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Ang Kalbaryo ni Noynoy

Diretsahan

 

 

ni Horacio Paredes

 

Sa tuluyang pagsubsob ng popularidad ng ating Pangulo sa pagdiriwang ng bansa sa Semana Santa, ang nakikita ko ay parang ito’y sumusunod lamang sa nangyari sa Kalbaryo sa Israel, noong 2,000 taon nang nakakalipas.  Ano ba ang pagkakasala ng anak ni Maria at Jose sa mga taong nagpahirap sa kaniya bago nila ito pinatay na nakapako sa krus? Maaari rin nating tanumgin ngayon: Ano ba ang pagkakamali at pagkakasala ng ating Pangulong Benigno Aquino III sa atin na pasubsob ang kaniyang popularidad at pagtanggap natin sa kaniya?

Hindi ba’t  maliwanag na mas maganda ang pamamahala sa pamahalaan ngayon kesa sa lahat ng dating namuno kasama na ang Diktador?  Kailan na nanguna ang Pilipinas sa pagusad ng ekonomiya sa Asya? Kailan pinuri ng United Nations at ng Internatonal Monetary Fund at pati na rin ng iba pa ang ating bansa gaya ng pagpuri na tinanggap natin ngayong si Noynoy ang ating pinuno?

Sinakop ang karagatan natin ng Tsina at hindi tayo tumiklop gaya ng inaasahan ng Tsina na nag-akala yatang ang ang lahat na namumuno ng bansa ay gaya ng kanila nang  naranasan na maaaring pakiuspan. Baka pa nga meron ring nakatanggap ng suhol mula sa Tsina.

Sa kaniyang ginawa na pinatibayan ang kaugnayan natin sa ating matagal ng alyadong bansa — ang United States of America, merong iilang mga makakaliwa na bumabatikos sa kaniya, ngunit kahit na ang pinuno ng mga Komunista sa Pilipinas — si Joma Sison ay sumasangayon na tama ang hindi natin pagtanggap sa kagustohan ng Tsina na ibigay sa kanila ang Scarborough Shoal, na walang 60 milya ang layo sa Zambales, ang Spratlys at pati na rin ang Malampaya, na ngayon ay meron ng binigiay sa ating langdis na ayon sa Tsina ay dapat na pinaguuspan lamang natin bilang mga magkakalapit na bansa? Hindi ba’t maganda rin ang takbo ng bansa? Meron tayong BIR na nirerespeto’t kinakatakutan dahil sa matino ang pamamalakad? Ang mga mahihirap ay natutulongan ng pamahalaan at maganda rin ang nagawa ng pamahalaan sa mga lugar na nasalanta ng Bagyong Yolanda, pwera lamang sa mga tauhan ng mga Romualdez ng Tacloban at Leyte na sumusuporta sa mga nagrereklamo sa pagkukulang kuno ng pamahalaan sa kanilang tinatanggap na ayuda?

Baka naman na sa Linggo ng Pagkabuhay ay matitigil na rin ang dinaraanang Kalbaryo ng ating Pangulo?

* * *

Sana naman na magsisilbi ngang panakot sa bansang China ang nilulutong kasunduan para sa karagdagang puwersa ng Amerika sa Pilipinas.

Ito ang nagkakaisang pahayag ng dalawang lider ng Kamara hinggil sa nilulutong ‘framework agreement for the increased rotational presence of American forces in the Philippines’ ng administrasyon nina Pangulong Benigno Aquino III at US President Barack Obama.

Kung tuluyang mapipirmahan ang kasunduan sa pagbisita ni Obama, umaasa sina Deputy Speaker at Isabela Rep. Giorgidi Aggabao at Deputy Majority Lea­der at CIBAC party-list Rep. Sherwin Tugna na magdadalawang-isip na ang China sa pananakop sa West Philippine Sea (WPS).

 “The American pre­sence is a credible deterrent. This is true in South Korea where the American bases there provide a strong counterfoil to North Korean aggression. It is also true in Japan where the American base in Okinawa presents a so­lid deterrent to a Chinese grab of disputed Senkaku Islands,” paliwanag ni Aggabao.

Nagbanta naman ang independent minority bloc sa Kamara sa pangunguna ni Leyte Rep. Ferdinand Martin Romualdez na posibleng makagulo pa imbes na makatulong sa bansa ang nilulutong kasunduan sa Amerika.

Ibinunyag naman ng isang dating mambabatas ang dahilan ng pagiging atat ng Tsinang masakop ang iba’t ibang bahagi ng karagatan ng teritoryo ng Pilipinas.

Ayon kay dating Parañaque Rep. Roilo Golez, base sa impormasyong kanyang nakalap mula sa kanyang mga mapagkakatiwalaang sources, ang Malampaya natural gas facility sa Palawan ang target ng bansang China.

Naniniwala rin ang dating kongresista na posibleng isa lamang ang Malampaya sa inaasinta ng Tsina sa bansa kaya mahalagang malaman kung ano ang natuklasan ng Tsina nang magsagawa ng exploration sa teritoryo ng Pilipinas base sa pinasok na Joint Marine Seismic Undertaking (JMSU) ng dalawang bansa.

Sinabi pa ni Golez na wala nang dapat na ipagtaka kung maglagay na rin ng mga instalasyon ang Tsina sa iba pang bahagi ng karagatan ng bansa gaya ng Scarborough shoal, Ayungin shoal at Mischief reef.

 “Kailangan nang maghanda ang Pilipinas ngayong umiinit ang conflict ng Pilipinas at Tsina,” payo pa ni Golez.

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hvp (04.18.14)

Readers who missed a column can access www.duckyparedes.com/blogs. This is updated daily. Your reactions are welcome at duckyparedes@gmail.com or you can send me a message through Twitter @diretsahan.

Brownout Na Naman?

 Diretsahan

 

ni Horacio Paredes

 

Masamang balita  ng brownout sa Luzon power grid anumang oras matapos bumagsak ang Masinloc-Coal Fired Power Plant sa Zambales.

Inilagay na sa yellow alert o magiging manipis ang reserba ng kuryente sa Luzon mula pa kahapon.

Ayon kay DOE Electric Power Industry Ma­nagement Bureau Director Mylene Capongcol, dakong alas-siyete ng umaga nang bumagsak ang Masinloc Plant at posibleng aabutin pa ng tatlong araw bago makumpuni ang nakitang leak sa boiler ng nasabing planta.

