Saturday, March 31, 2007

Is Tanglad a cure for cancer?

"Tanglad" is a Cebuano term for lemon grass. It is said to produce an inviting aroma that is why Tanglad is the main spice you see inside the hallow stomach of lechon. That long green grass that is folder and placed inside roasted pig? That's Tanglad.
There is a claim that Tanglad can cure cancer. This has been reportedly tested with positive results in Israel. The following article I picked up from my inbox tells about the curative effects of Tanglad.
I supposed Elln Tordesillas, a columnist of the Malaya, a cancer patient herself, wrote about this.
By the way, despite Ellen's condition, she was not spared by the First Gentleman from his libel suits agasint journalist. Ellen is a respondent in one of the first gentleman's libel suits.
Here is that article about Tanglad:

Fresh lemon grass
While I was undergoing chemotherapy for ovarian cancer, my oncologist, Dr. Cecilia Llave, suggestedthat I try tanglad (lemon grass) for a drink, a tip she got from one of her patients.
That’s what I have been doing the past three years. I don’t know if tanglad has something to do with it butso far I’m okay.
A few weeks ago, an article on the medicinal powers of tanglad went the rounds of internet.
There’s no harm trying this. A bunch of tanglad is ten centavos. Or you can plant it in your backyard for a steady supply.= = =
The article is by Allison Kaplan Sommer:
"At first, Benny Zabidov, an Israeli agriculturalist who grows greenhouses full of lush spices on apastoral farm in Kfar Yedidya in the Sharon region, couldn’t understand why so many cancer patients fromaround the country were showing up on his doorstep asking for fresh lemon grass."
It turned out that their doctors had sent them."
‘They had been told to drink eight glasses of hot water with fresh lemongrass steeped in it on the daysthat they went for their radiation and chemotherapy treatments," Zabidov told ISRAEL21c.
"And this is theplace you go to in Israel for fresh lemon grass.’
"It all began when researchers at Ben Gurion University of the Negev discovered last year that thelemon aroma in herbs like lemon grass kills cancer cells in vitro, while leaving healthy cells unharmed."
The research team was led by Dr. Rivka Ofir and Prof Yakov Weinstein, incumbent of the Albert Katz Chair in Cell-Differentiatio n and Malignant Diseases, from the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at BGU.
"Citral is the key component that gives the lemony aroma and taste in several herbal plants such as lemongrass (Cymbopogon citratus), melissa (Melissa officinalis) and verbena (Verbena officinalis. )"
According to Ofir, the study found that citral causes cancer cells to ‘commit suicide: using apoptosis, amechanism called programmed cell death."A drink with as little as one gram of lemon grass contains enough citral to prompt the cancer cells tocommit suicide in the test tube."
The BGU investigators checked the influence of the citral on cancerous cells by adding them to bothcancerous cells and normal cells that were grown in a petri dish.
The quantity added in the concentrate was equivalent to the amount contained in a cup of regular tea using one gram of lemon herbs in hot water.
While the citral killed the cancerous cells, the normal cells remained unharmed.
"The findings were published in the scientific journal Planta Medica, which highlights research onalternative and herbal remedies. Shortly afterwards, the discovery was featured in the popular Israeli press.
"Why does it work? Nobody knows for certain, but the BGU scientists have a theory."
‘In each cell in our body, there is a genetic program which causes programmed cell death. When something does wrong, the cells divide with no control and become cancer cells. In normal cells, when the cell discovers that the control system is not operating correctly - for example, when it recognizes that acell contains faulty genetic material following cell division - it triggers cell death," explains Weinstein.
"This research may explain the medical benefit of these herbs.’"The success of their research led them to the conclusion that herbs containing citral may beconsumed as a preventative measure against certain cancerous cells."
As they learned of the BGU findings in the press, many physicians in Israel began to believe that whilethe research certainly needed to be explored further, in the meantime it would be advisable for theirpatients, who were looking for any possible tool to fight their condition, to try to harness the cancer-destroying properties of citral.
"That’s why Zabidov’s farm - the only major grower of fresh lemon grass in Israel - has become a pilgrimage destination for these patients. Luckily, they found themselves in sympathetic hands. Zabidov greets visitors with a large kettle of aromatic lemon grass tea, a plate of cookies, and a supportive attitude."
‘My father died of cancer, and my wife’s sister died young because of cancer," said Zabidov.
"So Iunderstand what they are dealing with. And I may not know anything about medicine, but I’m a good listener. And so they tell me about their expensive painful treatments and what they’ve been through. I would never tell them to stop being treated, but it’s great that they are exploring alternatives and drinking the lemon grass tea as well."
"Zabidov knew from a young age that agriculture was his calling.
At age 14, he enrolled in the KfarHayarok Agricultural high school. After his army service, he joined an idealistic group which headedsouth, in the Arava desert region, to found a new moshav (agricultural settlement) called Tsofar."
‘We were very successful; we raised fruits and vegetables, and," he notes with a smile, "We raisedsome very nice children."
"On a trip to Europe in the mid-80s, he began to become interested in herbs.Israel, at the time, was nothing like the trend-conscious cuisine-oriented country it is today,and the only spices being grown commercially were basics like parsley, dill, and coriander.
"Wandering in the Paris market, looking at the variety of herbs and spices, Zabidov realized that there was a great export potential in this niche. He brought samples back home with him, "which was technicallyillegal," he says with a guilty smile, to see how they would grow in his desert greenhouses.
Soon, he was growing basil, oregano, tarragon, chives, sage, marjoram and melissa, and mint just to name a few."
His business began to outgrow his desert facilities, and so he decided to move north, settling in themoshav of Kfar Yedidya, an hour and a half north of Tel Aviv.
He is now selling "several hundred kilos" oflemon grass per week, and has signed with a distributor to package and put it in health food stores."Zabidov has taken it upon himself to learn more about the properties of citral, and help his customers learn more, and has invited medical experts to his farm to give lectures about how the citral works and why."
He also felt a responsibility to know what to tell his customers about its use. ‘When I realized what washappening, I picked up the phone and called Dr. Weinstein at Ben-Gurion University, because thesepeople were asking me exactly the best way to consume the citral.
He said to put the loose grass in hotwater, and drink about eight glasses each day.’
"Zabidov is pleased by the findings, not simply because it means business for his farm, but because itmight influence his own health.
"Even before the news of its benefits were demonstrated, he and his family had been drinking lemon grass in hot water for years, ‘just because it tastes good.

