TITA VALDERAMA

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GIFT-GIVING is a popular Filipino tradition especially during birthdays and Christmas. But for those in government, receiving or accepting gifts even during Christmas have corresponding penalties under at least four laws. The laws treat the acts of receiving, or accepting gifts as criminal offenses constituting corruption or bribery. Curbing corruption…

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Teaching life skills across all educational levels and re-training teachers to acquaint them with modern tools are probably the most important action plans that the government must prioritize for the Philippine education system to be at par with its neighbors in the region. These are among the long list of…

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THE recent decision of the Monetary Board (MB) to tighten the rules on dormant deposits and bank fees is a step in the right direction to protect the public from ridiculous charges. According to Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), its policy-making board had set the dormancy fee at a ceiling…

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DOING AWAY with inefficient use of public money does not seem to figure out in the government’s program of increasing the budget for basic services such as infrastructure, education and health. The most convenient way for the government to fund its higher spending requirements is to raise taxes, of course.…

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TAXPAYERS should watch keenly how legislators will “reform” the country’s tax structure to make sure that they don’t end up getting fried in their own lard, so to speak. At first glance, the draft of the initial tax reform package, which Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez presented to the House of…

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Let us pray together, I mean all – yellowtards, Dutertards, whatever tards you are tagged as – that no storm with the strength of Yolanda, or earthquake with the same magnitude as that which struck Central Luzon in July 1990 or that in October 2013 which jolted Bohol, or any…

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“Words matter. Words matter when you run for President, and they really matter when you are President.” That was Hillary Clinton speaking at the closing of the first US presidential debate a week ago. While the statement was directed at Republican nominee Donald Trump — in reference to his silence…

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NEVER have journalists been pilloried in the post-martial law period as they have been today. Ironically, the vicious attacks are coming from individuals and groups who spread lies and twist facts or gloss over weaknesses and failures of those they promote. A few days ago, Pope Francis told leaders of…

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Some of our public officials are taking seriously the July 15 memorandum of Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea to all government offices. The memorandum, which was kept for a few days from the media, conveys the directive of President Rodrigo Duterte “to refrain from addressing him as ‘His Excellency,’ and the…

TITA C. VALDERAMA

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When President Rodrigo Duterte openly shared the gossip about Senator Leila de Lima’s relationship with her married driver-bodyguard, bills legitimizing divorce were filed in Congress. Although the filing was not purposely timed to highlight the gossip, it nevertheless underscored the need for a serious consideration of the bill this time,…

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