Patunay ito na kinakailangan pa natin ng ilan pang power plant upang kung anuman ang mangyari’y meron pa rin tayong sapat na koriyente. Hindi dapat na nagkaroon lamang leak ang ilang tangke ng tubig ay apektado na kaagad ang ating power supply.

Batay pa sa paliwa­nag ni Capongcol sa ilalim ng yellow alert, magiging manipis ang reserbang kuryente sa grid.

Sinabi pa ng opis­yal na sa oras na mayroon pang isang planta na bumagsak at hindi maagapan ang problema ay matutuluyan nang magkaroon ng brownout sa rehiyon dahil sa nga­yon aniya ay mababang suplay ng kuryente hinggil sa pagbagsak ng Masinloc Unit 2

Samantala, walang ma­raranasang brownout ngayong araw dahil balik na umano sa normal ang supply ng kuryente.

Latest update from DOE USec. Raul Aguilos — we might be on yellow alert (ngayong araw), but we expected norma­lization by Thursday,” pahayag ni Presidential Communication Operation Office (PCOO) Sec. Herminio ‘Sonny’ Coloma Jr.

Kinakailangana pa ng ilan pang bagong planta hindi lamang sa Mindanao kundi pati na rin sa Luzon upang hindi na tayo palagi na lamang nasa ilalim ng panganib sa brownout.

*  * *

Nagpalabas ang Supreme Court (SC) ng Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) sa petisyon ni Sen. Bong Revilla Jr. na itigil ang isinasagawang preliminary investigation sa kasong plunder laban dito na nakasampa sa Office of the Ombudsman kaugnay sa pork barrel scam.  Inatasan  ng kataas-taasang hukuman ang National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) at Office of the Ombudsman na maghain ng komento sa petisyon ng senador.

Binigyan  ng 10-araw ang mga respondents na kinabibilangan ng Office of the Ombudsman-Special Panel of Investigators and Field Investigation Office, NBI at si Atty. Levito Baligod na maghain ng kanilang komento gayundin ay inatasan ang kampo ni Revilla na isumite sa SC ang kopya ng naging desisyon ng Office of the Ombudsman sa kahilingan nito na ibasura ang kaso laban sa kanya.

Una nang hiniling ng senador na suspindihin ang pagdinig sa plunder case laban sa kanya sa katwirang mayroon itong naka­binbin pang civil complaint sa Bacoor Regional Trial Court sa Cavite na humihiling na ideklarang null and void ang mga dokumentong inihain ng NBI sa Office of the Ombudsman dahil pineke umano ang kanyang pirma sa mga dokumento ukol sa pagpapalabas ng kanyang PDAF funds.

Ayon kay Atty. Joel Bodegon, legal counsel ni Revilla, ang naturang hakbang ay pagpapakita lamang na may “merit” ang kanilang inihaing petisyon.

Ngunit, hindi nga ba na matagal nang sinasabi ni Bong na peke angvkniyng pirma kahit na moong hindi pa siya kinakasuhan ay meron siyang lgda sa sulat niya sa Commission on Audit bago mairelease ang kwarta na pinatutunayan niya na kaniyang pirma ang nasa sulat na pina-rerelease na ang kwarta para sa kaniyang proyektong hawak ni Napoles?

hvp (04.116.14)

 

Readers who missed a column can access www.duckyparedes.com/blogs. This is updated daily. Your reactions are welcome at duckyparedes@gmail.com or you can send me a message through Twitter @diretsahan.

A Novartis Guinea Pig’s Complaint

Malaya 04.16.14

 

‘I was their guinea pig for almost eight years, now they don’t want me anymore,’ Raagas, 43,  says. Novartis is asking him to pay P30,000 a month for Tasigna (generic name: Nilotinib), an expensive cancer-fighting drug used for treating chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) that Raagas has been afflicted with since he was 30.

 

by Ducky Paredes

 

As a first responder during Supertyphoon “Yolanda,” Dario Raagas helped save lives. Now, the leukemia-stricken firefighter is fighting to save his own.

But his fight for survival puts him up against pharmaceutical giant Novartis and its Manila subsidiary Novartis Healthcare Philippines (NHP), which denies him access to a life-saving drug after using him in clinical trials for one of its antileukemia medication.

“I was their guinea pig for almost eight years, now they don’t want me anymore,” Raagas, 43,  says. Novartis is asking him to pay P30,000 a month for Tasigna (generic name: Nilotinib), an expensive cancer-fighting drug used for treating chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) that Raagas has been afflicted with since he was 30.

People afflicted with CML have a compromised ability to ward off diseases because their bone marrow produces abnormal levels of white blood cells.

Raagas participated since 2004 in what he described as clinical trials for one of Novartis’ leukemia-fighting drug, Glivec (generic name: Imatinib), under its Glivec International Patient Assistance Program (Gipap).

Based on the website of Max Foundation, Novartis’ partner in the program, Gipap was designed “to provide Glivec free of cost to eligible patients in developing countries who meet specific medical and socioeconomic  guidelines.”

Under Gipap, Raagas could access Glivec for free starting in 2004. Glivec was approved for leukemia treatment by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2001.

When his body became resistant to Glivec, Raagas’ doctors told him to try Tasigna, a change that, however, came with a hefty price tag — P30K monthly.

“I almost fainted when I received the e-mail [saying] Novartis was charging me P30,000 a month to use Tasigna,” Raagas said.

The billing came when Novartis broadened the Gipap program in 2008 under its Novartis Oncology Access (NOA) program.

According to the Novartis website, NOA “is a sustainable access solution through which Novartis shares the cost of its medicines with government healthcare systems, charities and other payers, or directly with patients without healthcare coverage who are unable to pay for the full cost of their medication.”

(The NHP head office in Makati City does not return calls on this matter. Calls are not returned and text messages are ignored.)

In fairness, the webpage does say “Novartis shares the cost of its medicines with government healthcare systems . . . or directly with patients without healthcare coverage who are unable to pay the full cost of their medication.” Doesn’t Raagas  fall under this category — “unable to pay the full cost of their medication”? Besides, is it possible that he overdosed on his first medication — Glivec, which caused him to move to the second medicine — Tasigna? Or, does using Glivec regularly lead to the higher priced medication Tasigna?

