Sunday, July 24, 2011

Youth leaders warned of moral corruption if RH bill is passed

MANILA, July 25, 2011―Youth leaders were warned of the destructive outcome of the reproductive health bill on marriage and family life if the proposed measure pending in Congress is ever passed.
The passage of the highly controversial RH Bill will lead to the moral corruption of the youth and foster a decadent lifestyle destructive of Filipino values and tradition, according to a pro-life lawyer.
Lawyer George Dee, pro-life advocacy coordinator of the Commission on Family and Life of the Diocese of San Pablo, aired the warning in a special symposium held July 23 before a gathering of 200 youth leaders at the St. Michael's Retreat House in Antipolo City.
Dee told youth leaders not to be deceived by how the bill is crafted, with nice words and seemingly harmless language purporting to advance the interest and the well-being of women and the youth.
He said the apparently harmless words are merely used as a cover up for the real design of the proposed measure which is a coercive birth control program intended to depopulate the country through an aggressive contraception and sterilization program.
The lawyer stressed that the massive proliferation of contraceptive pills and devices readily accessible even to the young, plus the mandatory sex-education component of the bill geared for grade V to fourth year high school will lead to moral corruption of the youth.
He said the bill's objective of "satisfying and safe sex" for partners regardless whether they are married or not will destroy the sacredness of human sexuality as God-given gift for the exclusive enjoyment of married couples and would treat women as mere objects of pleasure.
This mentality will foment a decadent lifestyle where the sanctity of marriage will be meaningless and the youth would be its foremost victim, he said.
Dee also pointed out that the youth's early exposure to sex education based on the population control agenda will strip them of their innocence and takes away from the parents the primary right to educate their children.
He further explained that in situations where married couples have to space their children for grave reasons, resort to natural methods of fertility regulation is perfectly and morally acceptable.
He urged the youth leaders to take their stand in the fight against the RH Bill and in other similar anti-life bills.
The forum was organized by the Ministry of Youth Affairs of the Diocese of Antipolo whose bishop, the Most Reverend Gabriel Reyes was recently elected Chairman of the Episcopal Commission on Family and Life of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines.
He will take over the ECFL Chairmanship from Archbishop Paciano Aniceto in December this year.
Fr. Melvin Castro is currently the Executive Secretary of the ECFL. (CBCPNews)

Enrile calls to promptly act on the proposed 2012 national budget

MANILA, July 25, 2011-As the senate deliberation will start on the proposed general appropriation act of 2012 today, Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile bats his colleagues to promptly act on the proposed national budget for 2012, citing the need for Congress to pass bills that would help government in building the nation’s fiscal and economic capabilities, as well as to strengthen the country’s environmental and defense mechanisms. 

“Early approval would allow the chamber to assess the various programs of the Aquino administration under a ‘reform budget’,” Enrile said, adding that the ideal scenario is for Congress to pass the budget earlier than the date it passed last year’s budget.

As the Senate prepares to buckle down to work today, Enrile said that the people expect the senate to make tough decisions, saying that the citizenry elected them to see to it that they have a voice in helping reform the society, and owe it to them to see to it that their needs are met. This is the time to crank the gears of the engine of sustainable development and use these available resources for the common good,” Enrile explained.

Enrile pointed out that the Congress needed to pass important legislative measures that will show the Filipino people that their government meant business.

Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile.
“The heavy flooding in various parts of the Visayas and Mindanao, the recent findings of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee on alleged fund misappropriations in the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office, and the allegations of electoral fraud committed last 2004 and 2007 elections which have brought to light the need for Congress to enact legislation that would address these problems,” Enrile cited.

During the first Legislative-Executive Advisory Council (LEDAC), Senate sources said that with the opening of the 2nd Regular Session of the 15th Congress, the Senate and the House of Representatives are set to focus on bills discussed.

The priority measures included in the LEDAC main concerns were signed into law by the president before the end of the 1st Regular Session such as R.A. 10151, rationalizing the night work prohibition on women workers; R.A. 10149, promoting financial viability and fiscal discipline in government-owned and controlled corporations; RA 10153, synchronizing the elections in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) with the national and local elections; and RA 10154, which mandates all government agencies to ensure the early release of a retiring state worker’s retirement benefits within 30 days of his or her actual date of retirement.