Inday Nita Daluz

Many of you may not be familiar with the name.
But if the name rings a bell, then you must be above 35 years of age.
Inday Nita Daluz is an icon of Philippine media, particuarly among the promdi's like me in the Visayas region.
She rose to national prominence at the height of the Marcos dictatorship.
Cebu's Inday Nita, fierce, fiery, was an iron lady freedom-fighter who stood against the repressive martial law regime.
She used the microphone as her weapon against the blazing guns of the Marcos military.
During martial law, Inday Nita Daluz braved the cold threats of the Marcos government, weathering military raids of the radio stations where Inday Nita tirelessly broadcast her tirades against Marcos.
Inday Nita never wavered even if she was jailed by Marcos because she dared to speak against the establishment.
Today, I met Inday Nita Daluz for the very first time in her home in Sun Valley, Cebu.
She has visibly aged, although without the white hair. Already calm and soft-spoken, and none of those fierce looks of a fighter, Inday Nita in her late sixties, sat on a wheelchair.
I didn't ask her why she no longer walks. She voluntered to show me her left leg, amputated just below the knee, owing to the merciless scourge of diabetes.
For me, it was a privilege to see Inday Nita, for I listened to her constantly on AM radio as a young boy, without fear castigating a dictator every day on the air.
Yesterday I never let the ocassion pass. I wanted to speak to her at length, to listen to her words of wisdom and her experiences as a broadcaster in Cebu during the dark days of martial law.
She obliged.
We talked for two hours. I asked her questions, and questions, one after the other about her life as a maverick media person in Cebu.
Yes, in her prime, her name was a by-word in Cebu, specially from among the downtrodden, whom many would refer as the "masa".
I told her that I will write about her exciting experiences because it is worth recording in black and white.
Sadly, I didn't bring my tape recorder and camera. So I will have to record our conversation based on my recollection.
I asked her what her life's greatest contribution was, she eloquently said she helped keep the flickering flame alive in the midst of darkness so many could see the pathway from bondage to freedom.
More of Inday Nita's travails in my succeeding blogs....

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Metrolaw alternative

I was reminded about an alternative law office that a practioner can opt for.
This reminder came when one of my law school classmates offered me a partnership because his law partnership dissolved, and he wants to have a functioning law office.
I broached the idea of Metrolaw.
This is not a new thing. As a matter of fact, this has been going on for years already in Manila.
The Metrolaw concept provides a law office solution for lawyers without the hassles of overhead.
There is a monthly subscription fee. With this monthly subscription, a lawyer can have secretarial services, coneference facilities for clients, computer access, mail services, etc. There wil be an office address within the center of commerce in Ortigas, phone and fax facilities.
This would be a good alternative to putting up a law office which will required overhead expenses like utilities, rent, secretary, etc.
However, before a lawyer subscribes to this Metrolaw concept, he should make sure he knows what are the inclusions, and those which will be on a pay-per-use basis.
One advatange with the Metrolaw office solution, is its flexibility.
The service can be customized in accordance with the lawyer's office needs.
If I were to relocate to my hometown physically, this Metrolaw concept would I think be practical because I can maintain a "law office" in Manila, even if I am based somewhere else.
This would be practical, instead of maintaining my own law office and be saddled with overhead expenses.
I would customize it in a way that the secretary would be "on-line" with skype or yahoo messenger so I can keep in touch throughout the day.
This should be something my classmate should consider, with his predicament now.
By the way I recall that my Canadian client, was physically based in Vancouver, and he had an "office" in Washington D.C.
When I called his D.C. office, a secretary was there to answer. I also sent correspondences to that D.C. office. I even gave that as an office address for clients in Eastern U.S.A.
I later learned that it was an office similar to the Metrolaw concept.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Bribing media during elections

Here in the Philippines, it is election season.
This is a financially promising time for some (or many?) journalists.
This is the sad reality of life.
As I pondered upon this election season, I recall a few years back when I was very active as a journalist back home.
It was election time also and as a news reporter, I covered a political gathering of local candidates.
After a while I was about to leave the affair, the top local candidate (I won't even mention what local elective position he was running for) went to me and handed to me a cheap, lousy, political T-shirt and something else ---yes, cash, of course (to add to the T-shirt).
Those shirts are good for one or two wears, after which the paint gradually rips itself off.
It wasn't really a tough situation for me because I was not acceding to the offer.
But what made the situation tough was on HOW to reject the offer.
You see, it also requires tact to reject a bribe.
You do not appear popish, visibly self-righteous, and embarass the "honorable" briber in front of other people.
The better way I think is to discreetly, but decently reject a discreetly indecent proposal.
By the way, I noticed that the other candidates were secretly keeping an eye on me, and trying to see whether I was a bribe receiver. (If they saw me receiving bribe, I think the other candidates would have folowed suit and bribed me also).
The candidate tried to insist the cash to my hand, to no avail.
In the end I was able to successfully ward off the cash, but I 'appeased' him by just getting the T-shirt.
The obvious reason why candidates, during election time, bribe media people is because they want favorable coverage in news reports.
That is bad on media's part because a bribed reporter will not be able to report the news objectively and dispassionately.
Later, let me blog about how media management deals with this bribery affair with their reporters.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Korean says Filipinos lack love for country

Here is something I picked from my inbox. It's purportedly coming from a Korean student who commented that the problem of the Philippines is that Filipinos lack love for their country. Here is that email:
Please pass it to all Filipinos you know.
The message goes:

As you know, we have plenty of Koreans currentlystudying in the Philippines to take advantage of our cheaper tuition fees and learn English at the same time.This is an essay written by a Korean student i want to share with you. (Never mind the grammar; it's the CONTENT that counts) Maybe it is timely tothink about this in the midst of all the confusionat present.MY SHORT ESSAY ABOUT THE PHILIPPINES
By Jaeyoun Kim
Filipinos always complain about the corruption inthe Philippines . Do you really think the corruption is the problem of the Philippines ? I do not think so. I strongly believe that the problem isthe lack of love for the Philippines .

