News Briefs: Sept. 19, 2018
Misuari asks Sandiganbayan to dismiss graft case
Moro leader Nur Misuari had asked the antigraft court Sandiganbayan to dismiss the graft and malversation charges against him over an alleged P77.2-million “ghost textbook” scam when he was governor of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).
In a 15-page motion filed on Sept. 14, Misuari argued that he was not liable for purchases made by the ARMM government in 2000 and 2001 because payments were released in 2003 and 2004 during the term of his successor, Parouk Hussin.
Misuari said he had been detained in Malaysia from 2001 to 2002 and in Sta. Rosa, Laguna and Quezon City from 2002 to 2008.
“It would not have been possible” for him to “goad” his co-accused, the late ARMM education chief Mahid Mutilan, into committing graft. —Vince F. Nonato
BI to deport 2 South Koreans
The Bureau of Immigration (BI) will deport two Koreans wanted by authorities in Seoul.
Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente said the fugitives — Nam Sang-min, 39, and Ha Que-bak, 45—were arrested recently in separate operations by the bureau’s Fugitive Search Unit in Pampanga and Cagayan.
Nam was arrested in Angeles, Pampanga, while Ha was accosted in Tuguegarao City.
Nam is wanted for defrauding several victims of $23,000 by hacking. Ha is wanted for tax fraud. —Tina G. Santos
Duterte social media defenders say sorry
Two of President Rodrigo Duterte’s social media defenders have apologized for mocking the sign language used by deaf-mutes in a video that had gone viral.
Mocha Uson, known for her sex video tutorials and blogger Andrew Olivar said they did not mean to insult deaf-mutes.
The two were shown on video making fun of the sign language as they prepared a promotional video for their new radio show on station dwIZ.
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said Mocha’s latest boo-boo was being left to Communications Secretary Martin Andanar, Uson’s direct supervisor, to act on. —Julie M. Aurelio
Senator: Include disaster victims in cash transfer
The government should include victims of disasters in its conditional cash transfer (CCT) program to help them get back on their feet, Sen. Grace Poe proposed on Tuesday.
Poe said 5 percent of funds for CCT beneficiaries could be held in reserve for families hit by calamities, such as storms and floods.
“Instead of giving them groceries every once in a while, why not make the assistance regular, organized and with a fixed time frame?” said Poe in a statement.
“If we give them cash, they would be able to decide what they need most,” she added. “Those who are poor to begin with are the most vulnerable when disaster strikes.”
“These are the financially bankrupt. They have very few things to their name, and these were swept away by the flood,” she said. —Leila B. Salaverria
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