Philippines morning news for May 20

Philippines morning news for May 20

Philippines morning news

Duque: New COVID-19 wave possible if Metro Manila shifts to general quarantine too soon
Health Secretary Francisco Duque III on Tuesday said a new wave of coronavirus infections might occur if Metro Manila shifts to a general community quarantine too soon without mass testing.
— ABS-CBN News

Health dep’t seeks P68B more to fight coronavirus pandemic
HEALTH authorities are seeking P67.62 billion in additional budget in the battle against a novel coronavirus pandemic, as infections neared 13,000.
— BusinessWorld

‘Provisional’ ABS-CBN franchise proposal dropped; House to tackle bills on 25-year grant
The House will tackle proposals for a 25-year legislative franchise–instead of the five-month provisional one that it approved then withdrew–for ABS-CBN, Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano (Taguig) said.
— Philippine Star

No more large-scale lockdown if COVID-19 second wave comes –officials
The Philippines won t be placed under a large-scale lockdown anew in the event of the so-called second wave of COVID-19 infection, authorities said Tuesday.
— GMA Network

Taal update: 15 quakes, weak steaming monitored; volcano still on alert level 1
Fifteen volcanic earthquakes and weak steaming were monitored at Taal within a 24-hour period, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology said on Tuesday, May 19.
— Eagle News

PH coronavirus cases near 13,000, with deaths now at 837
The number of confirmed coronavirus patients in the country has reached 12,942, as the Department of Health (DOH) reported 224 new cases as of 4 pm on Tuesday, May 19.
— Rappler

Layoffs loom at ABS-CBN by August if broadcast not resumed
Embattled media giant ABS-CBN may soon be left with no choice but to begin the retrenchment of some of its workers.
— Philippine Star

Unneeded travel prohibited under altered lockdown
PEOPLE in areas that have been locked down will be barred from crossing over places without restrictions, the presidential palace said on Tuesday.
— BusinessWorld

Philippine Airlines to require COVID-19 test, quarantine for international arrivals
International visitors to the Philippines will need to undergo a COVID-19 test and subsequent quarantine, Philippine Airlines said Monday, as it looked to resume a limited number of flights on June 1.
— ABS-CBN News

Gov’t may need up to ₱11 billion in plan to hire 136,000 contact tracers
The government will need billions of pesos to hire up to 136,000 contact tracers for probable COVID-19 patients, the Department of Health said Tuesday.
— CNN Philippines

‘We have put a lot there’: Dominguez defends fiscal response to outbreak
The Duterte administration has “put a lot” of resources on its coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) response, the head of the government’s economic team said as he defended the government’s handling of the pandemic before senators on Tuesday.
— Philippine Star

Philippine TV network ABS-CBN to remain shut pending court order
The Philippines’ largest television network will remain shuttered after the Supreme Court refused to act on Tuesday on a plea for the immediate resumption of operation, ordering instead the government to respond to the petition within 10 days.
— Aljazeera

Philippines eyes testing 2 million Filipinos for COVID-19
The Philippines aims to test at least 2 percent of the population or 2 million people for COVID-19 including up to 10 percent in the Metro Manila, a pandemic response official said Tuesday.
— ABS-CBN News

Ambo-hit Eastern Samar towns under state of calamity
Nine towns in Eastern Samar have been declared under a state of calamity due to the damage from Typhoon Ambo.
— Philstar

Duterte: COVID-19 vaccine may come by 2021, don’t die before then
President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday is pinning his hopes on a vaccine for COVID-19 being discovered by early next year, telling people to refrain from dying before then.
— GMA Network

Philippines paying the steep price of being largest nurse exporter
It had become so bad that at one point, all she was dreaming about was blood.
— The Straits Times

Palace assures immunization plan ready vs. Covid-19
The national government is ready to implement an immunization plan should a coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) vaccine roll out in the future, Malacañang said on Tuesday.
— Philippine News Agency

Stimulus bill calls for P20B to test 20M Filipinos
The economic stimulus bill filed in Congress includes an allocation of P20 billion for mass testing for COVID-19 in metropolitan areas, but the passage of the bill has been slow despite the urgent need for the measure.