Let me first talk about my country, Korea . It might help you understand my point. After the Korean War, South Korea was oneof the poorest countries in the world. Koreans had to start from scratch because entire country wasdestroyed after the Korean War, and we had nonatural resources.Koreans used to talk about the Philippines , for Filipinos were very rich in Asia . We envy Filipinos. Koreans really wanted to be well off likeFilipinos.
Many Koreans died of famine. My father & brother also died because of famine. Korean government was very corrupt and is still verycorrupt beyond your imagination, but Korea wasable to develop dramatically because Koreans really did their best for the common good with their heartburning with patriotism.
Koreans did not work just for themselves but alsofor their neighborhood and country. Education inspired young men with the spirit of patriotism.
40 years ago, President Park took over thegovernment to reform Korea . He tried to borrow money from other countries, but it was not possible to get aloan and attract a foreign investment because theeconomic situation of South Korea was so bad. Korea had only three factories.
So, President Park sent many mine workers and nurses to Germany so thatthey could send money to Korea to build a factory. They had to go through horrible experience.In 1964, President Park visited Germany to borrowmoney. Hundred of Koreans in Germany came to the airport to welcome him and cried there as they saw the President Park .
They asked to him, "President,when can we be well off?" That was the only question everyone asked to him. President Park cried withthem and promised them that Korea would be well off if everyone works hard for Korea , and the President of Germany got the strong impression on themand lent money to Korea .
So, President Park was able to build many factories in Korea . He always asked Koreans to love their country from their heart. Many Korean scientists and engineers in the USA came back to Korea to help developing country because they wanted their country to be well off.
Though they received very small salary, they did theirbest for Korea . They always hoped that their children would live in well off country.My parents always brought me to the places wherepoor and physically handicapped people live.
They wanted me to understand their life and help them. I also worked for Catholic Church when I was in the army. The only thing I learned from Catholic Church was that wehave to love our neighborhood.
And, I have loved my neighborhood. Have you cried for thePhilippines? I have cried for my country several times.
I also cried for the Philippines because of so manypoor people. I have been to the New Bilibidprison. What made me sad in the prison were theprisoners who do not have any love for their country. They go to mass and work for Church. They pray everyday.
However, they do not love the Philippines . I talked to two prisoners at the maximum-security compound, and both of them said that they would leave thePhilippines right after they are released from theprison. They said that they would start a new life in other countries and never come back to the Philippines .
Many Koreans have a great love for Korea so that we were able to share our wealth with our neighborhood.
The owners of factory and company were distributed their profit to their employees fairly so that employees couldbuy what they needed and saved money for thefuture and their children.
When I was in Korea , I had a very strong faith andwanted to be a priest. However, when I came to the Philippines ,I completely lost my faith. I was very confused when I saw many unbelievablesituations in the Philippines .
Street kids always make me sad, and I see them everyday. The Philippines is the only Catholic country in Asia , but there are too many poor people here. People go to church every Sunday to pray, but nothing has been changed.
My parents came to the Philippines last week and saw this situation. They told me that Korea was much poorer than the present Philippines when theywere young.
They are so sorry that there are somany beggars and street kids. When we went to Pasangjan, I forced my parents to take a boat becauseit would fun. However, they were not happy aftertaking a boat. They said that they would not take the boat again because they were sympathized theboatmen, for the boatmen were very poor and had asmall frame. Most of people just took a boat and enjoyed it.
But, my parents did not enjoy it because of lovefor them.
My mother who has been working for Catholic Churchsince I was very young told me that if we just go to mass without changing ourselves, we are not Catholic indeed. Faith should come with action.
She added that I have to love Filipinos and do good things for them because all of us are same and have received a great love from God. I want Filipinos to love their neighborhood and country as much as they love God so that the Philippines will be well off.
I am sure that love is the keyword, which Filipinosshould remember. We cannot change the sinful structure at once. It should start from person. Love must start in everybody, in a s mall scale and have to grow.
A lot ofthings happen if we open up to love. Let's put awayour prejudices and look at our worries with our new eyes.I discover that every person is worthy to beloved.
Trust in love, because it makes changes possible. Love changes you and me. It changes people, contexts and relationships. It changes the world. Please love yourneighborhood and country.Jesus Christ said that whatever we do to others wedo to Him.
In the Philippines , there is God for people who are abused and abandoned. There is God who is crying for love. If you have a child, teach them how to love the Philippines . Teach them why they have to love their neighborhood and country. You already know that God also will be very happy if you love others.That's all I really want to ask you Filipinos.

Technician - Sr Test/Engr
Network Enabled Solutions (NES)
Q62403 - Manufacturing Systems
150 Parish Drive Wayne NJ 07470
Tel. no. 973-305-2017 [2024/2710]

Thursday, March 22, 2007

My roots in La Libertad

My parentage is in La Libertad, a sleepy (but lately bloody) town north of Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental.
My paternal great-great grandparents (maternal grandparents of my paternal grandfather) come from this town.
I frequented this town when I was a young kid. My grandfather, the late Atty. Zoilo D. Dejaresco Jr., used to take us with him when he paid homage on special ocassions.
I remember the last time I visited the town was when I went with my aunts and uncles to make a look-see of some pieces of land handed down by their parents.
My grandfather, in his book "Life's poignant memories" wrote about his parentage:


"My parents were Zoilo Dejaresco Sr., a businessman-son of Silverio Dejaresco of Dumangas, Iloilo and Faustina Medes of Victorias, Negros Occidental; and Bebina Dionaldo, daughter of Isaac Dionaldo and Tomasa Facturan of La Libertad, Negros Oriental.
"A former town president of Jimalalud, Isaac became the first municipal president of the newly created town of La Libertad. Driven by intense patriotic fervor, this dynamic public official christened the new town to connote "liberty" - a new concept in governance which triggered the advent of nationalism following the enactment of the Jones Law by the Congress of the United States granting autonomous rights to the residents of American colonies like the Philippines.
"My father was a successful businessman. He owned two big sailboats which traded different basic commodities coming from Mindanao and the Visayan Islands including Masbate, Romblon, Palawan, the Bicol provinces and as far as Borneo.
"The two sailboats were so big and were longer than the width of the La Libertad River.
"The vessels were named "Victorias" and "Victorioso". The flagship was christened "Victorias" named after my father's birthplace, a town in Negros Occidental.
"The flagship was skippered by my father himself while the "Victorioso" was piloted by my father's younger brother, Panfilo. They were daring seafarers who were experienced sailors during their younger days.
"When these two vessels would return to the home port after a business trip, the occasion transformed the sleepy fledgling town into a buzzling market of commercial activities among its buinesss-minded inhabitants. Products and merchandise from different islands were unloaded which converted the town into a huge commercial fair. Various merchandise, most of them rarely found in ordinary town markets, were sold or bartered with cereals such as corn, rice, and sugar which were in turn traded to the neighboring islands during the next business trip."

