediate creation of a potable water supply system for municipalities which still have no access to clean drinking water.
— GMA Network

 

Feature photo Zuellig Family Foundation

This week’s Philippines morning news feature photo focuses on International Mother Language Day, February 21.

 

Find our previous morning news feature photos in the AEC News Today Morning News Feature Photos gallery where you will find a pictorial display of daily life throughout the Asean Economic Community (AEC).

 

 

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Stella-maris Ewudolu

Journalist at AEC News Today

Stella-maris graduated with a Bachelor of Arts, Education from Ebonyi State University, Nigeria in 2005.

Between November 2010 and February 2012 she was a staff writer at Daylight Online, Nigeria writing on health, fashion, and relationships. From 2010 – 2017 she worked as a freelance screen writer for ‘Nollywood’, Nigeria.

She joined AEC News Today in December 2016.

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