“Don’t they want me to eat anymore, buy my basic needs and provide for my wife?” asked the 17-year veteran firefighter who earns only about  P30,000 a month, including benefits.

“His prognosis is not good, and he knows it. I hope he gets the help he needs,” says hematologist Dr. Gemma Udtujan, Raagas’ doctor since 2000 when he was diagnosed with CML.

Udtujan, the only known specialist in blood diseases for adults in Leyte and Samar provinces, told Raagas that his leukemia was now in the “accelerated stage” (similar to stage 4 for cancer), making him prone to bleeding inside and outside his body.

Raagas, who, despite his condition, volunteered to go on duty on Nov. 7 as Supertyphoon “Yolanda” was threatening Eastern Visayas, was rushed to Divine Word University Hospital on March 31 after he complained of severe body aches.

But because he could not afford Novartis’ leukemia-fighting drugs Glivec and Tasigna, Raagas had to take the cheaper Hydroxyurea (generic name: Litalir) whose side effects include darkening of  skin and nails.

Medical problems seem to stalk the Raagas family. His brother Danilo died of cancer at age 27 in 1993. His mother Purificacion died of a stroke in June last year at age 75.  The family also lost to Yolanda its ancestral house in Barangay Buri in Palo town, 12 kilometers south of this city.

Raagas has questioned Novartis’ claims of corporate citizenship in countries where it does business like the Philippines.

“Are they here to help their patients or are they here for profit?” he asked.

Raagas’ 17 coworkers at the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) office in Palo, Leyte, immediately threw their support behind their embattled colleague.

“He manned the fort during and after Yolanda despite his delicate condition. That does not make him less of a hero,” said Insp. Agustin Ballo, fire marshal of Palo BFP.

Ballo and his staff have been scouring local blood banks, looking for possible donors of Raagas’ rare blood type, AB positive.  Raagas has also appealed for help from Philippine Red Cross chair Richard Gordon, for easier access to the local blood bank’s supply, and to his boss, Interior Secretary Mar Roxas.

“I don’t want him to die; we want to explore all our options as long as it does not destroy us financially,” said Raagas’ wife, Marilou, who took a 100-km bus ride to Ormoc City to buy her husband’s other medication on Monday.

“I hope Mr. Thomas Weigold (NHP president and program director in Manila) is listening and will help us,” she added.

Novartis was named one of Fortune magazine’s most admired companies three years in a row since 2011, a turnaround from its widely criticized refusal in June 2009 to provide free vaccines to counter a flu epidemic in Third World countries, saying donor countries should foot the cost.

Novartis is cited as the second biggest drug company in the world, with 133,000 employees in 140 countries. In 2012, the drug giant reported worldwide net sales of $56.7 billion.

Its Philippine website said it raised a $1.5-million calamity fund to provide medicine and vaccines to Yolanda-affected communities.  Its Filipino employees also raised a P330,000 donation for the victims and survivors of the supertyphoon.

(I signed a change.org  internet petition on this same matter a week ago.)

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hvp 04.15.14

Readers who missed a column can access www.duckyparedes.com/blogs. This is updated daily. Your reactions are welcome at duckyparedes@gmail.com or you can send me a message through Twitter @diretsahan.

US-PH Agree on EDCA, MNLF Backs CAB

A new mutual defense pact with the U.S. will be drawn up by the time President Barack Obama visits the Philippines late this month.

 

by Ducky Paredes

 

The United States and Philippine panels concluded the eighth round of negotiations in the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) Friday. There was agreement  on key points such as access and use of military facilities and the non-permanence of US troops in the Philippines.

In a joint statement by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and Department of National Defense (DND), they said that the draft agreement gives US military’s access and use of Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) facilities “at the invitation of the Philippines and with full respect for the Philippine Constitution and Philippine laws.”

What this means, according to the Philippine Ambassador to the US Jose Cuisia is that the Americans “have to get our consent for whatever they bring in.”

“They will have to get approval for whatever they are going to bring in,” said our Ambassador to the US.

The agreement also provides that the US will “not establish a permanent military presence or base in the territory of the Philippines” according to the official  DFA-DND statement.

All forms of nuclear weapons are prohibited in accordance with the Philippine Constitution.

Defense Undersecretary and Chair of the Philippine Negotiating Panel Pio Lorenzo Batino said that “this round brought us much closer to finding full consensus, and the draft provisions on key points of enhanced defense cooperation will be submitted to the President for his review.”

Cuisia sees the agreement making it easier for the US to help the Philippines with the modernization program of the AFP.

“It is up to the AFP to determine what they need,” says Cuisia. “Remember the two cutters that we got, because the Philippine Navy said they needed cutters, so we made representations to the US and we got them very quickly.”

The new Navy vessels are  the BRP Gregorio del Pilar and the BRP Ramon Alcaraz that the Philippines acquired recently from the US.

“We would have gotten a third one if we had asked for it, but we did not ask for it at that time,” Cuisia said.

Cuisia says that the agreement will allow the US to put up facilities within military owned or controlled facilities.

“This agreement is different in that it will allow the US to put up facilities that will be beneficial to both the US and the Philippines,” explains Cuisia.

“Right now under the VFA, if there is no such provision, this agreement will precisely enable us to enlarge the capability of the US to assist us,” he said.

One example Cuisia gave was if the US were to bring in rubber boats that are to be used in case of disaster, they need to store it in warehouses which they can put up.

“Not in civilian facilities. It has to be in AFP-owned or controlled facilities. In Subic, there will be a portion that will be allocated there to the AFP,” Cuisia says.

In a joint statement by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and Department of National Defense (DND), they said that the draft agreement gives US military’s access and use of Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) facilities only “at the invitation of the Philippines and with full respect for the Philippine Constitution and Philippine laws.”

Defense Undersecretary and Chair of the Philippine Negotiating Panel Pio Lorenzo Batino said that “this round brought us much closer to finding full consensus, and the draft provisions on key points of enhanced defense cooperation will be submitted to the President for his review.”

Cuisia said that the agreement will make it easier for the US to help the Philippines with the modernization program of the AFP.

A new mutual defense pact with the U.S. will be drawn up by the time President Barack Obama visits the Philippines late this month as part of his Asia tour. If an agreement is reached, the U.S. military presence in the Philippines will expand through such measures as sharing bases.