Digital tax could yield P29.1-B new revenues
The chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means on Tuesday said the government could raise an additional PHP29.1 billion annually in incremental revenues by implementing digital services taxes.
— Philippine News Agency

Remittances likely to contract by 7% this year
REMITTANCES may shrink by 7% this year, says Nomura Global Markets Research.
— BusinessWorld

42k returning OFWs in May, June could overwhelm quarantine facilities, Galvez warns
Some 42,000 Filipino migrant workers who are expected to return home in May and June could overwhelm the country s isolation facilities, the chief implementer of the government s COVID-19 response warned Tuesday.
— GMA Network

Government COVID strategy placed at P1.74 trillion
The government will need a bigger amount – P1.74 trillion from an earlier estimate of P1.45 trillion – to carry out its “four pillar strategy” for jumpstarting the economy and addressing the needs of sectors most affected by the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic.
— Philippine Star

97% of COVID-19 aid distributed – DILG
At least 97 percent of the cash aid under the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) has been distributed to the beneficiaries, reported Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Ano on Tuesday.
— GMA Network

BSP waives spread on rediscount loans
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas is waiving anew the spread on its peso rediscount loans for two more months to allow banks to tap the facility to meet their temporary liquidity needs amid the coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19 pandemic.
— Philippine Star

4.6K slots for PUBs opened for 31 ‘rationalized’ routes in NCR
The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) on Tuesday started accepting the application of public utility buses (PUBs) that would be authorized to ply 31 “rationalized” routes in the National Capital Region.
— Philippine News Agency

LTO penalizes motorists violating GCQ transportation protocols
The Land Transportation Office (LTO) conducts random checking in Ilocos Region to ensure that no unauthorized persons are out driving private vehicles and no public utility vehicles (PUV) without special permit plying the roads.
— Philippine News Agency

President Duterte says he wants Sinas to remain as NCRPO chief: I need him in his post
President Rodrigo Duterte has said it was he who didn’t want National Capital Region Police Office Chief Debold Sinas “transferred,” noting he was a “good” and “honest” officer.
— Eagle News

People without passes to be barred from malls
POLICE yesterday asked malls to bar people without a quarantine pass to prevent overcrowding amid a novel coronavirus pandemic.
— BusinessWorld

US military delivers P10-million worth of medical supplies for PH frontliners
Members of the United States military delivered here about P10-million worth of personal protective equipment (PPE) and medical supplies for distribution to hospitals in the Philippines, it was reported here Tuesday.
— Manila Bulletin

Gov’t should pay for virus testing, senators insist
Several senators on Tuesday insisted that the government should bankroll the mass testing for the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) after presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said it was up to employers to spend for the testing of their returning workers.
— Philippine Daily Inquirer

Tariff hikes not right fix, government warned
BUSINESS leaders and economists on Tuesday sounded the alarm against government plans to raise tariffs on certain imports to refill its coffers. Their word of caution to government: importers will just pass on additional costs to consumers already reeling from lost income.
— Business Mirror

No mass testing? Opposition groups ask what was 2-month lockdown for
The lack of a concrete mass COVID-19 testing program — even after a two-month lockdown over Luzon and other areas — only proves that the government has misplaced priorities, opposition groups said on Tuesday.

Duterte declares May 25 a holiday for Eid’l Fitr
President Rodrigo Duterte has declared May 25 a regular holiday in observance of Eid‘l Fitr, the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.
— ABS-CBN News

8 OFWs to be arrested, charged for escaping quarantine facility
An overseas Filipino worker (OFW) who was positive for COVID-19 and escaped along with seven others from their quarantine facility in Manila Bay are to be arrested and charged following the breach of quarantine protocols.
— GMA Network

VAT, excise tax collections lost due to ECQ: DOF chief
Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III has assured senators that government revenues from income tax remains safe despite the postponement of collections due to the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
— Philippine News Agency

PHL Red Cross set to open bio-molecular lab in Cebu City, bares plans to open more COVID labs nationwide
The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) is set to open another bio-molecular laboratory, this time in Cebu City, which is currently still under the stricter protocols of Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) that will build testing capacity in the Central Visayas region, even as it announced plans to open 19 more laboratiories nationwide for COVID-19 testing.
— Eagle News

April revenue collections reveal worse pandemic pain
Government revenues continued to bleed in April, with collections from both the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and Customs dropping further and missing respective targets as the coronavirus outbreak disrupted the economy.
— Philippine Star

Lawmaker pushes for additional tax on video streaming, online shopping
Subscribing to Netflix to watch your favorite show or shopping at Lazada may cost you more soon as a lawmaker pushes for an additional tax on digital services.
— CNN Philippines

Census to be moved from May to September
THE National Economic and Development Authority (Neda) and the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) plan to move the decade census to September this year due to the coronavirus 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
— Business Mirror

Beyond lockdown: Will Philippines be able to sustain low air-pollution levels?
On some rainy days, thick haze would blanket the sprawling metropolis of the Philippine’s national capital region, leaving the city skyline barely visible.
— ABS-CBN News (video)

