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DOT slammed for ‘misleading’ graph in 2017 tourism report



The Department of Tourism is on the receiving end of bashing for releasing what netizens called as “misleading” graphs for its 2017 accomplishment report released on the same day as President Rodrigo Duterte’s second State of the Nation Address (SONA).  

The DOT used two graphs to show the “bright spots” in the Philippines’ economy, which are specifically about how that tourist arrivals increased by 72% and that tourism revenue grew by 109% during Duterte’s first 11 months compared to the Aquino administration.  

However, some netizens pointed out something wrong with the graphs.  

“Even a Grade 4 kid can spot what’s wrong with the conclusion from these poorly made graphs,” Twitter user @econcepcion said. 

Facebook user Jayson Bernard Santos called the graphs “misleading” with “selective” data.  


“Department of Tourism – Philippines, why is your chart missing a few years? Isn’t this a misleading graph? Selective use of data?” Santos wrote.  

“As a matter of fact, 2016 had 313.6 billion tourism revenue from 306 billion in 2015,” he added.  

“Shookt. Sana data na lang from the time Magellan came to the islands ang ginamit para mas glaring ang itinaas ng graph.”  

In the comments section, Santos wrote that he started receiving “harsh, mean messages” in his inbox, which he blocked.  

Rappler’s Newsbreak pointed out that percentage change is computed using data from the immediately preceding period of time.  

But what DOT did was ignore the process during former President Benigno Aquino III’s entire term since the graphs only took into account data from 2010-2011 and immediately jumped into the data from 2016-2017.  

If the comparison was meant to look at the achievements of the DOT during the two administrations’ first year, they should have compared the changes in tourist arrivals during Duterte’s first 11 months in office with that of Aquino during the same period.  

Rappler noted how there has been an increase from one year to the next starting in 2010, although the available data for this year only ended up to May 2017.  

(Graphs rom Rappler)

In Rappler’s comparison, they looked at the data from July 2015 to May 2016, Aquino’s last 11 months in office and compared them to those from July 2016 to May 2017 under the Duterte administration. They also compared the data from July 2010 to May 2011, Aquino’s first 11 months in office, to that of July 2009 to May 2010, the last 11 months of Arroyo’s administration.  

(Graphs rom Rappler)

Rappler took note of the available and lacking tourism-related data. For 2017, the DOT site’s Industry Performance report only has figures until May 2017, hence the use of figures only for Duterte’s first 11 months in office.  

For tourist arrivals, there are available monthly and yearly figures from 2009 onwards on the DOT site. However, there are only yearly figures for tourism receipts, based on “arrival/departure (A/D) cards, shipping manifests, and results of DOT’s Visitor Sample Survey.” The available monthly figures are only available for 2011 and 2013 in DOT’s Travel and Tourism Statistics Booklet. Even when they checked DOT’s headquarters in Makati City, only the 2015 booklet was available.  

They obtained yearly figures for tourism receipts from 2010 to 2015 from DOT’s March 2016 report, while the 2016 yearly figure was taken from an article published by the Federation of Filipino Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry 

Rappler also cited figures on inbound tourism expenditures obtained from the Philippine Tourism Satellite Accounts (PTSA) of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA). They also provided a graph.  

(Graphs rom Rappler)

Former Comelec Commissioner Gregorio Larrazabal tweeted about the issue, citing that tourism receipts actually dropped over P80 billion from May 2016 to July 2017 compared to 2015.  

Before that, he tweeted what appeared to be a “fixed” graph with data from the missing years filled in.  

@clinton613 also hit Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo for possibly not reading the Transition Report with a higher target for 2017.  

@DanSantos showed more figures in his tweet.  

This is not the first time the DOT was criticized by netizens. The agency was recently accused by netizens of “copying” South Africa’s tourism ad, which led to the firing of their advertising agency. Some people with disabilities even hit the ad for promoting to PWDs when in reality, the Philippines is not yet PWD-friendly. 

Teo was also hit for asking the Philippine media to tone down reports on extrajudicial killings and for the empty DOT website’s marketing campaign page 

The DOT was also asked once to stop using Teo’s photos in the cover photos of the agency’s official Facebook page.

Sources: ( , )



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



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


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: ( )


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



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.


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.

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



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.


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.

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