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In Photos: This Week in Philippine Politics

Words by: Marco Pantaleon and Mia Tacoloy

Kerwin Espinosa Pleads not Guilty to Drug Raps

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Kerwin Espinosa, self-confessed illegal drug distributor and son of slain Albuerra, Leyte Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr.,  pleaded not guilty to trading and distribution of illegal drugs during his arraignment at a local court. He was earlier this year charged with violating the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act (Republic Act 9165) after a police raid in his home last year.

Malacañang Clarifies: Rejection of EU aid conditional

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Presidential Spokesman Ernesto Abella on Friday said that the Philippines will only accept EU aids and grants conditionally. This is in light of President Rodrigo Duterte’s directive of rejection all forms of aid in a statement he made  at Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig city. The presidential spokesperson was quoted saying. “”If certain conditionalities are tied to the aid and grant, we must respectfully decline as we do not wish to subject ourselves to monitoring and be dictated to. That is apparently the position of the President at this stage.”

Marawi Liberated

Marawi has been liberated from terrorist occupation, according to reports. Transition housing projects for displaced Marawi residents have begun its implementation in the war- torn city. “Ladies and gentlemen, I hereby declare Marawi City liberated from the terrorist influence that marks the beginning of rehabilitation of the city,” Duterte said in front of hundreds of soldiers during a speech in the city.

Parents Plead for Closure from Aegis Juris Frat Members in Senate Hearing

The parents of slain UST law freshman Horacio “Atio” Castillo slammed six Aegis Juris fraternity members for not helping them look for their son the morning he was killed. The parents also pleaded for Atio’s personal belongings to be returned to them. His father was quoted in the Senate hearing saying, ““The boy we had cherished, who brought us so much pride and joy, he had many hopes and dreams. He wanted to be a lawyer, a senator, and even justice of the Supreme Court. We dreamed all of this with him. We are devastated,”

Increasing Number of Pinoys frown on Duterte’s War on Drugs According to New Pulse Asia Survey

More and more Filipinos have come to frown upon Duterte’s apparent unequal enforcement of the law, particularly on the War on Drugs, according to a Pulse Asia survey released on October 20. Pulse Asia president, Ronald Holmes, was quoted saying, ““For the period June to September 2017, the only significant change in the national administration’s performance ratings is the decline in the level of appreciation for its efforts to enforce the law equally on all citizens (-7 percentage points),”

PDEA Takes Over From PNP in Leading Anti-Illegal Drug Operations

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President Duterte has signed a memorandum that stresses the heightened role of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) in the War on Drugs, with the agency taking over from the Philippine National Police (PNP) in leading anti-illegal drug campaigns in the country. Law enforcement agencies such as the NBI and Bureau of Customs are now mandated to defer to the PDEA concerning information and data gathered. Earlier, President Duterte had ordered the PNP not to interfere in drug raids conducted by PDEA.

House Votes to Impeach COMELEC Chairman Andy Bautista

The House of Representatives has voted to impeach current Commission on Elections (COMELEC) Chairman Andres Bautista in relation to  accusations made against him concerning the 2016 national elections and the COMELEC website hacking in March of 2015. This comes after 137 members of the House overturned the motion of adopting the Committee on Justice’s report, which dismisses the complaints against the embattled head. Earlier, Bautista had made known to the public his submitting of a resignation letter to the President.

Public Utility Jeepney Modernization Program to Proceed Amidst Opposition

President Duterte has urged jeepney drivers and operators to comply with the government’s modernization program concerning outdated Public Utility Vehicles (PUV’s), vowing that old jeepneys would be off the streets come January 2018. Addressing various transport groups, he stressed that the government would proceed with the program as planned amidst opposition.

