02 June 2016

President Aquino attends Liberal Party’s thanksgiving party
It was a night filled with fun, laughter, singing, and dancing.

This was how the Liberal Party, led by its chairman President Benigno S. Aquino III, celebrated their thanksgiving party held at the LP headquarters in Cubao, Quezon City on Wednesday night.

At 7 p.m., President Aquino, in yellow polo, arrived at the event, which was attended by supporters of administration bets Manuel Roxas II and Vice President-elect Leni Robredo.

Prior to the party, a mass was held at 5 p.m. where several LP members and Cabinet officials were present.

Roxas and Robredo took the stage and expressed gratitude for the continued support of their supporters.

“Alam niyo po noong patapos na ‘yung kampanya, nag-uusap po kami ni Secretary Mar, sabi po namin siguro sawa na kayo sa amin, palagi niyo po kaming napapanood. Pero ngayong gabi po, matabang-mataba po ang aming puso na kahit po tapos na ang eleksyon, ‘yung pagmamahal niyo po sa amin buong-buo pa din,” Robredo said to cheers and applause from the crowd.

“Nakikita po namin ang mga expression ng inyong pagmamahal at suporta sa Facebook, sa Twitter, sa Instagram, maraming-maraming salamat po dahil iyan po ang nagpapalakas ng aming loob,” she added.

“Sa ngalan po ng aking pamilya, siyempre po pati ni Secretary Mar, gusto po naming paabutan kayo ng aming buong-pusong pasasalamat at hindi niyo po kami iniwan sa laban mula noon hanggang ngayon at sana, pati na po sa darating na panahon,” she said.

Robredo’s three daughters, Aika, Tricia and Jillian, were also present at the party.

In his speech, Roxas lauded his supporters for continuously wearing a yellow shirt and flashing the “Laban” sign.
“Itong dilaw, itong ‘Laban’ sign, hindi ko pag-aari, hindi kay Leni, hindi kay Noynoy. Ito ay pag-aari ninyong lahat, ng sambayanang Pilipino,” he said.

“Kaya natutuwa ako na sini-celebrate ninyo ang pagsuot ng dilaw, at ang ‘Laban’ sign dahil ibig sabihin engaged kayo, may malasakit kayo sa ating bansa, sa ating mga kababayan, sa ating mga komunidad, sa ating kapwa. Hindi lang pansarili, hindi lang ako, pero sa lahat,” he added.

President Aquino, meanwhile, showed his gratitude to LP supporters by serenading them.

He joined Roxas and several members of his Cabinet on stage, belting out their favorite videoke songs, among them “Can’t Smile Without You”, “Awitin Mo, Isasayaw Ko”, “September”, “Buttercup”, and “Always Something There To Remind Me.”

The President also sang “The Impossible Dream”, the signature song of his late father, Ninoy Aquino.

The crowd turned emotional when the song “Bayan Ko” was played.

Among the Cabinet members present were Budget Secretary Florencio Abad, Social Welfare Secretary Corazon Soliman, Public Works and Highways Secretary Rogelio Singson, Interior Secretary Mel Sarmiento, and former justice secretary, now Senator-elect Leila de Lima. PND (jb)

Climate Change Commission hails executive order on renewable energy resource management
The Climate Change Commission (CCC) sees an executive order making renewable energy (RE) resource management a state policy as a big boost to efforts to drive the Philippines toward a low-emission and climate-resilient future.

The commission’s vice chair, Secretary Emmanuel de Guzman, has welcomed Executive Order (EO) No. 206, which President Benigno S. Aquino III signed last May 20, saying it complements an earlier CCC resolution that sets into motion an urgent and comprehensive review of the government’s energy policy to cut down the country’s dependence on coal and transition to clean, renewable energy.

“The EO is supportive of our coal resolution, which will deliver a policy framework on energy in six months,” de Guzman said, referring to Commission Resolution No. 2016-001, which was signed by the President in his capacity as CCC chair, de Guzman, and Commissioners Frances Veronica Victorio and Noel Antonio Gaerlan.

De Guzman, Victorio and Gaerlan were appointed by the President on January 22, 2016 to a six-year term ending in 2022.
The CCC resolution was envisioned to set in place a clear government policy on coal-fired power plants, which are the biggest source of man-made carbon emissions, accounting for about 35 percent of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

According to de Guzman, EO 206 is consistent with the country’s commitment under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

“The Philippines, with the help of developed countries and development partners, will implement its ambitious GHG emissions reduction target of 70 percent by 2030 as pledged to the UNFCCC, and contribute to the international target of keeping the global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius,” de Guzman said.

The EO provides for the adoption of a policy that would ensure the availability and sustainable management of the country’s renewable energy sources, particularly geothermal and hydropower, as it tasks the Department of Energy (DOE) to lead its implementation.

The presidential fiat noted that the development of renewable energy in the country, such as geothermal and hydropower projects, “is crucial in the attainment of the policy on the reduction of [GHG] emissions”, with the signing of the historic global climate accord in Paris, France in December last year.

“The DOE recognizes that geothermal and hydropower projects are dependent on watersheds and must be exclusively used for such purposes as other commercial exploitations threaten its sustainability, and proposes a policy of ensuring sustainable RE resource management to attain the targets under the National RE Plan 2010-2030,” the EO reads.

Republic Act No. 9513, or the Renewable Energy Act of 2008, designated the DOE as lead agency to implement the policy and programs of accelerated development and advancement of RE resources. PND (ka)

President Aquino meets with security cluster

President Benigno S. Aquino III on Thursday was briefed on the ongoing military and law enforcement operations against the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG).

“The President received an update on the ongoing military and law enforcement operations against the ASG in Sulu as part of continuing efforts to bring about the safe release of kidnapped hostages,” Communication Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. said in a statement.

President Aquino met with the security cluster at 1 p.m. at the President’s Hall of Malacañang Palace. The security cluster, chaired by the Office of the Executive Secretary, consists of the departments of the interior and local government, foreign affairs, national defense, and justice, as well as the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process, and the National Security Council.
Last week, the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police gave the Chief Executive updates on the security situation in Mindanao.

Secretary Coloma has said that the government continues to “exert determined efforts to bring about the safe release of the kidnap-for-ransom hostages through a combination of law enforcement and military operations”.

In April, President Aquino vowed that the full resources of the State are being brought down on the ASG and the government will not stop until the threat posed by the group is ended.

“Our primary objective is to rescue the hostages and ensure the safety of our civilian population. We will leave no stone unturned and are studying every instrument, both military and legal, to ensure success in our areas of operations and wherever else required,” he said.

The ASG last April beheaded Canadian mining executive John Ridsdel after the government failed to pay the P300 million ransom demanded by the bandits.

The group is still holding three captives — Canadian Robert Hall, Norwegian Kjartan Sekkingstad, and Filipina Marites Flor – who were abducted along with Ridsdel in Samal Island in September last year. PND (kt)