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

La Libertad massacre survivors identify killers

Three of the killers who massacred a group of innocent civilians while riding a Cobra truck in La Liberated town have been positively identified by survivors of the bloody ordeal.
This came after four of the massacre survivors were placed in the custody of the Philippine National Police outside of La Libertad.
The survivors are now in a police safehouse. They have already issued statements to investigators. According to one of the survivors, he positively identified three of the gunmen who straffed the cargo truck they were riding.
The names of the identified suspects have been withheld by authorities pending further investigation.

A survivor said the killers already identified were "locals".
This reporter was able to personally interview the witnesses, whom he will not name for security reasons.

Motive: Politics

Politics has been eyed as the probable motive for the massacre. The victims of the straffing were innocent civilians who were at the wrong place at the wrong time.
There were telltale signs that politics was the motive.
One of the survivors said that he had previously seen the three identified suspects in the company of a local politician.
Another survivor recounted that right after they were shot at, two other gunmen, who were not yet identified, came over to her and told her “pasensiya na, si kapitan ang among tuyo.”(Sorry. It is kapitan whom we are after)
One of the seven killed was Ledio Baylon, a barangay captain of Barangay Aya, La Liberted.

Target: Barangay Captain

From the statements of the witnesses, it can be gathered that it was the barangay captain who was the lone target, and the other innocent civilians killed and injured were merely collateral damage.
The civilians who were killed and injured were mostly poor farmers, residents of Barangay Aya which is one of the farthest barangay of La Libertad.
They boarded the cargo truck, which was used as a service vehicle to transport residents for free.
Some of the victims came from a two-day forestry seminar in barangay San Jose undertaken by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
Unfortunately, the barangay captain, the lone target, was also on board the said vehicle.
Barangay captain Ledio Baylon was a respected leader in barangay Aya. He was a supporter of Jocylen Sy Limkaichong, the incumbent mayor of La Libertad.
According to one witness, a resident of barangay Aya, barangay capatain Baylon delivered all the votes of his barangay to Jocelyn in the previous election. The opponent got zero, said one witness.
For this coming elections, there has been an increase of registered voters of barangay Aya, now numbering 660, and likely, barangay captain Baylon would have once again delivered these votes for Limkaichong and her partymates.
He was killed so that he will no longer be able to deliver those votes, said the witness.

Local politico

According to one witness, he had seen three of the identified suspects in the company of a local politician in La Libertad who has lost in previous elections, and is reportedly running again in the May polls.
The witness said he once saw the suspects with the local politico while undergoing barangay visitations.
There is however, no evidence of any direct link between the suspects and the politician in the massacre.
The politician, the witness said, is a now-you-see-now-you-don’t figure in the town. He surfaces when elections are coming, the witness said added.

Armed to the teeth

What baffles investigators was the way the massacre was executed.
The killers were reportedly using a grenade launcher, 9 MM, 45 caliber, Danao-made machine guns.
Investigators based these on the bullet shells recovered in the scene of the crime.
They recovered a total of 119 empty 9 MM shells. These excludes the other guns used, one investigator said.
They apparently had one target only, yet it looked like the perpetrators were engaged in a gunbattle.

Not the handiwork of NPAs

Investigators also said reports have been circulating that the massacre was the handiwork of the communist rebels New Peoples’ Army (NPA).
However, investigators are not taking this very seriously, as this could be an effort to mislead the investigation.
It was even reported that leaflets have been circulated around town trying to pin the blame to the NPA.
But one of the survivors debunked this NPA angle saying those aboard the truck were not enemies of the NPA.
One witness said,,“Wala mi gi-kontra sa mga NPA sukad,” (WE have never been enemies of the NPA ever since)
In rejecting the NPA angle, the witness noted that the massacre was committed near the town poblacion.
The massacre was executed in barangay Manluminsag which is just three barangays away from the poblacion.
If the NPAs were really behind the killings, then they would have done their act in Barangay Aya, not in barangay Manluminsag which is near the poblacion.
Barangay Manluminsag is the third barangay from the poblacion, after barangays Talyog and Manbulawon.

There were warnings

One of the witnesses recounted that just prior to the massacre on March 9, there were subtle warnings made by a certain person whom she postiviely identified..
The witness said that one person she recalls said, “Sa Marso daghan matumba. Inig buto, kuwarta,”(In March many will fall. Upon explosion, there’s money).
The same witness also recounted that just prior to March 9, she was aboard the truck on the way home.
The witness overheard another person whom she named, talking in his cell phone.
The witness heard the person saying they could not carry out their activity because they were in a cockfight.

At large

After the three suspects have been identified, probers confirmed that these suspects are still at large.
They are from the area, as relayed by one witness.
Investigators said they will file the cases in court as soon as the probe is finished.

Monday, March 19, 2007

La Libertad killings: It was a massacre, not an ambush

It was a friend who is member of the Philippine National Police who told me that what happened in La Libertad town last March 9, 2007, where seven innocent civilians were killed, was not an ambush but a massacre.
An agency of the Philippine National Police, which I will not reveal at this time, is already on top of the situation conducting an intense investigation into the massacre.
As has been published in the local papers, seven innocent civilians were killed when unidentified gunmen using a grenade launcher, machine guns and pistols opened fire at the truck they were riding while they were on their way home to a far flung barangay in the town of La Libertad at around 5:30 p.m. last March 9.
This case got my attention because my paternal grandparent was a native of La Liberatd. We have so many relatives in that sleepy town, more than one hundred kilometers north of Dumaguete City Negros Oriental.
I was able to meet some of the victims fortunate enough to survive the fatal ordeal, and lived to tell their harrowing tales.
I will report on the incident, and what the witnesses told me. The witnesses, six of them are now housed in a secure place and are under the custody of authorities. Their statements are now being documented, and will be used as basis in filing multiple murder charges against the perpetrators.

Sunday, March 18, 2007


Fr. Joaquin G. Bernas, S.J. officiated the anticipated mass yesterday that the Ateneo chapel at Rockwell. Yesterday's scripture was the Gospel according to Luke on the parable of the prodigal son.
Incidentally, "Fr. B", as we used to call him during our law school days, was my professor in constitutional law. He is Dean Emeritus of the Ateneo Law School.
Fr. Bernas in his homily took note that Jesus delivered the parable as he was among tax collectors. In those times, tax collectors were living symbols of sin and sinful acts, and Jesus never dissociated himself among tax collectors. As a matter of fact, one of his disciples was a tax collector.
Fr. Bernas said that in his case, he is always in the company of lawyers and would-be lawyers.
In his reflections of the parable of the prodigal son, Fr. Bernas said that the parable is about the un-fathomable depth of forgiveness of the Father towards his son.
It impels upon the people to also evoke a similar gesture of forgiveness on others.
Father Bernas however, said that those who usually seem to feel they do not have "bigtime sins", are the ones who do not see the real essence of forgiveness.