Two pro-poor bills were enacted into law were the Mandatory Infants and Children Health Immunization Act of 2011 (R.A. 10152), and the Act Extending the Implementation of the Lifeline Rate (R.A. 10150).

The Senate also passed on second reading three bills discussed in the first LEDAC meeting such as the Whistleblower’s Protection Act of 2011 (SBN 2860), which sought to provide better protection, security and benefits for whistleblowers; the Kindergarten Education Act (SBN 2700) which called for the institutionalization of kindergarten education into the basic education system and prescribing a mother tongue-based multi-lingual education; the National Health Insurance Act (SBN 2849) which sought to amend and improve the country’s current national health insurance policy. (Jason de Asis)

Priests, student activists list down PNoy’s successes, failures in time for SONA

SAN PABLO City, July 24, 2011—Some priests of Laguna and student activists in Southern Tagalog have separately listed down various accomplishments and failures of President Benigno Noynoy C. Aquino III during his first year in office.
Catholic priest Fr. Albert San Jose of Pakil town said that President Noynoy is on the right track because he prioritizes on discipline which is one of the number one needs of every Filipino but he is quite disturbed by the president’s indifference in promoting morality. He did not elaborate.
Fr. Jerry Oblepias, parish priest of Del Remedio Parish in San Pablo on his part, said in a text message that PNoy’s accomplishments included the silencing of “Wangwang” which were being abused in the past by both government and private commuters just to avoid being trapped during heavy traffic.
He also praised the president for setting the example of not putting his name and pictures on every government projects, road infrastructures during his one year old regime.
But Oblepias also listed down the various failures of the president, namely the Hacienda Luisita issue where land reform was still unimplemented. The problem of corruption is not yet rooted out and he failed to bring the people to moral ground and solve poverty.
Fr. Rudy Carabuena of Calumpang, Liliw Parish however, praised Aquino for the resignation of former Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez recently and the probe of the alleged over-importation by National Food Authority (NFA) by the previous administration under former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.
President Aquino himself had revealed that NFA incurred a debt of P171.6 billion in the over-importation of rice in 2004 and 2007.
Meanwhile a press report said that youth leaders in Southern Tagalog particularly expressed dismay on the Noynoy administration’s continued lack of support to improve the state of education in the country. The effects of the budget cut for State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) last December have but worsened the state of education in the province.
Students from the Cavite State University (CVSU) – Naic campus for example has faced tuition and other fee increase (TOFI) of more than 100% this semester. Due to the TOFI, enrollment dropped in the campus including its pioneer course of B.S. Fisheries which nearly got dissolved due to lack of enrollees.
“It is disheartening that the very essence of satellite campuses of SUCs in rural areas - which is to allow the poor to have access to quality education, is slowly becoming a myth. We see Aquino’s policies killing the future of the youth as the hope of the nation,” stressed Ruffa Solano, deputy-secretary general of the National Union of Students of the Philippines (NUSP) - Southern Tagalog.
Meanwhile, the Philippine Christian University in Dasmariñas only received around 300 enrollees this semester. School administrators may opt to close down the school due to this low number of enrollees. Solano said this is but an indicator that more and more parents could no longer afford to send their children to private schools. “But they have nowhere else to go since tuition fees in SUCs are almost at par with private schools,” she added.
Members of Kabataan Partylist at the high school level in CVSU-Rosario expressed opposition to Aquino’s K-12 program. The campus, which is close to the Economic Processing Zone Authority (EPZA), offers primarily technical and vocational skills to college students.
“Here students are blatantly exploited during internship and right after graduation they are automatically hired as welders and assembly men for EPZA. The K-12 program which offers vocational and technical skills to high school discourages tertiary education and ultimately hurries the youth into serving the foreign capitalists interest instead of serving the people for genuine national development,” said Anakbayan Timog –Katagalugan Spokesperson Neil John Macuha. (Fr. Romy Ponte)


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