* * *

Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) chairman Datu Abul Khayr Alonto called on all MNLF members to unite and support the Comprehensive Agreement for Bangsamoro (CAB) signed by the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) that seeks to end decades of war in Mindanao.

Alonto, who was installed as MNLF chief when the group was reorganized in March this year, urged other factions to join his group and put a closure to the conflict in the South.

“We’d like to call on all our MNLF brothers and sisters, in whatever breakaway group they may be, particularly in the Misuari faction and the Arroyo administration-sponsored Committee of 15, to stand in unity with the dominant and recognized, reconsolidated and revitalized MNLF at this crucial juncture of our history as a people,” Alonto said.

The Committee of 15 is composed of MNLF leaders, among them former Cotabato City mayor Muslimin Sema, Hatimil Hassan of Basilan, and several others, who broke away from MNLF chairman Nur Misuary. The group declared a loss of confidence in Misuari’s leadership and took over the MNLF’s central committee.

Alonto urged the other MNLF factions to forget the “mistakes” of the past.

“Whatever mistakes were committed along the way, be they real or perceived, which will have its own due process, be taken as part of the long but seemingly endless journey,” he added.

“We all have rendered sacrifice and service to the Bangsamoro dream. To quote from the wise, a Saint has a past and a Sinner has a future,” Alonto said.

* * *

It was an interesting fight between Congressman Manny Pacquiao and former Champion Timothy Bradley, Jr., one that was much better that the last one a year ago when Bradley was adjudged the better fighter. This time, Pacquiao took the fight to Bradley who also fought a much better fight and seemed to hurt Pacquiao with some of his roundhouses.

Still, I cannot imagine why the congressman can think that winning a boxing competition qualifies one to aspire to be a Senator of the land. Is this because some actors are Senators, too. Really, I have no objection for the boxing champion being a congressman. He was voted on as such by his province mates.  If they are dumb enough to send a boxer as their representative to Congress, the province deserves to have Manny Pacquiao as its representative. Besides there are more than 200 congressmen. One more congressman who doesn’t know what he is doing should not at all make any difference.

But choosing one of only 24 Senators on the basis of his boxing prowess seems to me to be a dumb thing to do both for the boxer and the voters who will vote him to sit for them in the Philippine Senate. That goes for actors and comedians acting as senators, too. Shameless!

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hvp 04.14.14

Readers who missed a column can access www.duckyparedes.com/blogs. This is updated daily. Your reactions are welcome at duckyparedes@gmail.com or you can send me a message through Twitter @diretsahan.

Tungkol sa Tsina

Diretsahan

 

ni Horacio Paredes

 

            Habang bisita ng Alemania si Presidente Xi Jinping ng Tsina  binigyan siya ng isang regalo ni German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Ito ay isang mapa ng Tsina na noong Siglo 1800 pa. Ayon sa mga lumabas na balita sa Europa’y “it may as well have been Germany’s gift to the Philippines and other countries caught in maritime disputes with China.”

Ang lumang mapa ay nagpapakita na ang kamalian ng “historical claim” ng Tsina  sa ilang territoryo kasama ang isla ng Hainan sa South China Sea (West Philippine Sea).

Ang antigong mapa ay binuo ng French Cartographer na si Jean-Baptiste Bourgiuignon d’Anville ay gumulo ng ilang mga Intsik na karamihan naman ay matagal nang napagaralan sa kanilang mga kolehiyo ang mapa ng Tsina na sakop ang mga teritoryong hindi sakop ng mapang niregalo ni Merkel.

Ayon sa report ng Time Magazine: “The 1735 d’Anville map shows ‘China proper’ as a landmass separate from areas like Xinjiang, Tibet, Mongolia and Manchuria. The island of Hainan is drawn in a different color, as is Taiwan. This depiction is utterly at odds with how history is taught here.”

“Chinese students learn that these areas are inalienable parts of China, and that they have been for a long, long time. One netizen described the map as a ’slap’ from Merkel.”

Ang mapa raw ay binuo sa tulong ng mga Heswitang misyonaryo. Ayon sa isang report: “The d’Anville map, at least visually, is a rejection of that narrative [in Chinese schools]. Unsurprisingly, China’s official media outlets don’t seem to have appreciated Merkel’s gift. The People’s Daily, which has given meticulous accounts of Xi’s European tour, eluded any coverage of the offending map.”

Ayon sa Chinese media, ang mapa raw na binigay ni Merkel ay ginawa noong 1844 ni John Dower at inilabas sa London na nagpapakita ng mas malaking teritoryo ng Tsina kasama ang “Tibet, Xinjiang, Mongolia and large swaths of Siberia.”

Ang 9-dash-line ng Tsina ay ginawa naman ng Kuomintang Government noong 1947.

Ang 9-dash line ay sinasakop  ang  mga 200 nautical mile Exclusive Economic Zone of ilang mga bansa kagaya ng Pilipinas na ayon sa United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) ay pag-aari ng ibang mga bansa gaya ng Pilipinas.

Sa ating bansa , meron tayong  mapa na ginawa pa noong 1734 na pinapakita ang Panatag Shoal (Scarborough) ay sakop ng  Lalawigan ng Zambales. Ang mapa ay ginawa ni  Spanish Jesuit Pedro Murillo Velarde. Ang Panatag ay tinawag sa mapa ni Murillo na  “Bajo de Masinloc.”

Ngunit, hindi naman maaaring kausapin ang Tsina tungkol dito dahil ang tatanggapin lamang nila ay kung ano ang galing sa kanila na mapa. Ayaw rin silang makinig sa United Nations kung kaya naman ang  magagawa na lang natin ay umasa sa mga bansang kakatakutan ng mga Intsik gaya ng  Amerika.

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hvp (04.14.14)

 

Readers who missed a column can access www.duckyparedes.com/blogs. This is updated daily. Your reactions are welcome at duckyparedes@gmail.com or you can send me a message through Twitter @diretsahan.

How PSALM Made Billions in WESM

PSALM’s move to sideline Malaya was prompted less by technical limitations than by corporate greed. PSALM managed to reap a whopping P6.84 billion during the November-December months when prices rocketed to as high as the market bid cap of P62 per kilowatt hour (kWh).

 

by Ducky Paredes

 

Who will be found wanting when the Philippine Electricity Market Corp. (PEMC) and the Office for Competition (OFC) of the Department of Justice (DOJ) are finally done with their parallel probes?

