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Here are the top stories of The Manila Times for Tuesday, January 11, 2022 brought to you by Wilcon Depot, the country's leading home improvement and construction supplies retailer. Shop conveniently 24/7 with Wilcon online store. Just go to shop.wilcon.com.ph.

READ: Covid-19 cases near peak ‒ OCTA

The number of new Covid-19 cases in the country raced past 30,000 on Monday, and the independent OCTA Research Group said the virus' surge could be approaching peak.

READ: Alert Level 4 in NCR not ruled out yet

The government's pandemic task force will place Metro Manila under the stricter Alert Level 4 if the hospitalization rate of Covid patients and daily recorded cases continue to climb, Malacañang said on Monday.

READ: 80% of Filipinos hope worst of Covid over

Majority of Filipinos hope the worst of the Covid-19 crisis is over, a Social Weather Stations survey revealed.

Meanwhile, in other news....

READ: 'Power of the Dog,' 'West Side Story' win at Golden Globes

"The Power of the Dog" and "West Side Story" won the top film prizes at an untelevised Golden Globes on Sunday that was largely ignored by Hollywood with winners unveiled via a live blog without any of the usual A-list glamour.

READ: Bar examinees told to self-quarantine

The Supreme Court reiterated its directive to all bar examinees to self-quarantine, beginning Monday, January 10.

READ: No more time for Cha-cha ‒ Senators

Senate President Vicente "Tito" Sotto 3rd said on Monday there was no more time for Congress to tackle any proposal to pursue Charter change or Cha-cha to lift term limits.

READ: 4 killed in Caloocan jail riot

At least 4 inmates were killed and scores of others were wounded inside the Caloocan City jail on Monday.

In regional news,

READ: Western Visayas police directors, chiefs replaced

Four provincial police directors in Western Visayas and 10 chiefs of police in Negros Occidental were replaced a few hours before the start of the election period on January 9.

In world news,

READ: Court hands Suu Kyi 4-year jail term

A Myanmar junta court handed democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi a new 4-year jail term on Monday a week after the decision was delayed, the latest in a slew of judgment that could see her jailed for decades.

READ: US, Russia start 'tough' dialogue on Ukraine

A top Russian official said he had a "difficult and tough" conversation with his US counterpart on Sunday (Monday in Manila) as preliminary talks on the Ukraine got underway amid fears of a Russian invasion of its pro-Western neighbor.

In business,

READ: FDI nearly doubled in October 2021

Foreign direct investment or FDI net inflows almost doubled in October, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas reported on Monday.

And in sports,

READ: Warriors celebrate Thompson's return

Three-time NBA champion Klay Thompson returned from a 31-month injury absence on Sunday (Monday in Manila) as the Golden State Warriors celebrated "Klay Day" with a 96-82 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Yen Makabenta and Antonio Contreras are the featured columnists on the front page of The Times.

Makabenta says it is a

READ: Time of reckoning: Election period has begun, candidates must either stand or quit

Contreras differentiates between

READ: Fanaticism and idolatry

In The Times editorial, it is stressed that

READ: We need to unlock more of Omicron's secrets

Read all about it.

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With Aric John Sy Cua, Paolo Dimaapi and Christian Maghanoy, this is Dafort Villaseran reporting. Happy New Year!