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Gov’t employee told to ask Duterte for permission to conduct photoshoot in Malacañang

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Presidential granddaughter Isabelle Duterte tweeted that anyone can request for a photoshoot in Malacañang just like she did with her pre-debut shoot, but a government employee said that the Palace told him he needed to ask President Rodrigo Duterte or his deputies for permission first.

Amid the bashing that she got for her photoshoot at the Palace, Isabelle replied to one of her detractors that she “sent a request in the office for my photoshoot in Malacañang.”

“Hi dear, I sent a request in the office for my photoshoot in Malacañang, you can actually do the same. If you wanted to book contact them, they also have tours around the Palace for free. Or you can message me and we can do it together. I hope your Nanay will have a happy 50th,” Isabelle said in a tweet.

Even President Duterte himself brushed off the photoshoot as a “small matter,” considering how many guests to the Palace also take pictures.

The 24-year-old government employee said he followed Isabelle’s advice to send a request to Malacañang to arrange an appointment for his prenuptial shoot.

He told the Philippine Daily Inquirer in an exclusive interview that he wanted to know if the Palace can really accommodate him, just like what Isabell said in her tweet.

A screenshot of the government employee’s email addressed to the Malacañang Presidential Museum and Library at [email protected] on December 19 was published by the Inquirer. He said in his email, “My fiancé and I are looking for a historical place to shoot our prenup. Unfortunately, multiple sites has already declined our request. We were about to lose hope with our search until we saw Ms. Isabelle’s pre-debut photoshoot in your premises. Our hope was further strengthened when she, through her Twitter, encouraged us that we can send a request to you to conduct a similar activity/function within your premises.”

Image: Inquirer.net


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He also inquired as to whether he can conduct the shoot “around the week of January 3 to 5, 2018 – or days before our wedding.” He added that nothing can compare to the “seat of the highest official of our government.”

In response, the Palace’s Tour and Visitor Relations Unit responded, saying “The Presidential Museum and Library is only authorized to facilitate tours in the museum located in Kalayaan Hall. Any other activity, especially those of a personal nature, in any location in the Malacañang compound is subject to the approval of the President or his duly-designated deputies,” the email added.

Image: Inquirer.net

 

The government employee told the Inquirer that he expected “to be turned down in some way” because he was a “nobody to be granted a prenup inside the premises of Malacañang.”

Another netizen also tried sending a request to hold pre-event photoshoots and birthday parties in the President’s residence in March and April next year.

She told the Malacañang in an email, “Kindly pencil book these dates and send me what are the areas available for a dinner dance birthday party and how much to use. I am expecting a guest of 300 pax for both dates.”

She added, “Also, kindly include details for a pre-event photo and video shoot 2 months before the party dates.”

In response to the netizen’s request, the Tour and Visitor Relations Unit gave the same response that it sent to the government employee.

The netizen responded to Malacañang and raised Isabelle’s earlier suggestion to a netizen.

“This is most unfortunate especially since Ms. Isabelle Duterte said it is open to the public (moreso for taxpayers like me), following a very much publicized photoshoot for her debut and the baptismal of Robin Padilla’s child,” she wrote.

“But thank you for your response and for clarifying that only the President and his designated Deputies can approve such requests personal use of The Filipino People’s Palace,” she added.

Isabelle’s tweet urging her detractor to send in a request to Malacañang if they also want to book an event in it like her photoshoot led to the creation of a parody page called “Malacañang Events and Catering Services.”

 

Sources: ( newsinfo.inquirer.net )

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Netizens slam Duterte for saying women ‘could not stand threats and intimidation’

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President Rodrigo Duterte drew flak for another controversial comment involving women after he remarked on May 24 that women “could not stand threats and intimidation.”

Duterte said that while he believed in women’s competence, it does not necessarily ring true in all aspects of life.

“I believe in the woman, the competence and capability, pero hindi lahat sa buhay dapat.Hindi ka, hindi, hindi. Dapat lang. It’s not appropriate when you cannot stand threats and intimidation,” he said in his May 24 speech.

He also said that women should be “prim and proper” and talked about his reservation in sending women police and soldiers to the field because unlike men, they did not grow up with a mindset that involves violence.

“Ang mga babae, sundalo pati pulis, ayaw ko ‘yan sa bukid. Unlike men kami, maliit pa lang, suntukan, bakbakan, barilan. And we grew up with a sort of a mindset na sometimes prone to violence. Itong mga babae, prim and proper man ‘yan, isang tingin lang sa nanay niyan, wala na tunaw na ‘yan. Tapos gawin mong pulis, ipaaway mo doon. Naku,” Duterte remarked.

Netizens then took to social media to react to Duterte’s most recent statements, making #BabaeAko trend again on Twitter.

“Mr. President, you just horrifyingly disrespected your own mother who bravely fought against the Marcos dictatorship. She withstood threats and intimidation. Siya ay babae! #BabaeAko,” a Twitter user remarked.

Forensic expert Dr. Raquel Fortun spoke out, too, saying “I am threatened and intimidated a lot. All my life. Don’t me. #BabaeAko.”

So did film and theater actress Chai Fonacier, who said, “Encouraging women — and I mean including those who identify as women — and our friends from the entire spectrum to share your #BabaeAko statements to fight the misogyny that the President and his ilk normalize through their behavior. Make them remember the feminine strength.”

KABATAAN Partylist Rep. Sarah Elago also reacted, saying she refused to be stereotyped.

Former Solicitor General Florin Hilbay urged other Filipinos to protest against Duterte’s misogynistic statements.

Other Twitter users weighed in on the issue.