The November-December 2013 months was a period of abnormally tight supply, which— according to the Senate energy committee hearings—PSALM helped happen by not operating its 650-MW Malaya thermal plant even when market supply was already tight and prices started running wild.

PSALM runs the National Power Corp. (Napocor) power plants that have yet to be sold to the private sector. Its mandate, as a Government-Owned and Controlled Corporation (GOCC) is the protection of the Filipino consumer.

* * *

During the Senate hearings, PSALM President Emmanuel Ledesma cited technical limitations of the Malaya plant to justify its non-use at a time when its supply was most needed to mitigate the WESM price upsurge.

However, the Real-Time Ex-Post Price (RTEX) data eventually published by WESM indicates that PSALM’s move to sideline Malaya was prompted less by technical limitations than by corporate greed. PSALM managed to reap a whopping P6.84 billion during the November-December months when prices rocketed to as high as the market bid cap of P62 per kilowatt hour (kWh).

* * *

It became clear enough during the Osmeña-led Sanate hearing that had PSALM operated the Malaya thermal plant, the spike in WESM prices would have been totally avoided.

In fact, a study presented during the Senate hearing bared that had Malaya been in use during the Nov. 11-Dec. 10 shutdown, WESM prices would have fallen by as much as 70% from the then-rate of P21/kWh to just P5. WESM works well only if everyone cooperates honestly.

* * *

Is it possible that what PSALM management had in mind at that time was not the estimated P1.3 billion it stood to lose by dispatching the Malaya plant, but the P6.84 billion it stood to gain by not using the Malaya plant?

The WESM-published RTEX data shows that the aggregate revenues of Malaya and three more PSALM power plants—Caliraya, Kalayaan and Casecnan—was estimated to nearly double from P2.67 billion last November to P4.17 billion in December.

PSALM generated P2,667,150,000 in earnings from  these four plants’ combined output of 151.08 gigawatt hours (GWh) at an average price of P17.65 per kWh in November 2013.

Its earnings went up by roughly 60% the month after to P4,173,850,000  from the four plants’ aggregate output of 184.12 GWh at the higher average price of P22.669 per kWh.

Such RTEX data on PSALM’s estimated revenues during the tight supply months—thanks in large part to its non-dispatch of the Malaya plant—showed that GOCC racked up total earnings of P6.841 billion over the November-December period from a combined output of 335.20 GWh from four of its power plants.

* * *

As pointed out by one industry insider, PSALM was able to make “windfall profits by taking advantage of the shortness of supply to the detriment of the public. PSALM intentionally did not dispatch its Malaya plant in flagrant violation of WESM’s must-offer rule.”

  This seems to be what Energy Secretary Jericho Petilla had in mind when he told the Supreme Court during the Feb. 11 oral arguments that PSALM had committed “anti-competitive behavior” in the past when it offered electricity supply bids to WESM but failed to dispatch such power.

   Petilla revealed that PSALM repeatedly declared an “open breaker status,” the last one in November last year.

An “open breaker status” happens, he said, when a power supplier makes a bid offer at WESM but fails to dispatch such electricity once asked to do so.

* * *

Petilla truthfully said “yes” when SC Associate Justice Marvic Leonen asked him whether PSALM was guilty of anti-competitive behavior and had, in fact, violated WESM’s “must-offer” rule (MOR) when it failed to dispatch what it had offered at the spot market.

MOR requires all WESM players to offer their respective 100% generation capacities to the spot market to guarantee adequate or stable supply and thus stave off any artificial supply glitch that would naturally drive up generation charges that distribution utilities like Meralco pass on to their customers.

After being questioned by Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno about this WESM breach, Petilla told the High Court:  “PSALM committed a violation as regards dispatch. In the past, they have been behaving in a way that regulators have called their attention. They will be investigated and penalized.”

* * *

That PSALM could not escape blame for the electricity fiasco seemed like a foregone conclusion when Secretary Petilla said during the separate Senate and Supreme Court hearings that the Department of Energy (DOE) was investigating several Gencos, including PSALM, for violating the MOR rule on WESM trading and dispatch during the 30-day maintenance shutdown of the Malampaya natural gas facility, which is the main power supplier for the Luzon grid.

About a dozen Gencos trading in the spot market during the shutdown period were guilty of “anti-competitive behavior,”  said Petilla, because they did not actually dispatch power when they were supposed to do so, leading to a tightness in supply that naturally pushed prices higher than usual.

“It appears there were power plants that violated the real time dispatch (RTD) and must-offer rule (MOR). Not complying with dispatch schedules are violations of the WESM,” added Petilla.

During the Feb. 13 hearing at the SC on oral arguments in connection with the Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) vs. Meralco’s December rate hike, Petilla said that PSALM was among those that had engaged in “anti-competitive behavior” when it did not dispatch the Malaya plant.

WESM rules regard as anti-competitive behavior any act by a Genco to physically withhold or refuse to offer to sell or schedule, its maximum available output of reserve to the WESM.

* * *

The end-2013 price spiral was reversed in this year’s first three months to March following the ERC-ordered voiding and re-computation of the Oct. 26-Dec. 25 prices at WESM, on the strength of this commission’s preliminary probe conclusion of “market failure” resulting from the Gencos’ breach of the system’s MOR.

 In its 35-page ruling dated March 3, the ERC said it found basis to use the state’s police powers and intervene after determining in its investigation that “the WESM prices during the November and December 2013 supply months could not qualify as reasonable, rational and competitive,” owing to the confluence of factors accompanying the tight market supply situation.

Hence, it ordered PEMC, which operates WESM, to re-calculate and implement the regulated prices in the revised WESM bills for that two-month period.

“The dispatch schedule and the prices during the November and December 2013 supply months reflected an inefficient allocation of resources contrary to the aspirations of WESM….brought about   by the   tight   supply   condition arising from  the participants’ failure to abide with the MOR,” said ERC in its March 3 order.

* * *

Despite such crystal clear findings, though, ERC stopped short of naming the culprits.

But lawyer Phillip Adviento, who heads the PEMC Training and Communications Group, says that his office, which  was doing the investigating would soon submit its final report ahead of its original June 2014 deadline.