Ambivalence on human rights?

Koko Pimentel hits GMA snub
on issue of extrajudicial killings

Genuine Opposition senatorial candidate Koko Pimentel today criticized President Arroyo for trivializing the spate of extrajudicial killings of activists and journalists country, saying this only shows the President’s ambivalence towards human rights issues.
This was Koko Pimentel’s reaction when President Arroyo relegated the issue of extrajudicial killings as mere “political issues” fit only for a subordinate to respond.
The President was quoted by news reported to have said that “Political issues are for my spokesman to answer,” when sought a reaction to U.S. Senate hearing on extrajudicial killings in the Philippines.
“It is unwise for the President to categorize the very serious matter of unsolved extrajudicial killings as mere ‘political issues’ to be answered only by her press secretary,” Koko Pimentel emphasized.
“This issue of unsolved extrajudicial killings here in our country has already gotten attention of the highest levels of the United States government, the world’s only superpower,” Koko Pimentel noted.
“Yet, Gloria Arroyo appears to be sweeping these important matters under the rug, and relegates them as mere political issues fit only for her press secretary to respond,” Pimentel said.
Koko Pimentel, a staunch human rights legal advocate, said the President’s attitude of ambivalence towards the burning issue of extrajudicial killings only portrays her as having no concern at all for the promotion of human rights in this part of the world.
The President herself must take a hands-on attitude in resolving these cases of extrajudicial killings, considering that her administration has been criticized for “not doing enough” to abate these killings of civilians, Koko Pimentel said.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Repblicanism and political dynasty: Balance of interests

The Will of the Sovereign

Republicanism, democracy
and political dynasties:
Balancing the interests

In our democracy, the sovereign decide and define what a political dynasty is.
Much has been said about the constitutional provision that seeks to prohibit political dynasties, “as may be defined by law.”
It is found in the Section 26, Article II, the declaration of principles.
“The state shall guarantee equal access to opportunities for public service, and prohibit political dynasties as may be defined by law.”
While the sovereign has adopted the principle to prohibit political dynasties. It is the same sovereign who have decided, and will continue to decide what should be, and should not be deemed political dynasties.
The constitutional principle which seeks to prohibit political dynasties is not the only interest that must be protected. While constitution adopts a policy that would prohibit political dynasties in order to guarantee equal opportunities for public service, there are paramount interests that must never curtailed in pursuit of these interests.
The other compelling interest: Republicanism and democracy
There is a paramount principle that Filipinos have adopted in the 1987 constitution. This is our adoption of the principle of republicanism. Section 1, Article II of the constitution, the same article where the prohibition against political dynasties, provides:

"The Philippines is a republican a democratic state. Sovereignty resides in the people and all government authority emanates from them."

The Philippines as a republican state, is anchored on the principle that supreme power rests in the body of the people. Republicanism more simply means a state that establishes a government of the people, by the people and for the people.
The constitution likewise characterizes our country not only as a republican state, but also a democratic state.
Many believe there is not much difference. If there is, the difference lies in emphasis. This was what the 1986 constitutional commission highlighted during its deliberations on this important principle. In inserting the word “democratic” apart from the word “republican”, commissioner Nollledo came up with a description of the insertion as a “pardonable redundancy”
But Commissioner Adolf Azcuna (now justice of the Supreme Court) hit the nail on the head by stressing that the word “democratic” is significant because it emphasizes that our country is one that is participatory in nature. We do not only elect representatives upon whom sovereign power is delegated. The people themselves reserve their right to directly participate in the affairs of state and governance such as voting in elections, plebiscite, initiative, referendum, setting up people organizations. All these have been enshrined in our constitution. The word “democratic” in our constitution is to institutionalize and to capture the spirit of “people power.”

Elections and Direct Democratic participation

Chief Justice Renato Puno said in his dissent in Arturo M Tolentino versus Comelec (January 21, 2004):
“An outstanding feature of the 1987 Constitution is the expansion of the democratic space giving the people greater power to exercise their sovereignty.
“Thus, under the 1987 Constitution, the people can directly exercise their sovereign authority through the following modes, namely: (1) elections; (2) plebiscite; (3) initiative; (4) recall; and (5) referendum. Through elections, the people choose the representatives to whom they will entrust the exercise of powers of government.
“The electoral process is one of the linchpins of a democratic and republican framework because it is through the act of voting that government by consent is secured. Through the ballot, people express their will on the defining issues of the day and they are able to choose their leaders in accordance with the fundamental principle of representative democracy that the people should elect whom they please to govern them.
“Voting has an important instrumental value in preserving the viability of constitutional democracy. It has traditionally been taken as a prime indicator of democratic participation.
“The existence of the right of suffrage is a threshold for the preservation and enjoyment of all other rights that it ought to be considered as one of the most sacred parts of the constitution.
In Geronimo v. Ramos, et al., we held that the right is among the most important and sacred of the freedoms inherent in a democratic society and one which must be most vigilantly guarded if a people desires to maintain through self-government for themselves and their posterity a genuinely functioning democracy in which the individual may, in accordance with law, have a voice in the form of his government and in the choice of the people who will run that government for him

Republican, representative

Our republican state is representative in nature. The people elect their representatives in government who exercise delegated power.
We may define a republic to be a government which derives all its power directly or indirectly from the great body of the people; and is administered by persons holding offices during pleasure, for a limited period, or during good behavior.
That is why the power to make laws, or to legislate, originally is a power vested in the people themselves. Yet under our constitution these powers are delegated and granted to representatives in the House and in the Senate.
Senators, congressmen, therefore as lawmakers, exercise derivative legislative powers. As representatives of the sovereign---the Filipino people---they cannot legislate against what the sovereign themselves have adopted as a policy.

Political dynasties: A policy in the constitution

When the Filipino people ratified the constitution in 1987, they adopted a principle to prohibit political dynasties.
But at the same time, the Filipino people themselves, in the exercise of their sovereign capacities, and as part of the democratic scheme, through the exercise of their right of suffrage, have decided what should be, and what should not be a political dynasty.
No agent, or delegate, should have the unwarranted arrogance to pronounce a dynasty when the sovereign has declared otherwise. To borrow a basic principal in law, the spring cannot rise above its source. If it does, it is the height of misplaced arrogance, the arrogance of claiming that he or she has better judgment than the rest of the Filipino people.

