President Duterte wants China, which has built structures in disputed islands in the South China Sea, to lead the way to stability in the region. Also, the Palace said the president had to sleep through some events of the ASEAN Summit. Here are the stories featured in ANC’s newscasts today:
Whatever China wants
President Duterte pushed for the finalization of the much-awaited code of conduct (COC) in the South China Sea as a way to relieve tensions in the region. But he also asked China “what route shall we take,” which could be interpreted as telling Beijing the Philippines will just follow what China desires on the matter. Not really a good way to exert our sovereignty. The President’s statement and the COC should be looked at in the context of the structures China has already built in the area. In his speech, the President said a draft could be ready next year. What good will come out of the COC? Who gets the upper hand and who loses once a COC is finalized? If the COC that would advocate a “status quo” in the area, doesn’t that favor Beijing since its structures are already there?
Power of the power nap
The Palace said the President had to skip six of the important events in the ASEAN summit because he worked late the night before and had to take “power naps.” Presidential Spokesperson Sal Panelo said they found it “amusing” that some are making a fuss over the President’s absence. But it does raise important questions on the fitness of the President to endure the rigors of the presidency and his ability to perform his duties as head of state, and before the world stage at that.
Reining in inflation
The Bangko Sentral will be holding a policy setting meeting 3:30 pm. Will the BSP practice prudence and hold off any raise in interest rates? Or will another quarter-point rate increase help in reining in a stubbornly high inflation rate? Meanwhile, the Senate has approved on final reading a rice tariffication bill that could temper inflation but spell hardships for farmers.
Another paradise in trouble
After Boracay, El Nido is next up for rehabilitation. But unlike Boracay, there will be no closure of Palawan’s tourism gem. Environment Sec. Roy Cimatu said 22 establishments would be closed for various environmental violations. How will this affect arrivals and business there?
The Cayetano couple’s bid to capture the two districts of Taguig City is drawing a lot of flak over the issue of residency. How can they run for two separate districts when the law says that a couple should have one domicile? In a statement, the couple said it was their constituents who clamor for their candidacies. The usual refrain from families out to build and perpetuate dynasties. Lawyer for the Cayetano couple George Garcia will be on ANC’s Early Edition in an attempt to explain their position.