If the blame game is a medal sport in the South East Asian Games, Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano and The Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC) will sweep the gold medal.

Bakit nagkaganito, binigay naman sa inyo lahat? Go calls out PHISGOC, PSC, POC for passing the buck on SEAG fiasco

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If the blame game is a medal sport in the South East Asian Games, Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano and The Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC) will sweep the gold medal.

Senator Bong Go cited the blame tossing between PHISGOC-Cayetano and other SEA Games organizers for the unraveling monumental failure in hosting the biennial sports spectacle.

“Noong naghahanda tayo for Southeast Asian Games, may kanya-kanyang mandato ang gobyerno. Ang Office of the President, Senate, at Congress, nagbigay ng lahat na kakailanganing pondo at suporta para sa hosting kung kaya walang para sabihin na hindi tayo handa,” an exasperated Go said in a privilege speech alluding to the P17 billion budget obtained by Cayetano, half of which was for the New Clark City stadium, a pet project of his former Senate staffer, Bases Conversion and Development Authority Vince Dizon.

“Kahit na may iba-ibang responsibilidad na nakatoka sa PHISGOC, sa PSC (Philippine Sports Commission), at sa POC (Philippine Olympic Committe), hindi ibig sabihin nito na wala na tayong pakialam sa isa’t isa. Huwag tayo magkanya-kanya,” he added.

Based on Go’s explanation, Cayetano’s frustratingly inept PHISGOC has the biggest role in the games: “Primarily responsible for the planning and actual preparations, organization, management and execution of the hosting of the 30th Southeast Asian Games.”

In contrast, the PSC, along with the Department of Budget and Management-Procurement Service, took care of the funding and public procurement aspect of the Games while the POC took charge of the technical aspects of all sporting events.

Go issued a stern warning against the warring groups: “Tandaan niyo: ang kapalpakan ng isa ay kapalpakan nating lahat. Let me remind everyone that you will be answerable to the president and most especially to the Filipino people.”

Go is among the biggest backer of Cayetano and his bid to take full control of the SEA Games through PHISGOC.

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Lalaki’t babae, pantay! Elevate women in society – Duterte

By Prince Golez

President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday urged Filipinos to increase the role that women play in society and break remaining barriers for their empowerment.

“Let us elevate women to their rightful place in society by empowering every Filipina to break not only the barriers that have long hindered them from reaching their full potential, but also the backward mindset that fueled a culture of gender oppression and inequality,” Duterte said in his message during the Women’s Month Celebration.

The Chief Executive claimed that his government has taken “concrete, sustainable and inclusive actions” to ensure women’s rights and contributions are recognized.

He likewise enjoined everyone to help amplify the voice of women and promote their participation in the economies to the same level as men.

“While there is still much to be done to completely free women from this bondage of inequality, we can nonetheless proudly claim that concrete, sustainable, and inclusive actions have been taken by our government to create an environment where women’s rights are respected and their contributions to society are recognized,” said Duterte.

“I therefore encourage every Filipino to join us in celebrating the indispensable role of women in our nation’s progress by participating in this month-long celebration and supporting advocacies that seek to fight for and acknowledge the inalienable rights of women as equal partners of men,” he added.

Keep ’em coming! 38K AstraZeneca vaccine doses arrive in PH

The Philippines received another 38,400 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines on Sunday night.

The delivery from Amsterdam via a KLM Asia flight arrived around 7 p.m.

National Task Force Against Covid-19 chief implementer Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. said the deliveries completed the expected 525,600 doses secured by the national government that is part of the first round of allocated doses from the COVAX Facility, a global risk-sharing mechanism for pooled procurement and equitable access to vaccines led by the World Health Organization and Gavi Alliance.

“Sa ngayon meron na po tayong 1.1 million doses para sa ating mga (As of now, we already have 1.1 million doses of vaccines for our) healthcare workers,” Galvez said in an interview at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 3 in Pasay City.

The vaccine will be immediately deployed to high-risk communities. The initial 487,200 doses arrived on March 4.

A total of 54,500 AstraZeneca doses have been sent to hospitals in National Capital Region (NCR), Region 4-A (Calabarzon) and Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR).

NCR got 1,500, Calabarzon received 13,000, CAR 10,000 doses, and Central Luzon 20,000.

“For this week, to all regions, we will be deploying 240,720 doses,” he said.

Based on the resolution submitted by the Department of Health and the National Immunization Technical Advisory Group, the government will prioritize vaccine deployment to Covid-19 high risks areas such as NCR, Central Visayas, Calabarzon, Region 11 (Davao) and other areas in CAR.

“With the arrival of the AstraZeneca vaccines in the country — all 525,600 doses — there is no doubt that the WHO-led COVAX is committed to carry out its crucial role of ensuring that less-developed nations have equitable access to life-saving vaccines,” Galvez said.

He cited the recommendations made by the vaccine expert panel and President Rodrigo Duterte’s directive to allocate all the vaccines arriving this month to healthcare workers.

“The Duterte administration is doing its best to secure the vaccine doses it would need to inoculate all medical front-liners and healthcare workers in the country within this month,” he said.

The government is targeting to complete the inoculation of healthcare workers within March and start with other priority sectors by April. (PNA)

Create spaces for all genders: Robredo urges women to be trailblazers

Vice President Leni Robredo called on women to unite and work together to create new trails amid challenges to gender inequality.

Robredo said the International Women’s Day, which is celebrated Monday (March 8) is a reminder that the fight for gender equality continues.

“We need as many women and allies as possible banging against the glass ceiling and creating spaces where all genders can flourish and contribute to society. Because progress hinges not on the brilliance of a few, but in the sustained united effort of all,” she said.

“So as we honor the victories of those who came before, let us blaze new trails for others to follow. Let us answer the calls to leadership, face the trials of our time with resolve, and strive towards a fairer, kinder, more humane world, where no one is left behind,” the Vice President added.

Robredo is the second female Vice President of the Philippines, next to former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

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