Filipinos' definition: political dynasty

Let us now re-visit how the Filipino people have defined what should be or should not be a political dynasty, through their exercise of the right of suffrage, which is a component of direct participatory democracy, a principle adopted in Section 1 Article II of the Constitution.
As far as the senate is concerned, the sovereign Filipino people have elected the following, aware of, and in the midst of the principle seeking to prohibit political dynasties:

A. Mother and son, as both incumbents: Senator Loi Estrada and Jinggoy Estrada
B. Father-in-law and son-in-law as incumbents: Senators Ramon Revilla and Sonny Jaworski
C. First cousins as incumbents: Senators John Osmena and Sergio Osmena
D. Father and son, successively: Senator Ramon Revilla and Bong Revilla
E. Father and daughter successively: Senator Renato Cayetano and Pia Cayetano

Amidst, or inspite of the principle seeking to prohibit political dynasties, the Filipino people, the ultimate repository of sovereign power in a republican and democratic state, , have decided on who or what should not be deemed a political dynasty.
We are talking only of the Senate. There is a need to further look into how the sovereign have decided on what should not be a political dynasties in other elective public offices like the House of Representatives and local elective positions.
Thus, for those well-meaning intellects who intend to file bills giving flesh to the constitutional provision seeking to prohibit political dynasties, they must be guided fully and at all times on the parameters that have been laid down by the sovereign, through their exercise of direct participatory democracy.
No individual mortal must define, for his or her own preference or convenience, what a political dynasty is. He is merely particle of the democratic space who must respect the voice of the sovereign. No one can go against the will and mandate of the sovereign.
Everyone must all work hand in hand to create a law prohibiting political dynasties, based on the policies laid down by the people themselves in the past elections.

In the case of Koko Pimentel, his participation in the Senatorial race does not contravene the constitutional principle against political dynasty.
The sovereign people have already decided that for a parent and child to be both incumbents in the Senate, does not constitute a political dynasty. Experience tells it. History validates it.
When the people elected Senator Loi Estrada and Jinggoy Estrada, it was the people themselves who declared this is allowed, and this does not constitute a political dynasty.
There is no substantial difference between the Loi-Jinggoy experience and the Nene-Koko experiment. To say that there is, will create an invalid classification, which violates of the equal protection clause.
No one should say it is immoral. The sovereign Filipino people don’t consider it immoral.
They declared it when they exercised their power of direct participatory democracy---in the elections--- in pursuit of Section 1, Article II of the constitution which states that “the Philippines is republican and democratic state. Sovereignty resides in the people and all government authority emanates from them.

“A little more faith [in the people]”

Commissioner Christian Monsod, also former Comelec Commissioner put it correctly during the deliberations of the constitutional commission:

“Mr. Presiding Officer, as we said before, the assumption here seems to be that we are underestimating our people in their right to choose; we are trying to put a prescreening mechanism so that public office is not after all accessible to all because we are going to prohibit or exclude certain people from running for public office. And my point is, we should have a little more faith. Now that we have a new COMELEC, the process will be cleaned up, but we should give our people full choice. Let them run and let the people decide. That is the essence of suffrage.”
“...I do no think we should curtail the right of the people to a free choice on who their political leader should be.”

Adding disqualification is unconstitutional, illegal

Commissioner Monsod, who vigorously fought against this provision on political dynasties, and battled hard to delete it, further argued that to prevent people from running will add to the list of disqualifications which would be contrary to the constitution:
“We have in this constitution qualifications of those who seek elective office. We are adding in this section (meaning political dynasty section) a disqualification to those who may aspire after public office, in effect amending various provisions of the constitution which enumerate the qualifications and disqualifications of the law.”

Do we have the right to curtail?

The late Senator Blas Ople, also commissioner of the constitutional commission, said:
“What I feel is an inner demand for logic and rationality so that this provision can be actually attached to some principles of equity without doing violence to the freedom of choice of the voters because they are entitled to as broad a freedom of choice as the environment can provide and if they want somebody to run for office even if he closely related to someone in office, do we have the right to curtail the freedom of the voters?”
Commissioner Abubakar made his view more pointed:
“This Constitutional Commission, composed of intelligent people, people who believe in the dictum that the voice of the people is the voice of God, is very religious. How can we, on the assumption that we are only appointed, or even if we were elected, suppress the voice of the people if they want an elected representative to continue with one, two, three terms? So be it. We are not here to suppress that voice. We are here to give reality and to give substance to what the people want; not to suppress their desire to elect their own representatives for the terms they wanted them to have. So I would presume that this Commission will be able to come up with a constitution that the people can embrace, approve and conceive as a document that looks after their interest, first and foremost. We should not contradict this voice. If a dynasty or a family is wanted by the people to represent them for two terms and another would succeed, who are we to question their choice or their voice? We are here on a constitutional mandate, and let not our power be abused at the expense of the right of the people for I believe in the dictum that the ultimate power lies in the people and the voice of the people is the voice of God.”

Nolledo: limited anti-political dynasty
Tolentino: sparingly

Commissioner Nolledo, self-proclaimed author of the provision seeking to prohibit political dynasties in the constitution, categorcially stated: “I am limiting it only to a situation where the rule against further re-election might be circumvented. That is my suggestions to Congress although the Congress can also widen the meaning of political dynasty.”
It is instructive therefore to heed the call of the revered constitutionalist Senator Arturo Tolentino who wrote in the explanatory note of his bill enacting a law prohibiting political dynasty (S.B. 1919 October 1994). It is a reflection of the intent of the framers of the constitution that pushed for the provision against political dynasty. Tolentino explained:
“Since the idea of excluding political dynasties may be contrary to the democratic principle that the people should be free to select their officials, it should be limited and sparingly applied. Ultimately, the people themselves may break up the dynasties.”
Tolentino went on the correct track to begin this prohibition against presidential relatives. He is all too familiar with this scenario, having had political attachments to the former dictator, and once having been a vice-presidential candidate (vice Imelda?). Tolentino further said:
“A good beginning for the prohibition of political dynasty is in the area of presidential relatives. Unquestionably, the President is the most powerful official of the land and can use vast powers to help in the election of a relative. This, after all, is the basic reason for prohibiting political dynasties.”

