CATHERINE S. VALENTE, TMT

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Malacañang on Tuesday clarified that the alleged midnight deal involving Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr. and his brother-in-law has been terminated. ”It’s been cancelled,” Palace deputy spokesman Abigail Valte said, referring to the lease by the Philippine Forest Corp. (Philforest) of 2,000 hectares of forest land and beach-front property in…

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The government and Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) negotiating panels resumed formal talks in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on Thursday. The two panels are expected to go over and try to complete the power sharing and normalization annexes for the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro (FAB). In her opening statement, Miriam…

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At 17, Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr. began his journalism career at The Manila Times, the country’s leading newspaper throughout the postwar era. Starting out as a copy boy, Ninoy rose to become an international correspondent covering the Korean War for The Times, for which he was later given an award…

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Malacañang on Wednesday said that it was pleased with the report by Standard & Poor’s (S&P) citing that “the Philippines is now the leader in terms of growth among the major economies in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations [Asean].” “If you compare the economy to a pie, we are…

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Malacañang on Monday belittled a report that the Aquino administration plotted to shake down San Miguel Corporation (SMC) in 2011. “How is government trying to shake-shake-shake, down-down-down?” Palace spokesman Edwin Lacierda replied laughing, when asked if the government is bent on destroying the SMC, the country’s biggest industrial conglomerate. “I’m…

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MALACAÑANG on Thursday said the Aquino government will step up the filing of cases against professional tax evaders after the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) cited a 90-percent tax evasion rate among professionals in 2011. ”We are identifying the professionals who are paying less than what they should pay and…

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The government is standing by its plan to raise the fare of the Metro Rail and Light Rail Transits (MRT/LRT). In a press conference on Wednesday, Palace spokesman Edwin Lacierda said the riding public must take the “bitter pill” of higher fares to improve train service. “These are the things…

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MALACAÑANG on Wednesday vowed an exhaustive, impartial, and fair investigation of the alleged ‘pork’ scam even if some allies of President Benigno Aquino 3rd have also been linked to the controversy. Palace spokesman Edwin Lacierda said “no stone will be left unturned” in the investigation and all evidence will be…

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As President Benigno Aquino 3rd delivers his fourth State of the Nation Address (SONA) today, the big question is: Has he kept his promises? In his past three SONAs, Aquino bashed his political enemies. At his inauguration in 2010, he presented a litany of problems that he said he inherited…

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Malacañang is confident that allegations of extortion surrounding the government’s Metro Rail Transit 3 (MRT) project will not affect the public’s perception on the Aquino administration’s purported campaign against corruption. Palace spokesperson Edwin Lacierda over the weekend said that the exposé of the Czech Ambassador Josef Rychtar would not tarnish…

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