Duterte’s risky bet on online casinos as an essential service
The Covid-19 outbreak has raised many questions about Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s handling of the crisis.
— The Straits Times

Crime incidents down 40% during ECQ in Central Luzon
The number of crime incidents in Central Luzon went down by more than 40 percent during the implementation of the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine to contain coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
— Philippine News Agency

Supplies of alcohol, face mask stable: DTI chief
Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez said the supply and demand situation for alcohol and face masks has already stabilized.
— Philippine News Agency

Small firms can’t afford testing, PCCI says
THE Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) said the government must help the private sector cover the costs of testing for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), which it said was unaffordable for micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSME).
— BusinessWorld

DICT’s Rio opposes abolition of NTC, supports overhaul of telecom law
INFORMATION and Communications Technology Undersecretary Eliseo M. Rio, Jr. said the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) should not be abolished but proposed instead that telecommunications regulations be modernized.
— BusinessWorld

Opposition solons lament House move to drop ABS-CBN provisional franchise bill
Opposition lawmakers on Tuesday expressed disappointment over the move of the House of Representatives to drop the bill granting ABS-CBN a provisional franchise and instead start hearing the measures giving the broadcast company another 25-year franchise.
— GMA Network

Another 26 Filipinos positive for coronavirus overseas; total at 2,431
The Department of Foreign Affairs reported 26 more coronavirus cases among Filipinos abroad, raising the total number of confirmed cases to 2,431 as of Tuesday, May 19.
— Rappler

San Juan City lifts liquor ban
San Juan City has lifted its liquor ban after Mayor Francis Zamora signed an ordinance dropping the prohibition of selling, serving, and consumption of alcoholic drinks in the city’s public spaces during the coronavirus lockdown.
— Rappler

Overpriced : Drilon urges DOH to review PhilHealth s P8,150 COVID-19 testing package
The Department of Health should look into the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation’s (PhilHealth) pricing of the COVID-19 testing package, Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon said on Tuesday.
— GMA Network

Parts of Mindanao under thunderstorm advisory
Parts of Mindanao have been placed under a thunderstorm advisory today.
— Eagle News

Teacher who tweeted about ‘reward’ for Duterte’s killing posts bail
Public school teacher Ronnel Mas, who tweeted that he was offering a reward for President Rodrigo Duterte’s killing, has secured provisional liberty on Tuesday after posting bail bond of P72,000.
— Philippine Star

BARMM reports 86% distribution of coronavirus cash aid
The transition government of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) reported distributing 86.4% of the emergency subsidy for low-income families on Tuesday, May 19, 4 days after its self-imposed target to complete distribution.
— Rappler

Release of educator who threatened Duterte an initial victory -ACT
The Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) Philippines on Tuesday celebrated an “initial victory” after a teacher, who was arrested for allegedly threatening President Rodrigo Duterte, was released.
— GMA Network

Gov’t targets to have 66 coronavirus testing hubs by May 31
To help meet the target of conducting 30,000 coronavirus tests per day by May 31, the national government eyes having 66 accredited testing centers by that date.
— Rappler

Palace: Government’s goal is to test 1.5-2% of population for COVID-19
The Philippines is eyeing to test 1.5-2% of its almost 110 million population for the novel coronavirus, Malacañang said as it stressed that it would be “physically impossible” to test everyone in the country, a feat that those calling for mass testing are not expecting the government to do.
— Philippine Star

Palace seeks OWWA inventory amid OFWs’ complaints on long wait for COVID-19 results in quarantine centers
Malacanang said that it would already take action on concerns by repatriated overseas Filipinos who had complained of how they had been staying for almost a month in some quarantine facilities without knowing their COVID-19 test results.
— Eagle News

Duterte security aide tests positive, recovers from coronavirus
Not even President Rodrigo Duterte’s security personnel have been spared from the novel coronavirus.
— Rappler

Still no TRO vs ABS-CBN cease and desist order
Embattled broadcast giant ABS-CBN is still unable to get immediate relief from the Supreme Court, after the en banc voted on Tuesday, May 19, to ask – for now – a comment from the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) on the media giant’s petition against the government agency’s cease and desist order.
— Rappler

PH gov’t still has no plans for mass testing, leaves responsibility to private sector
After two months of lockdown and billions spent, President Rodrigo Duterte’s government is still not ready to conduct mass testing for the coronavirus, leaving the responsibility to the private sector.
— Coconuts Philippines

‘Ambo’ leaves P7.13-M agri damage in Samar provinces
Total value of losses in the agriculture sector left by Typhoon Ambo (international name Vongfong) has been pegged at PHP7.13-million, based on the partial damage report of the Department of Agriculture (DA).
— Philippine News Agency