Duterte’s previous misogynistic remarks

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His remarks in his speech on May 24 seemed to have sought to explain another controversial remark he made on May 16 when he said that he did not want a politician, especially a woman, to become the next Ombudsman.

“Mag-nominate sila, pero I choose, but gusto ko ‘yung bilib ang tao sa integrity niya. Of course it could not be a politician, lalo na hindi babae,” he said during a chance interview.

This gave birth to the launching of the #BabaeAko movement on social media on May 21 by women activists and other people who also want to protest Duterte’s misogynistic and sexist statements.

One of  the women who joined the #BabaeAko campaign was former Social Welfare Secretary Judy Taguiwalo who said, “Akala ko taumbayan ang boss ni Duterte. Yun pala sina Marcos, Gloria, Trump at China. Para sa bayang makatarungan at malaya, lalaban ako.”

In February, he was also slammed for telling his audience of former NPA rebels that he told his soldiers to shoot female rebels in the vagina.

Sources: ( rappler.comphilstar.com )

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New DOT chief to ask Montano why he rushed official New York engagement to watch Broadway show

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Newly installed Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said she plans on talking with Tourism Promotions Board (TPB) COO Cesar Montano to ask for his side on certain accusations that were hurled against him.

Among these accusations came from an Abante report where Montano was said to have rushed a speaking engagement staged by the DOT in New York to watch the Broadway musical show “Hamilton.”

DOT reportedly launched the Philippine Tourism Presentation and Dinner Reception on May 9 to showcase Philippine tourism and fashion at the Roosevelt Hotel in New York. Montano was introduced as the event’s keynote speaker, but he was said to have only spoken for a bit before hurriedly leaving the venue, disappointing the guests, which also included US officials.

Montano was said to have been invited to the event in behalf of the now-resigned Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo. He was also named as one of the two hosts, the other being Teo, of the said event.

In reaction to this report about Montano, Puyat said she would talk to Montano as well as the Tourism attache and other DOT officials who attended the event to verify the accusation in the report mentioned above.

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Puyat said that she would investigate into the “Buhay Carinderia” program that the TPB is set to implement. This was after Philippine Star Boo Chanco accused Montano of issuing P80-million worth of three checks to the event proponent and organizer.

“I still don’t have the papers. I will be asking [and] will be arranging a meeting with Mr. Cesar Montano to ask about ‘yung mga nabasa ko sa ‘Buhay Carinderia’ – kung totoo ba na walang bidding ‘yung P80 million na advance,” Puyat said on May 15.

“I’m planning to talk to him and ask his side. I want to ask all those who were there if it actually happened,” Puyat added.

In March 2017, TPB employees filed a complaint against Montano for his alleged corruption and mismanagement of the agency. These include hiring friends and relatives, using TPB’s funds for personal trips, and showing incompetence in fulfilling his obligations as the agency’s COO.

Sources: ( tnt.abante.com.phphilstar.comrappler.com )

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Eldest Tulfo vows to help Wanda clear her name, berates ‘black sheep’ Ben over controversial P60-M DOT ad deal

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Inquirer columnist Ramon Tulfo spoke up about the controversy involving his siblings, now resigned Tourism Secretary Wanda Tulfo-Teo and hosts Ben and Erwin Tulfo, over the P60 million tourism ad deal.

The eldest Tulfo wrote in his Inquirer column on May 10 that while President Rodrigo Duterte himself advised the Tulfo family to avoid talking to the media, he took it upon himself as the family’s acting patriarch to tell the story behind the controversy.

First up, Ramon blamed Teo for not hiring smart staff members who could have advised her against inking a deal with PTV 4, where one of the Tulfo brothers, Ben, was a blocktimer.

As a blocktimer, Ben pays for his TV show’s airtime on the state-run channel.

According to Ramon, Wanda was only complying with President Duterte’s injunction for his Cabinet secretaries to support PTV 4, adding that she did not know Ben’s company would get most of the multimillion advertising contract with DOT.

He also hit Ben, whom he called a “black sheep” with a “middle child” syndrome as the fifth child out of 10 siblings, for signing the P60-million advertising contract with PTV 4 despite knowing that there would be a conflict of interest on Wanda’s part.

Ramon also said that Wanda still tried to save Ben, who insisted on his innocence amid the controversy, leading her to resign from her post. He also explained that Wanda seemed to have forgotten the fact that her husband was on the board of director of the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (Tieza), a part of DOT, when Duterte appointed her as tourism chief. He added that it should have been up to her husband to step down from his post upon his wife’s appointment.

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In the same column, he also slammed Wanda’s lawyer, Ferdinand Topacio, whom he said did not even consult the Tulfo brothers on returning the P60-million funds from the ad deal. He also described the lawyer as “all talk,” a counsel who’s only focused on gaining publicity for himself.

Unlike what has been previously reported about Wanda resigning out of delicadeza amid the controversy, Ramon let it slip that he commended President Duterte for “sacking Wanda,” prompting some people to ask whether Wanda was fired instead of resigned.

Before he ended his column, he vowed to support “Wanda’s fight to clear her name, but not Ben’s.”
Wanda resigned on May 8 to show delicadeza and to spare everyone, especially Duterte, from the pain caused by the controversy, according to her lawyer.

The issue started with the Commission on Audit’s report showing the DOT paying P60 million worth of commercials to PTV 4, which in turn, tapped Ben’s Bitag Media Unlimited Inc. to air the tourism ads during Ben and Erwin’s show “Kilos Pronto.”

Malacañang said that Teo’s resignation does not mean that she is off the hook since the Ombudsman is still looking into her and other government officials involved in the controversial ad deal.

Sources: ( inquirer.netnews.abs-cbn.com , nnphilippines.com )

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