* * *

The DOJ-OFC will also come out soon with its own findings as Justice Secretary Leila de Lima announced that the ERC’s March 3 order gave stronger impetus to the OFC to continue with its own investigation, in light of the commission’s conclusion that the December rate hike was caused by certain Gencos failing or refusing to offer their full capacities in the spot market.

We have a pricing system that works well when every one of the Gencos  cooperate fully and offer all of their resources. That not everyone followed the “must offer rule” (MOR) clearly caused electricity rates to skyrocket. How hard would it be to find who the perpetrators were?

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hvp 04.13.14

Readers who missed a column can access www.duckyparedes.com/blogs. This is updated daily. Your reactions are welcome at duckyparedes@gmail.com or you can send me a message through Twitter @diretsahan.

Huwag Maniwala Sa Haka-Haka

Diretsahan

 

ni Horacio Paredes

 

Ayon sa palasyo, wala silang impormasyon sa Malacañang partikular na ang Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace Process (OPAPP) sa pagkalas umano ng may 4,000 miyembro ng Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) na sumanib ang mga ito sa Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) ni Nur Misuari dahil sa ayaw nilang isuko ang kanilang mga armas.

Haka-haka lamang ito at gawa-gawa ng mga walang magawang matino at walang ibang maisip na ipahayag sa diaryo

‘Ika nga ni OPAPP Secretary Teresita Quintos Deles: ” We have received no such report.”

Maaaring merong ilang Muslim na naniniwala na kapag wala na silang armas ay aapihin na sila ng ating militar ngunit hindi ito ang paniniwala ng nakakarami at ng mga namumuno sa MILF. Hindi kapanipaniwala na ang apa na simnasabimg,ga lider ng MILF na kumalas na’t sumanib sa MNLF ni Nur Misuari ay meron ring mga aramadong isang libong miyembro. Sa totoo pa nga, ayon ni Deles, meron ring mga  MNLF na nakikiusap sa pamahalaann ukol sa usapin tungkol sa pagsuko ng kanilang armas.

“The truth is that there are MNLF commanders/communities talking to OPAPP re: the transformation to peace and development communities inclusive of gun regulation,” ayon pa kay Deles.

Hindi ako mapapapanilwala na hindi umano gusto ng MILF commanders ang nilalaman ng Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro na nilagdaan ng kanilang organisasyon at gobyerno noong Marso 27, lalo na sa usapin ng pagsusuko ng kanilang mga armas.

Ang mga kapatid nating Muslim ay gusto rin na mapayapang kabuhayan gaya rin nating mga Kristiyano. Wala namang pagkakaiba ang mga Pilipino anuman ang kanilang paniniwala’t relihiyon.

* * *

   Kung tayong mga Pilipino ay gustong umunlad, ganoon rin ang mga Muslim at kaya nga sila nakaisip na kumalas sa atin ay sa dahilang hindi sila nabibigyan na pagkakataong umunlad. Kaya lamang sila nagalsa’t nilabanan ang pamahalaan ay dahil na rin sa hindi sila tinuturing gaya ng nakakarami. Ang tunay na dapat kinakalaban ng mga Muslim ay ang mga taong naniniwala na hindi maaring katiwalaan kahit na sinumang Muslim at ang mga nagkakalat na mas binibigyang importansiya ng mga Muslim ang kanilang sandata o baril kesa sa kanilang pamilya. Kung nalalaman nating hindi naman ito totoo sa ibang mga Pilipino, bakit kung ganito ang sinasabi tungkol sa Muslim ay pinaniniwalaan ng marami ang ganitong mga paniniwala?

Dapat na buksan natin ang ating mga mata at isipan at pagbigyan natin ang usapin ng ating gobiyerno at ng MILF na naniniwalang maaaring magkaroon ng kapayapaan sa pamamagitan ng pagbuo ng Bangsamoro sa ilaim na bansang Pilipinas at ito ang paraan upang magkaroon tayo ng kapayapaan at kaunlaran sa Mindanao.

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hvp (04.11.14)

Readers who missed a column can access www.duckyparedes.com/blogs. This is updated daily. Your reactions are welcome at duckyparedes@gmail.com or you can send me a message through Twitter @diretsahan.

Everybody Wins

Isn’t that marvelous? Everybody apparently won.  And we thought that there was no middle ground.

 

by Ducky Paredes

 

What a wonderful culture we Filipinos have? The Supreme Court takes a whole year deciding on what to do about the Reproductive Health Act of 2012 (R.A. 10354), something about which  apparently many of us felt  strongly. The Court finally decides that the RH Law was, after all, not at all constitutionally infirm, despite  dozens of petitions against the law.

The surprising thing is that both sides — those who were against the legislation and those who were for it — are now  claiming that they have won.

The Catholic Bishop’s Conference of the Philippines and the local Talibans think that they have won and those who wanted the Law both for the health of women and to perhaps bring down a bit the runaway population growth rate of the country are also claiming victory. Isn’t that marvelous? Everybody apparently won.

And we thought that there was no middle ground.

The Supreme Court first stopped the implementation of the law for four months after it took effect on March 18, 2013. It issued a status quo ante order after Pro-Life Philippines Foundation Inc. and Catholic Church groups questioned the law, saying it violated the constitutional provisions guaranteeing the right to life.

Before the fourth month  of suspension, the Supreme Court indefinitely extended the period of its status quo ante order last July.

R.A. 10354 required government health centers to hand out free condoms and birth control pills, and mandated that sex education be taught in schools.

The law also required public health workers to receive family planning training, while post abortion medical care was also legalized.

The Catholic Church led a successful campaign for more than 15 years against any form of family planning laws in the Philippines.