Other Senate Bills
There are at least two other Senator bills that have been reflective and responsive of the intention of the framers of the constitution. That is to prohibit the political dynasties among the local elective positions.
We refer to the bills of Senators Miriam Defensor Santiago and Alfredo Lim. Both bills focus on suppressing the perpetual fiefdoms of mini executive officers in the local governments. This was the thrust of the author of the provision against political dynasty, commissioner Nolledo.
The people, the sovereign, decide on what constitutes a political dynasty. Lawmakers, as agents of the sovereign, must enact a law prohibiting political dynasties that is in consistent with, and within the parameters that have been laid down by the sovereign in their exercise of direct democracy..

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Joshua's contract

My eight year old son just never fails to amaze me.
Whlie I was in the thick of doing some legl stuff, he handed me a piece of paper which turned out to be the first very contract he drafted.
It amazes me because I never drafted a contract in my childhood, but here is my son trying to make a written proposal at such an early age.
I'm sure I never taught him any legal matter, surely not at his age.
I think he has just been observant all along. I noticed that the way his numbered his statements, is exactly my style of writing pleadings and contracts.
In his own contract, Joshua proposed that he be allowed to download a program into my computer so he would be able to apply it. He likewise proposed that he be allowed use the computer, and that he be given the right to his confidential password, and that we, as his parents should not undertake any verbal complaints about what he is going to do. He also proposed that the contract is not subject to amendment.
When he gave the paper to me, I told him of my pleseant shock, and that I would have to study his proposal first.
He thought that having to make him wait was a virtual rejection of his contract proposal.
He silently crumpled the paper and threw it to the waste basket.
When I was done with my work, I asked for his contract and he said "Your answer was a big NO."
I asked him where the paper was, and he said he already threw it to the waste basket.
I retrieved the contract and saw the word "no" on the space for my signature.
I told him that I was agreeable to the contract and had no intention of saying "no" to it.
But he was already half asleep by then, and he seemed to be saying: "whatever."

Saturday, March 10, 2007

An Insight on defamation

In the course of handling the libel case faced by my Tito Peter, let me just rattle off some of the insights that I have gained.
I wrote in my blog that my uncle was included as a respondent in a criminal libel case in his capacity as the general manager of the radio station where a radio bloc timer allegedly hurled libelous statements on the air.
Let it be emphasized that the libelous statements that became the basis of a libel complaint were aired on a political bloc time program.
The nature of a bloc time is such that the manager of the radio station, does not have as much control over it contents, as compared to a program under the direction of the radio station.
In a bloc time, an individual or entity buys airtime, like for an hour, or thirty minutes.
The nature of radio, and radio commentary is such that the management of the station does not have the luxury of time to check, verify, evaluate the statements that are uttered by the bloc time broadcaster.
The complainant in the libel case before the prosecutors office is an elected public official, a municipal councilor.
There are certain questions that emerged in my mind.
First, since the management, or the radio station manager is included as respondent in a libel complaint, and considering this is a bloc time program, should it be necesary for the complainant to prove actual malice not only on the part of the bloc timer, but also of the radio station manager?
In other words, should it be required of the complainant to prove that my uncle had actual malice in his being responsible for the airing of libelous staements in a bloc time program?
I believe so.
I belive that theoretically, the prosecution is required to prove that in allowing the supposed libelous defamatory statements to be aired through a bloc time program, the station manager had actual malice, separate and distinct from the requirement of proving actual malice on the part of the actual bloc time speaker.
What is my basis for this?
I think it is proper to review the 1964 New York Times Co. versus Sullivan ruling of the United States Supreme Court.
We can use the New York Times decision as basis for an analogy.
We recall that in the New York Times ruling, it involved allegedly libelous writings in a full page advertisement published in the New York Times.
I am trying to inject similarities between a full-page advertisement with a radio bloc time. The similiarity is that a full-page ad and a bloc time are "spaces" paid for by third parties.
In the New York Times ruling, the public official, L.B. Sullivan who was the complainant, sued both the persons behind the ad, and the New York Times Company as well.
In similar manner, the complainant in my uncle's case sued both the utterer or broadcaster, and the station manager representating the broadcast management.
Again, I am trying to inject similarities here between the New York Times and the radio station of my uncle, in that both were vehicles for the "publication" of the allegedly libelous remarks.
What did the U.S. Supreme Court do in the New York Times ruling?
The Supreme Court proceeded to determine whether or not the New York Times newspaper, in allowing the publication of the full page ad containing allegedl libelous writings, had actual malice in so allowing the publication.
I would like to refer to 376 U.S. 254 286-288 of the New York Times decision.

"As to the Times, we similarly conclude that the facts do not support a finding of actual malice. The statement by the Times' Secretary that, apart from the padlocking allegation, he thought the advertisement was "substantially correct," affords no constitutional warrant for the Alabama Supreme Court's conclusion that it was a "cavalier ignoring of the falsity of the advertisement [from which] the jury could not have but been impressed with the bad faith of The Times, and its maliciousness inferable therefrom." The statement does not indicate malice at the time of the publication; even if the advertisement was not "substantially correct" - although respondent's own proofs tend to show that it was - that opinion was at least a reasonable one, and there was no evidence to impeach the witness' good faith in holding it...

Finally, there is evidence that the Times published the advertisement without checking its accuracy against the news stories in the Times' own files. The mere presence of the stories in the files does not, of course, establish that the Times "knew" the advertisement was false, since the state of mind required for actual malice would have to be brought home to the persons in the Times' organization having responsibility for the publication of the advertisement.

With respect to the failure of those persons to make the check, the record shows that they relied upon their knowledge of the good reputation of many of those whose names were listed as sponsors of the advertisement, and upon the letter from A. Philip Randolph, known to them as a responsible individual, certifying that the use of the names was authorized.

