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Esquire editor in chief, Sass Sasot engage in viral ‘Q&A’ session on FB about drug war, EJK, media



Pro-Duterte political analyst, Netherlands scholar Sass Rogando Sasot asked Esquire PH editor-in-chief Kristine Fonacier a few questions about her experience with drug pushers and addicts and their exchange of questions and answers on Facebook went viral, gaining hundreds of shares.

Sasot first asked Fonacier two questions, saying, “So Kristine, have you already talked and visited a victim of a shabu addict and pusher? Have you ever been victimised by a shabu addict or pusher?”

To this, Fonacier also took to her Facebook page to give her response on April 22, expressing her eagerness to address such questions.

“Question 1: “So Kristine, have you already talked [sic] and visited a victim of a shabu addict and pusher?” Fonacier wrote.

Note that the Esquire editor also pointed out Sasot’s grammatical error. The Duterte supporter wrote “talked and visited…” instead of “talked to and visited…”

“Answer: Yes. For a couple of years, I was friends with a woman whose husband was a shabu addict who victimized their daughter. They live in a poor community in Montalban. I also am friends with people who live in communities where Oplan Tokhang is in place,” Fonacier said.

To Sasot’s second question about whether Fonacier had fallen victim to a drug dealer or addict, she said: “Answer: Tricky, since they never caught the guy who drew a home-made gun on me to hold me up. Police suspect he did it for drug money, but without the perpetrator being caught and without due process, we’ll never know.”

Fonacier then posed her own set of four questions to Sasot.

“My turn to ask the questions: When did you last accompany media people on the night beat to see if indeed they manufactured fake news? When did you last speak to the families of innocents killed in this drug war? When did you last visit a poor community to ask if they feel safer? Heck, here’s an easy one: how much time have you spent in the Philippines in the last five years?” she wrote.

Sasot responded to Fonacier’s questions on the same day.

On whether she has tried accompanying media people covering the night beat to verify if they write manufactured fake news, Sasot said that no, she hasn’t. She reasoned and clapped back at Fonacier, saying, “But I don’t really need to accompany them in order to check if what they’ve written is correct. I guess you haven’t accompanied 7,000 night beats to verify that each of them were EJKs right? Oh, BTW, it’s now 9000. Be honest.”

Sasot also said that she talked to a Filipina domestic helper in the Middle East, who told her via Facebook messenger that her youngest sister was raped and killed by a drug addict.

“The last time I talked to a family of an innocent victim was two weeks ago I think. Ate Jenney, a proud DH in the Middle East, messaged me, to check out on me after that LP Spy issue. Her sister, whom she fondly calls Bunso, was raped and murdered by a shabu addict. Her sister is innocent. Regularly, I get messages from random people sharing to me the inhumanity and brutality they experienced from drug addicts and pushers. I have two friends who were brutally murdered by shabu addicts,” she wrote.

“Unlike you Ms Fonacier, I believe that this drug war was started by drug cartels and their government protectors, which include your favorite senator, Senator Leila de Lima, against our country. It wasn’t Duterte who started it. Our government is simply fighting back,” Sasot said, defending the Duterte administration’s war on drugs.

“The drug war launched by drug cartels has caused a lot of families to break, including the family of your friend, girls and women raped, has terrorised a lot of communities, and cities, people murdered dahil napag-“tripan” sila ng adik.”

To the question about when she last visited a poor community to inquire about their feeling of safety, Sasot said that while she hasn’t been to such a community in the last five years, she was raised in one, in contrast to Fonacier’s residence “in a gated community.”

“I have a lot of childhood friends who lived in looban. And yup, drug addicts and pushers were a pest in their lives,” she added.

“I believe you’ve been frequenting those “poor communities” a lot. So have you asked them if they love their drug addicts and pushers?”

Sasot also included a Bacoor kagawa’s message to her:

“Sass baka naman pede ako huningi ng tulong regarding sa lugar namin dito sa Bacoor Cavite, lalong lalo na dito sa amin sa Mabolo merong isang tulak dito na ilang bes na nai report sa tagal na panahon hanggang ngayun d magalaw,kasi balita namin may mga among pulis na naka pwesto dito sa Bacoor.marami na sa amin ang natatakot dahil kahit pulis walang magawa sa tulak na ito… Akoy iaang kagawad dito sa lugar namin tagal na namin naiteport to pero walang nangayyari kaya susubukan kong lumapit sayo…. Natatakot kasi kami lalo sa pamilya namin ngayung nalaman namin na kasabwat nya ang mga pulis bacoor… Tulad nung iaang bes ung kumnder ng station namin dito kinausap namin pero ang sagot sa amin wag muna daw ung tao nayun…. Kaya tanong namin sa aming mga sarili BAKIT… sana matulungan mo kami maipaalam sa nakakataas o kaya maipost public….. Senaya na sass natatakot kasi kami na balikan kami.. Salanat po at pasensya na sa storbo….. Ang pangalan po angvtulak dito sa amin ay si ********* may kapangalan po yaan fito sa lugar namin ung isa po kalbo ung isa…… Ung hindi kalbo ang tulak dto sa amin… Maraming salamat po”

And posed this question to Fonacier, “since you are in the Philippines, why don’t you visit his community and tell them to love their pusher?”

“I’m turning 35 this year darling. Why are the five years of my life lived here in The Netherlands more relevant than the 30 years of my life lived in the Philippines? If you are asking that question to passive-aggressively call out my “privilege” life, I bet you haven’t sold your puke or pwet yet just to have food on your table,” Sasot concluded her response to Fonacier’s last question about how much time she has spent in her homeland in the last five years.

Sass Sasot engage in viral ‘Q&A’ session
Sass Sasot engage in viral ‘Q&A’ session

Sass Sasot engage in viral ‘Q&A’ session

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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.

Sources: ( , )


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