Among the provisions of R.A. 10354 taken away by the Court’s order are:

• Section 7 which is about access to family planning, as well as Section A and B of its implementing rules and regulations . Section A requires private health facilities and non-maternity specialty hospitals and hospitals owned and operated by a religious group to refer patients, not in an emergency or life threatening case to another health facility which is conveniently accessible. Section B allows minor-parents or minors who have suffered a miscarriage access to modern methods of family planning without the necessity of a written consent from their parents or guardians;

• Section 23 Punishable Acts (a) (1) and corresponding provision in the RH-IRR particularly Section 24 insofar as it punishes any health care provider who refuses to disseminate information regarding programs and services on reproductive health regardless of his or her religious beliefs;

• Section 23 (a)(2)(i) and a provision in the IRR with regard to allowing a married individual, not in an emergency or life –threatening case to undergo reproductive health procedures without the consent of the spouse;

• Section 23(a)(3) and the provision in the IRR which punishes any health care provider who fails and/or refuses to refer a patient not in an emergency or life threatening case to another health care service provider within the same facility or one which is conveniently accessible regardless of his or her religious beliefs;

• Section 23(b) and the provision in the IRR which punishes any public officer who refuses to support reproductive health programs or commits any act that hinders the full implementation of a reproductive health program, regardless of his or her religious beliefs;

• Section 17 on Pro bono services to indigent women and corresponding provision in the IRR regarding the rendering of pro bono reproductive health service, insofar as they affect the conscientious objector in securing PhilHealth accreditation;

• Section 3.01(a) and (j) of the IRR insofar as it uses the qualifier “primarily” for contravening Section 4(a) of the RH Law specifically the definition of abortifacient and violating Section 12 on right to life and protection of life at conception.

• Section 23 (a)(2)(ii) insofar penalizing a health service provider who requires parental consent from the minor in not emergency or serious situation.

* * *

President Benigno Aquino defied church pressure and signed the law into effect in December 2012, but the Supreme Court quickly suspended it after church groups filed petitions arguing it was unconstitutional.

Representative Edcel Lagman, the principal author of the law, said immediately after the verdict:

“A grateful nation salutes the majority of justices for their favorable ruling promoting reproductive health and giving impetus to sustainable human development.”

The Catholic Church, which counts as flock over 80 percent of the country’s 100 million population, had led street protests denouncing the law as “evil”, and at one point in its opposition campaign threatened Aquino with excommunication.

The Catholic Church leaders have led two revolutions that toppled unpopular presidents in recent Philippine history, and they continue to influence the parliamentary and legal branches of government.

Proof of Catholic  influence is that the Philippines is the only country where divorce remains illegal.

Nevertheless, a recent survey by the Social Weather Stations found about 84 percent of Filipinos agree that the government should provide free family planning options, including contraceptives.

SWS found that  72 percent were “in favor” of the RH law.

Women’s rights groups and other supporters of the law say it will be a powerful tool in fighting poverty and cutting the birth rate down from 3.54, one of the highest in the world.

More than a quarter of the population live on the equivalent of 62 cents a day, according to the government, and experts say there is an urgent need to provide free reproductive medical services that the poor cannot otherwise afford.

More than a third of Metro Manila’s 14 million population live in sprawling slums, according to a 2010 World Health Organization report, and many of them do not have access to proper sanitation, let alone health centers.

According to the British medical charity Merlin, which has backed the passage of the RH law, 14-15 mothers die daily in the Philippines from complications related to childbirth.

But they can all agree that the Supreme Court ruled in their favor on this one.

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hvp 04.10.14

Readers who missed a column can access www.duckyparedes.com/blogs. This is updated daily. Your reactions are welcome at duckyparedes@gmail.com or you can send me a message through Twitter @diretsahan.

Joma, Singapore’s Yolanda Aid & Clean Toilets

The P3.78 million rebuilding of the health facility is a joint effort between the Singaporean Red Cross (SRC), International Committee on the Red Cross and the Philippine Red Cross (PRC).

 

by Ducky Paredes

 

Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) founding chairman Jose Maria Sison expressed his support on the filing of a memorial against China before the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) which questions the mainland’s nine-dash line territorial claims over shoals and islets in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea).

Sison, chief political consultant of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP), said that it was better for Manila to make a strong case before the ITLOS than ignore China’s bullying.

 “In the first place, filing the case before ITLOS and the Arbitral Tribunal is not a violent act at all, no matter how China presents it as a hostile act. Had the Philippines desisted from filing the case, China would have certainly used the desistance as proof of a lack of conviction and interest in the case,” Sison said.

On March 30, the government filed the country’s memorial before the United Nations which questions China’s nine-dash line territorial rule that encroached islets and shoals in the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone .

The memorandum or “memorial” in the language of international law contains all pertinent legal bases and other arguments supporting the country’s claim over its territories.

Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert Del Rosario  said that the Philippines’ memorial was submitted in conformity with the Rules of Procedure adopted by the five-member Arbitral Tribunal last August, which established March 30, 2014 as the due date for its submission.

What does Joma’s support of the government’s stand, despite China’s outright condemnation of the Philippine action, actually mean?

* * *

Singaporean President Tony Tan Keng Yam committed to help rebuild an old and poorly equipped Basey District Hospital damaged by supertyphoon “Yolanda.”

During his visit, President Tan said that he and his wife were moved with compassion to see the devastation wrought by the storm but impressed with the resilience of survivors.

The P3.78 million rebuilding of the health facility is a joint effort between the Singaporean Red Cross (SRC), International Committee on the Red Cross and the Philippine Red Cross (PRC).

The hospital, which had been operating for 42 years, located on top of a hill in Loyo village in Basey town, was heavily damaged by the storm.

SRC’s rehabilitation work at the Basey District Hospital started in February 2014 and is expected to be completed by end of May.

The project includes demolition of damaged walls; construction of new columns; replacement of entire roof; construction of new ceilings and new partition walls; new X-ray room; rehabilitation of the isolation room and dietary section, staff accommodation, stock room, toilets and septic tanks; and provision of some hospital equipment and consumables.

“It shows that Singaporeans are aware of the problems of our neighbors. We are doing a lot of work in this part of the Philippines,” the visiting Singaporean chief executive told reporters.

He also led the turnover of the first batch of medical supplies to the chief of hospital Dr. Rutchie Egos. Witnessing the event were Samar Gov. Sharee Ann Tan, Basey Mayor Igmedio Ponferrada, PRC chairman Richard Gordon and SRC secretary general Benjamin William.

“We are grateful for the assistance of various international organizations. This is for the people of Samar… The hospital was badly damaged, but we are actually better equipped now than before Yolanda because many organizations came to help us,” Egos said.

President Tan, the SRC patron, presented over USD 7 million (PHP231,000,000) in donations to SRC partners for rehabilitation projects along Yolanda’s path in Bantayan Island, Busuanga Island, Leyte, Ormoc, Panay Island, Samar and the Visayas.

The donation is expected to help some 1.5 million people rebuild their lives through reconstruction and rehabilitation of schools, healthcare facilities, medical equipment and supplies, water and sanitation, and shelters.