There was testimony that the persons handling the advertisement saw nothing in it that would render it unacceptable under the Times' policy of rejecting advertisements containing "attacks of a personal character"; their failure to reject it on this ground was not unreasonable. We think
the evidence against the Times supports at most a finding of negligence in failing to discover the misstatements, and is constitutionally insufficient to show the recklessness that is required for a finding of actual malice"

What is clear is that in the New York Times ruling, the Supreme Court made a (separate) determination of whether or not there was actual malice on the part of the New York Times newspaper, separate and distinct from the determination of actual malice of the persons responsible for the advertisement.
Applying this procedure to my uncle, I think that in the complaint affidavit itself, there should already be an allegation that the radio station manager had actual malice in allowing the broadcast of alleged liblelous remarks in the bloc time program.
Further, there should be a specific allegation in the comlplaint as to how there was actual malice on the part of the radio station manager.
In the absence of such allegations, I think the complaint is dismissible in the preliminary investigation stage.
In conclusion, let me just state that the stark contrast between the situation in the New York Times ruling and that of my uncle and his radio station is that in the former, it is a print publication. In the latter was broadcast (radio station).
What is the significance of this distinction?
In print publication, like the publication of a full page ad, there was time for a review of the contents of the ad before it was printed, published, and circulated.
In broadcast, specially in commentaries of current events and those of a political nature, there cannot be a pre-broadcast review (by my uncle as the station manager) of what is to be uttered. Otherwise, this would constitute illegal censorship or prior restraint.
Having said this, it would be reasonable to say that, with more reason should the radio station manager be given greater degree of insulation from libel charges when these charges pertain to the allowance of political statements or materials to be aired.
This is because in radio, there is no pre-boroadcast review of contents of the materials to be broadcast, much less censorship or prior restraint.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Integrated Bar innovations

The Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) the recognized association of lawyers in the Philippines has embarked on a new information diseemination scheme using advances of technology like the cellphone.
If a lawyer subscribes or registers with the IBP, he gets update informations about legal developments through text messages.
That is certainly one way of making the IBP relevant to practicing lawyers.
Before, I really don;t know exactly what the IBP has been doing for the benefit of lawyers in the country.
However, they still have to fine tune their "unlawyerly" text message updates because it creates confusion, if not panic to some lawyers like me.
In one expereince, the IBP text update stated: "AM-99-10-05-0 (2-20-2007) SC adopts rule prohibiting the issuance of injunction/TWO against extrajudicial or judicial foreclosure of Real Estate Mortgages."
I panicked over this text message update from the IBP, prompting me to directly go to the website of the Philippine Supreme Court and verify.
As a law practitioner, prohibiting TRO's/injunctions in foreclosure proceedings is a huge matter.
Upon verification, the update was grossly inaccurate as there was really no prohibition, but merely the adoption of stricter rules before trial courts issuance of TROs or injunctions.
A few days later, the IBP apparently seeing their mistake, sent another text message which stated:
"AM-99-10-05-0 (2-20-07) SC adopts strict requirements on issuance of TRO/injunction against foreclosure of real state (sic) mortgage."
From "prohibiting " it has been changed to "strict requirements".
While the first text message included the word "judicial", it was eliminated in the nexgt text message.
The IBP should be conscious about being precise, lest it be accused of engaging in rumour-mongering, and creating panic among colleagues in the profession.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

General Douglas Macarthur's Car

The most notable, if not popular U.S. General in the Philippines, was perhaps, General Douglas MacArthur.
He was commander of the United States Armed Forces of the Far East (USAFFE) during World War II.
A monument in honor of the American general stands in the province of Leyte as an permanent reminder of the of the restoration of democracy in the country upon the defeat of the Japanese Imperial Army that temporarily ruled the Philippines during the second world war.
This afternoon, I was in Quezon City for a hearing and I happened to pass by a bit of history.
I saw, in front of the Quezon City Hall two old, black cars for public display
These cars were the historic vehicles used by President Manuel L. Quezon, and General MacArthur.
One was a 1937 Chrysler Airflow Limousine which became the official car of the Commonwealth President Quezon.
An account says in 1937 the Airflow models were on its final year of making, and 4,600 two-door cars of this model were built , before it was canceled.
This car, was already restored by a noted vintage and car collector named Dan Irish.
The other car was a 1937 Ford Cabriolet, specially built by General Mortors of America, for President Quezon. The car arrived in the Philippines on November 4, 1937.
The following year, it was turned over to General MacArthur who used it throughout his tour of duty in the Philippines.
If these cars could only speak, it would have been able to unleash a wealth of first-hand testimony of the ravages that war brought upon our islands.
Today, it is among the few remnants of those infamous period where thousands of Filipinos were killed, maimed, raped, and traumatized.
Many of those who fought and lived have already passed on to the afterlife due to advanced age.
But these two vehicles still stand and sparkle as two of the last metal pieces that silently witnessed a dark chapter of our nation's history.

Tighter rules vs TROs on foreclosures

The Supreme Court has tightened rules against the issuance of temporary restraining orders and writ of preliminary injunctions in connection with foreclosure of mortgages.
This means that courts are now enjoined to follow certain rules before it decides to issue restraining orders or preliminary injunctions against real estate mortgage foreclosures.
Last February 20, 2007, the Supreme Court adopted A.M. 99-10-05-O laying down the following rules:
First, No temporary restrianing order or writ of preliminary injunction against the extrajudicial foreclosure of real estate mortgage shall be issued on the allegation that the loan secured by the mortgage has been paid or is not delinquent unless the aplication is verified and supported by evidence of payment.
Second, No temporary restraining order or writ of preliminary injunction against the extrajudicial foreclosure of real estate mortgage shall be issued on the allegation that the interest on the loan is inconscionable, unless the debtor pays the mortgage at least twelve percent per annum interest on the principal obligation as stated in the application for foreclosure sale, which shall be updated monthly while the case is pending.
Third, Where a writ of preliminary injunction has been issued agasint a foreclosure of mortgage, the dispositiopn of hte case shall be speedily resolved. To this end, the court concerned shall submit to the Supreme Court through the Office of the Administrator, quarterly reports ont he progress of cases involving ten million pesos and above.
Fourth, All the requirements and restrictions prescribed for the isusance of a temporary restraining order/writ of preliminary injunction, such as the posting of a bond, which shall be equal to the amount of the outstanding debt, and the time limitation for its effectivity, shall apply as well to a status order.
These new rules take effect March 10, 2007.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Another libel case

Another libel case has been referred to me.
This time it involves my uncle Peter who is running the radio station in Tagbilaran Bohol.
The libel, I think is an offshoot of the political season as warring poilitical factions engage in mudslinging, against each other.
Sometimes, the messenger gets stuck in the middle of the crossfire.
As an overview, a municipal councilor was subject of stinging commentaries over the radio station on a bloc-time program.
The bloc-time was paid for by the opponents of the councilor.
The councilor, then files a criminal libel case against the broadcasters or anchors of the bloc time, but included my uncle as the management of the radio station, who allegedly failed to stop these derogatory remarks.
In my phone conversation with my uncle, the complainant and his political allies are also maintaining their own bloc time in another competing station.
So why did he file a libel complaint when the playing field is equal?
I would surmise no one, if at all listens to the complainant's radio bloc time program.
That is why he is resorting to legal moves.
Well, the political cauldron is starting to heat up.