Isnilon Hapilon and Omar Maute Killed in Marawi

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said that Omar Maute and Isnilon Hapilon, two top  leaders in the Islamic State-inspired Marawi siege have been killed in a military strike. Lorenzana was quoted saying, “”They were able to get a testimony from a hostage who was able to escape. She was able to confirm the presence of Isnilon and Maute in that particular building. That’s the building that we assaulted this morning. They are confirmed dead,”.

MRT-3 Contract with Maintenance Provider Terminated

The Department of Transportation announced that contract with maintenance provider, Busan Universal Rail Inc., will be terminated. The notice was sent on October 17 which listed a few reasons for the termination. Some of the reasons included were: Poor performance;  Failure to put in service and subsequently ensure the availability of contractually obligated number of trains, and more importantly, for failure to put in operation reliable and efficient trains;  Failure to implement a feasible procurement plan for spare parts, as it in fact failed to procure and store the required volume of spare parts, which affected its ability to effect immediate repairs on defective trains and other facilities of the MRT-3 system.


Kerwin Espinosa Pleads not Guilty to Drug Raps

Read more at: http://news.abs-cbn.com/news/10/20/17/kerwin-espinosa-pleads-not-guilty-to-drug-raps

Photo lifted from: http://images.gmanews.tv/webpics/2016/11/640_ZZZ_112316_kerwin_espinosa_3_2016_11_23_10_27_06.jpg

 Malacañang Clarifies: Rejection of EU Aid Conditional

Read more at: https://www.rappler.com/nation/185882-malacanang-european-union-aid-conditions-rejected

Photo lifted from: http://2016.mb.com.ph/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/duterte-presscon1.jpg

Marawi Liberated

Read more at: http://news.abs-cbn.com/news/10/17/17/duterte-marawi-liberated-from-terrorists

Photo lifted from:


Parents Plead for Closure from Aegis Juris Frat Members in Senate Hearing

Read more at: https://www.rappler.com/nation/185653-atio-castillo-parents-aegis-juris-return-things

Photos lifted from: https://i1.wp.com/pinglacson.net/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/photo1018-004.jpeg?fit=2800%2C1576&ssl=1

 Increasing Number of Pinoys frown on Duterte’s War on Drugs according to Pulse Asia Survey

Read more at: https://www.rappler.com/nation/185865-drop-approval-duterte-equal-enforcement-law-pulse-asia

Photo lifted from:

 PDEA Takes Over From PNP in Leading Anti-Illegal Drug Operations

Photo lifted from: https://sa.kapamilya.com/absnews/abscbnnews/media/2017/news/03/05/030517_pdea.jpg

Read more: http://news.abs-cbn.com/news/10/11/17/duterte-pdea-should-lead-anti-illegal-drug-ops

 House Votes to Impeach COMELEC Chairman Andy Bautista

Photo lifted from: https://assets.rappler.com/97330B75D15C43A0AE0E2BB47653DE59/img/CD724527EF9F41A3A06F04B4B548DAEF/bautista-andres-comelec-file-201601101-002.jpg

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 Public Utility Jeepney Modernization Program to Proceed Amidst Opposition

Photo lifted from: https://assets.rappler.com/B72361518D494BD1A7CAC0452DA899A7/img/39571C9432F4441FBB4689BFFD42F709/Transport-strike-Espana-Oct-16-2017-05.jpg

Read more at:http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/938723/no-more-pujs-next-year-duterte

 Isnilon Hapilon and Omar Maute Killed in Marawi

Photo lifted from: http://news.abs-cbn.com/news/10/16/17/terrorists-isnilon-hapilon-omar-maute-killed-in-marawi-battle

Read more: http://news.abs-cbn.com/news/10/16/17/terrorists-isnilon-hapilon-omar-maute-killed-in-marawi-battle

MRT-3 Contract with Maintenance Provider Terminated

Photo lifted from: http://media.philstar.com/images/the-philippine-star/headlines/20141016/MRT-9.jpg

Read more at: http://www.manilatimes.net/ph-terminates-mrt-3-contract-maintenance-provider/357652/