“I hope this effort will carry on. This is a very good sign of friendship between Singapore and Philippines,” President Tan added.

* * *

At the Bulong-Pulongan Tuesday, Unilever, together with the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) and World Health Organization talked about toilets — clean toilets! Did you know that 26% of Philippine households have no toilets?

UNICEF WASH Specialist Dr. Mike Gnilo says: “More that eight percent of these households practice open defecation which threatens water resources, In some communities, toilets are also shared by more than a dozen families which make them harder to maintain.”

Not only that; also, over 90% of households do not practice proper toilet hygiene and sanitation, using detergents and bleaches which do not kill disease-spreading germs. Thus, Unilever, the maker of Domex, the leading household cleaning brand in the Philippines, partners with UNICEF and the Philippine Public Health Association (PPHA) in the advocacy of the One Million Clean Toilets Movement, an educational campaign on the health impacts of germ-free toilets. It secures pledges from households, government agencies and private corporations to conscientiously maintain clean, safe and hygienic bathrooms. For the Holy Week, Unilever will team up with Shell Philippines in a cleanup of all Shell service stations on the NLEX/SLEX route. It will also tie-up with hospitals and dining establishments in its Domex One Million Clean Toilets Drive.

Domex hopes that by World Toilet Day in November, it will have gathered one million clean toilet pledges from households, government agencies and private institutions in line with Unilever Philippines’ goal of 1 Billion Better Lives by the year 2020, in the thrust to create improved, sustainable living around the globe.

As a confirmed Metro Manila dweller, I am shocked at the statistics that show the lack of toilets in the Philippines. At least, the government is no longer installing steel pissing posts for men at street corners and most Shell and Petron gas stations have relatively clean toilets along my usual route home. Hopefully, things will further improve. By the way, to give Unicef more funds by going to the Domex Philippines page in Facebook. Click on where it says: “Pledge Here” to give P5.00 to Unicef.

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hvp 04.09.14

Readers who missed a column can access www.duckyparedes.com/blogs. This is updated daily. Your reactions are welcome at duckyparedes@gmail.com or you can send me a message through Twitter @diretsahan.

RH Naipasa, Ngunit Maraming Tinanggal

Diretsahan

 

ni Horacio Paredes

 

Niresolba na rin ng Korte Suprema ang kontrobersya ng Responsible Parenthood Health Act o Republic Act No. 10354 kung saan itinakda itong naaayon sa batas maliban sa ilang probisyon ng Section 7 at Section 23.

Sinabi ni SC Spokesman Theodore Te na bagama’t itinakdang legal ang RH Law ay tinanggal naman ng SC ang ilang bahagi ng Section 7 o ang Access to Family Planning.

Ang mga tinuturing ng Korte na labag sa Saligang Batas:

- Bahagi ng Section 7 (Access to Family Planning) na nagsasabing hindi obligado ang mga ospital na pinatatakbo ng mga religious group na magbigay ng modernong family planning method, pero kinakailangan na i-refer ng nasabing ospital ang pasyente sa isa pang health facility.

- Pati na ang bahagi ng Section 7 na nagsasabing pinapayagan ang mga menor de edad na nagkaanak na o ‘di kaya ay nabuntis pero nakunan na magkaroon ng access sa modernong paraan ng family planning kahit walang written consent o permiso ng kanyang mga magulang o guardian. Gayundin ang ilang bahagi ng Section 23 na tuma­talakay sa Prohibited Acts o mga ipinagbabawal sa ilalim ng RH Law.

- Section 23-A-1 o ang probisyon na nagpaparusa sa mga health care service provider na tatanggi o mabibigong magpakalat ng impormasyon hinggil sa RH service kahit pa batay sa kanyang religious belief.

- Pati na ang Section 23-A-2-i na nagbibigay permiso sa isang may-asawa na sumailalim sa RH procedure kahit walang consent ng kanyang asawa.

- Section 23-a-3, nag-oobliga sa mga health care provider na tatangging magbigay ng RH service batay sa kanyang ethical o religious beliefs na mag-refer ng pasyente sa isa pang health worker.

- Section 23-b na nagpa­parusa sa mga public officer na magbabawal o maglilimita sa pagkakaloob ng RH service at tatangging maglaan ng pondo para sa RH service.

- Bahagi ng Section 17 na nagtatakda na prerequisite sa PhilHealth accreditation ng mga health care service provider ang pagkakaloob ng 48 oras kada taon na pro bono RH service sa mga mahihirap na pasyente.

- Section 3.01 (a) at (j) ng IRR ng RH Law, partikular na ang paggamit ng salitang “primarily” sa probisyon na tumutukoy sa kahulugan ng abortifacient dahil ito ay taliwas umano sa itinatakda ng Section 4-a ng RH Law at lumalabag din sa Section 12 ng Article 2 ng Konstitusyon.

- Section 23-a-2-ii na nagpaparusa sa mga health service provider na mag-oobliga ng parental consent sa mga menor de edad na wala naman sa emergency o serious situations.

* * *

Disyembre 2012 nang lagdaan ni Pangulong Benigno ‘Noynoy’ Aquino III ang RH Law na magbibigay ng access sa publiko para sa natural at artificial family planning, ang nasabing batas ay sinasabing sagot para maiwasan ang unwanted pregnancies at maternal deaths na dala umano ng kawalang alam sa usaping sekswal, mariing tinu­tutulan ng Simbahan ang nasabing batas dahil na rin sa labag umano ito sa utos ng Diyos partikular ang pagkitil sa buhay ng hindi pa naisisilang na sanggol, tutol din ang Simbahan sa pagbibigay ng mga contraceptives.

Labing-apat na petisyon ang inihain sa SC kontra sa RH Law kung saan agad na inaksyunan ito ng mga mahistrado sa pamamagitan ng pagpa­palabas ng status quo ante order noong Marso 2013 at nang mapaso ito noong Hulyo 2013 ay muling pinalawig ang nasabing kautusan.

Baket ba parang napakahalagang batas na ito na ang layunin naman ay ang kalusogan ng mga ina sa ating bansa?

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hvp (04.09.14)

 

Readers who missed a column can access www.duckyparedes.com/blogs. This is updated daily. Your reactions are welcome at duckyparedes@gmail.com or you can send me a message through Twitter @diretsahan.