Economy is Getting Better

To unexpected circumstances, the economy grew at 7.1 percent this Philippines third quarter, compared with 3.2 percent slack in 2011.

Reported by the National Statistics Coordination Board that economic growth is caused by the implemented ‘service sector’ like ‘robust performance’ of transport, storage and communication, financial intermediation, real estate, Renting and business activities and agriculture.

The palace of Malacañang is pleased to this news that beats economy on the other countries in Southeast Asia such as Indonesia which recorded a 6.2 percent said the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), Malaysia with only 5.2 percent, Vietnam with 4.7 percent, with 3 percent Thailand and Singapore with 0.3 percent.

“We were very pleased with the news that was relayed to us by NEDA director general Arsi (Arsenio) Balisacan and certainly it was beyond our expectations. We knew that it was going to be a good number,” said the presidential spokesperson, Edwin Lacierda.

Lacierda also assured of not only the entrepreneurs benefit from the growth of our GDP but also felt by ordinary people across the country.

In this regard, said the progressive legislators in the Lower House of Congress to hint that the Aquino government to the Filipino people of the country’s economic growth by providing employment and reducing poverty in the country.

Malaysian Vessels discovered in Sarangani

Two Malaysian shipping vessels allegedly seized by a group of pirate syndicate were discovered by the Philippine Coast Guard late afternoon Wednesday along Sarangani Bay.

Coast Guard Spokesman Lieutenant Commander Armando Balilo said that the Coast Guard Station-General Santos which is under the PCG-South Eastern Mindanao District of Commodore Lino Dabi discovered two unidentified vessels near Port Kiamba in Sarangani while conducting seaborne patrol.

When the Coast Guard GenSan personnel approached the two vessels, composed of a tugboat and a barge, they immediately verified the identity of these vessels and found out that the two were actually similar to the MT Atlantic-3 and Barge Atlantic-5, both Malaysian-flagged shipping vessels which were recently hijacked somewhere within the territorial waters of Indonesia by a group of pirate syndicate allegedly based in Southern Philippines.

“The Coast Guard GenSan were just conducting seaborne patrol operations along Sarangani Bay when they noticed two suspicious shipping vessels which were unfamiliar and new to them, kasi mukhang bagong dating lang sa lugar. When they saw that the crew members of both vessels were conducting operations which were quite unusual in their eyes, agad-agad na sinita sila ng mga tao namin,” Lt. Cmdr. Balilo said.

The Coast Guard spokesman pointed out that according to Commodore Dabi, his men noticed that the crew members of both vessels that time were apparently changing the appearance of both vessels by painting and changing their names.

Commodore Dabi said that his men noticed that apparently “pinapalitan ng mga crew members ng  pangalan at kulay ‘yung dalawang barko, pero kita pa ‘yung lumang pangalan at mukhang kasisimula pa lang nilang pintahan kaya napansin agad ito ng mga tao natin,” Balilo added.

Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Wilfredo Tamayo had already reported the incident to the Regional Cooperation Against Piracy and Armed Robbery at Sea (ReCAAP) in Singapore while the arrested crew members were brought to a police station in Sarangani for further investigation.

source: abs-cbn

Government-MILF peace talks resume in Malaysia

A security officer stands watch outside a hotel room in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, where peace talks between the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front are being held. AP

MANILA, Philippines – The government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) panels resumed formal peace talks yesterday in Malaysia as government officials assured the rebels that the imposition of martial law in Maguindanao is limited in terms of objectives, duration, geographic coverage, and operations.

Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Rafael Seguis, government panel chair, had informed members of the International Contact Group (ICG) for the government-MILF peace negotiations about the proclamation of martial law in Maguindanao before the Dec. 8-9 negotiations in Kuala Lumpur.

President Arroyo issued Proclamation 1959 declaring martial law in Maguindanao last Saturday to quell what security officials claimed was an ongoing rebellion in the province allegedly staged by supporters of the powerful Ampatuan clan that were implicated in the gruesome Nov. 23 massacre of 57 people, including women and journalists.

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Malaysia acquits alleged Pinay drug mule

MANILA, Philippines – A Filipina worker who was accused of trafficking drugs in August 2008 was acquitted by the Malaysian High Court and is set to go home, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said Monday.

Philippine Ambassador to Malaysia Victoriano Lecaros said Armah Candelario was acquitted last June 25 and will be repatriated to Manila.

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Ex-OFW Sarah Balabagan sings in fight vs abuse

Sentenced to death for killing an employer she accused of trying to rape her, 14-year-old Sarah Balabagan became the public face of poor Filipino migrant workers who regularly suffer abuses abroad.

That was 13 years ago. Her execution by firing squad in the Middle East commuted, she is now a budding singer and TV host who uses her songs and story as weapons against labor abuses.

“They should not be afraid to talk and to fight, that’s the message in my songs,” said Balabagan, who has recorded two CDs focusing on her campaign and newfound Christian faith.

She has sold several thousand copies, mostly to Filipino migrant workers during concert tours, where she preaches the lessons of her near-death ordeal. In October, she visited Malaysia and Singapore, frequent destinations for Filipino maids.

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