Quezon ramps up fight vs. Covid-19 with own testing lab
The provincial government of Quezon expects to better manage and control the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) with the opening of the first Molecular Diagnostic Laboratory 2+ here.
— Philippine News Agency

Pregnant OFW reaches due date in quarantine facility while awaiting COVID-19 test results
A pregnant overseas Filipino worker who has been stranded in an isolation facility in Manila has reached her due date while awaiting for her COVID-19 test results.
— GMA Network

Competition body resumes merger evaluations under relaxed lockdown
THE Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) said it is resuming some mergers and acquisitions evaluations during the modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ).
— BusinessWorld

Palay farmgate price rises 0.75% in early May
THE average farmgate price of palay, or unmilled rice, rose 0.75% week on week to P18.81 per kilogram in the first week of May, with prices climbing 1.95% year on year, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said.
— BusinessWorld

Government aims to register 5 million in national ID system by yearend
The government aims to register five million household heads for the national ID system by yearend to make the distribution of aid more efficient.
— Philippine Star

Lacson quizzes DOH about overpriced equipment for COVID-19 testing
Senator Panfilo Lacson on Tuesday sought explanation from the Department of Health (DOH) why the government procured a costly laboratory equipment when a different brand used by the private sector is available at a lower price.
— GMA Network

Angel Locsin is raising funds to buy coronavirus test kits
Angel Locsin relaunched an old fund raising initiative, this time to purchase coronavirus test kits. The actress announced on Instagram Monday, May 18 that she is reviving Shop and Share, a fundraiser she and some of her showbiz colleagues started in 2009.
— Rappler

Single new case brings number of COVID-19 health workers to 2,315
Only one new case of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) was recorded among health workers in the past two days, the Department of Health (DOH) said Tuesday.
— GMA Network

Duterte: NEDA and local governments to work on ‘new normal’ recovery programs
The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) will work with local governments to craft regional recovery programs as the Philippines prepares for the “new normal.”
— Philippine Star

Supreme Court calls out judge over birthday party in chambers
A judge in Compostela Valley is in hot water after the Supreme Court found that she held a birthday party with staff inside her chambers, ignoring quarantine rules on physical distancing.
— Rappler

Solon urges use of QR codes in tracking passengers riding PUVs during GCQ
A member of the House of Representatives on Tuesday proposed the use of technology-based solutions like QR codes to track passengers using public utility vehicles (PUVs) once their operation resumes under a relaxed quarantine.
— GMA Network

Cavite gov’t sets one-hour time limit for mallgoers, requires quarantine passes for entry
The Cavite government is limiting the stay of people in malls in the province to one hour.
— Eagle News

‘Sub judice’ not valid ground to skip congressional hearing, Pangilinan says
Invoking sub judice, or the rule restricting public discussion on pending court cases, is not a valid ground for skipping a congressional hearing, Sen. Francis Pangilinan said.
— Philippine Star

PCOO: No public funds used for federalism roadshows this year
No public funds have been used for roadshows to promote federalism this year, Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar said Tuesday.
— GMA Network

MRT-3 eyeing completion of all rail replacement activities by September
The Metro Rail Transit 3 is eyeing the completion of all its rail replacement activities by September this year.
— Eagle News

15K indigent senior citizens to receive pension in Iloilo City
This local government will start releasing next week the social pension of 15,333 indigent senior citizens from this city who qualified for the national government’s social pension program.
— Philippine News Agency

MRT-3 train speed, capacity expected to double by December
THE Transportation department said Tuesday that the operating speed and capacity of trains on Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT-3) is expected to increase to 60 kilometers per hour (kph) from the current 30 kph by December with the completion of rail replacement works by September.
— BusinessWorld

Gov’t eyes zero-interest loans for MSMEs
Micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) will be offered zero-interest loans under the Philippine Economic Stimulus Act (PESA) bill, government officials said.
— Philippine News Agency

Salceda warns PNP to stop illegal cockfights in Albay
Representative Joey Sarte Salceda of the 2nd District of Albay asked the Philippine National Police in this province to crackdown on illegal cockfighting in the far-flung villages because this public activity may be cause of a COVID-19 outbreak.
— Rappler



Feature photo City Government of Valenzuela
This week’s Philippines morning news feature photo focuses on feeding those impacted by COVID-19 #FeedThePeople


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About Philippines morning news.

Philippines morning news roundup is the most comprehensive hand-curated selection of Philippines English language news headlines published. Each weekday we scour hundreds of local and international news sites and websites to find the most recent Philippines English language news today.

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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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