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Netizen’s post calling Duterte an ‘unfit kumander-in-chief’ for kowtowing to China goes viral

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Recalling the question thrown at then presidential candidate and now Senator Grace Poe’s way during one of the election debates last year, Facebook user Bernard Ong slammed President Rodrigo Duterte for being an “unfit” commander-in-chief.

The question was what would Poe do if she was woken up one night to be informed that China was attacking two of the Philippine Coast Guard boats. He called it a “commander-in-chief” question,” which could help determine the right politician would “lead the country in war and peace.”

While Poe resorted to enumerating generalities such as diplomacy, code of conduct and modernizing the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Ong though that these would have been the right answers:

1. Immediately convene National Security Council 
2. Place AFP on maximum alert 
3. Get all available intel 
4. Call the president of the US, our treaty ally. 
5. Call Asean, UN, EU, Japan, etc – start diplomatic offensive to condemn & isolate China 
6. Make a live address to the Filipino people, explaining our position – resolve thru peaceful means, but affirm our rights”

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Ong recalled how President Duterte merely talked about taking a jet ski to the Spratly Islands, planting a Philippine flag there, and challenging the Chinese to a shootout. But when Duterte disclosed a year after the elections that the China threatened the Philippines with war if we start drilling oil in the West Philippine Sea, “no jet ski stunt from him yet.”

He also summarized what Duterte actually did to handle this said “threat” from China.

1. Attacked US – our treaty ally & only power that can stop China 
2. Set aside UN Tribunal ruling which rejects China’s fictional claim over seas far from its territory
3. Attacked UN & EU which are important partners in any diplomatic offensive 
4. Abandoned ASEAN united-front position of negotiating multilaterally (where they have more clout)
5. Adopted Chinese position of negotiating bilaterally (where we have less clout)
6. Legitimized China’s claims by saying they have ‘historic rights’ and UN Tribunal ruling is only ‘piece of paper’ 
7. Begged for money from China which would weaken the Philippines’ bargaining power
8. Forged secret agreement allowing China to enter and explore Philippine EEZ including Benhan Rise
9. Considered joint exploration of resources inside our EEZ – in clear violation of PH constitution which says only Filipinos can exploit such resources”

Ong said that Duterte’s endgame is “to kowtow to China diplomatically, politically & economically. Make the Philippines a 21st century colony of China.”

He also gave a list of at least 12 things that a “good” commander-in-chief would have done, including being open to the Filipinos about everything from the threats to relationship with allies, bringing China’s threat to the UN, strengthen relationships with the US, EU, and more.

1. Explain the situation honestly to the Filipino people – threats, risks, options, allies, peaceful approach 
2. Raise China’s threat of war to the UN
3. Lead diplomatic initiative to isolate China on this issue 
4. Strengthen ties with US, Japan, ANZ, India, EU 
5. Talk face-to-face with US president & defense officials. Get firm commitments and agree jointly, publicly ‘red lines’. 
6. Build strong ASEAN consensus for resolution based on rule of law, UNCLOS, UN Tribunal ruling. 
7. Build defensive alliances within ASEAN – Vietnam, Indonesia, Singapore in particular
8. Modernize military especially coastal, naval & air defenses. Do not procure from China – your #1 threat
9. Allow basing agreements for friendly forces
10. Build economic options outside China – BPOs; exports to EU, US, Japan, ASEAN; tourism; etc 
11. Assert rule of law – based on UNCLOS, UN Tribunal ruling
12. Assert Philippine independence, rights & sovereignty”

President Duterte should have used diplomatic, political, defense, and economic tools, without waging war, to assert the Philippines’ rights over what’s ours, Ong said.

“Duterte has said the UN Tribunal ruling is only a piece of paper. By the same token, the Constitution which made him commander-in-chief is only a thick pad of paper. His disrespect for both shows he is unfit to be commander-in-chief. The Philippines deserves better,” Ong added.

As of writing, Ong’s post has been shared over 1,300 times and reacted to 2,400 times.

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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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