The petitioners questioning the constitutionality of the Anti-Terrorism Law will take advantage of the Supreme Court’s (SC) decision to postpone the oral arguments over the issue by better preparing themselves, revealed National Union of People’s Lawyers (NUPL) Edre Olalia.

NUPL on postponement of oral arguments on Anti-Terror Law: Petitioners can prepare

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The petitioners questioning the constitutionality of the Anti-Terrorism Law will take advantage of the Supreme Court’s (SC) decision to postpone the oral arguments over the issue by better preparing themselves, revealed National Union of People’s Lawyers (NUPL) Edre Olalia.

Olalia said “it will give us extra time to even thoroughly prepare more and consolidate our ranks further.”

“We pray though that no supervening event would transpire meanwhile that might put things in jeopardy especially now that the law seems poised to be applied at neckbreaking speed,” said Olalia whose group is also one of the petitioners.

The SC announced that it is postponing the scheduled Jan. 19 oral arguments on 37 petitions seeking to declare as unconstitutional the Anti-Terrorism Law.

The high tribunal explained it decided to rest the oral arguments to Feb. 2 after an assistant solicitor general and a staff of the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) who will be participating in the activity caught the COVID-19 virus.

Meanwhile, Olalia, who expressed mixed reactions over the postponement, said he wishes “our colleagues in the profession well.”

“While we assume good faith and hope our counterparts recover, we are at the same time quite disappointed at the last-minute postponement given the extreme urgency and tremendous import of the case,” he admitted.

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CabSec: Duterte may reopen in-person classes if 2 million COVID shots given

By Prince Golez

President Rodrigo Duterte may only allow the resumption of face-to-face classes when at least 2 million Filipinos have received the Covid-19 vaccine, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said Thursday.

During a televised briefing, Nograles said Duterte reiterated during a Cabinet meeting Wednesday that he wanted a “more rigorous” and “more widespread” rollout of vaccine deployment program first before resuming in-person instruction.

“Ang sabi nga niya is that unless he sees about, he gave a figure like 2 million vaccines being rolled out as a start, then that’s when he will start reconsidering about itong pagbubukas, more openly ng ating GCQ (General Community Quarantine) areas to consider again putting it under (Modified) GCG, and dun sa limited face-to-face classes,” the Palace official said.

“Ang napagkasunduan kagabi is that yung limited face-to-face classes will only be pilot classes to be selected very carefully by the Department of Education doon sa mga areas na mababa ang transmission rate ng COVID. So these are pilot limited face-to-face classes,” he shared.

Over 600,000 doses of Sinovac vaccines donated by the Chinese government arrived in Manila last Sunday. The Philippines will also receive more than 400,000 doses of AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine from the global COVAX facility tonight.

Wowowin sa Senado? Duterte tells Willie Revillame to keep options open

President Rodrigo Duterte has asked Willie Revillame to “keep his options open” in the run-up to the 2022 elections, fueling speculation that the popular television host will seek an elective post.

Philippine Star entertainment editor Ricky Lo wrote in his March 4 column that Duterte called Revillame while he was having dinner with Senator Bong Go and Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea at a restaurant in Greenhills, San Juan City on February 27.

Lo quoted Duterte as saying to the host, “Willie, mahal kita. Pinapanood kita. Maraming salamat sa ginagawa mo sa ating mga kababayan. Magkasama tayo sa pagtulong. Kasama tayo sa grupo. Kasama ka namin sa grupo.”

The columnist said it was Go who set the dinner with Revillame to tell him that Duterte was happy with what he’s been doing and to thank him.

Lo said Go was also told to relay Duterte’s message to Revillame, which was: “Tell Willie to keep his options open.”

“Asked what else, what ‘options,’ he and Sen. Bong and Sec. Medialdea discussed during that five-hour dinner, Willie was mum. But his smile was revealing,” the columnist said.

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By Prince Golez

The supply of water for Metro Manila will be “sufficient” this summer, according to Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles.

On Thursday, Nograles said the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) assured during the Cabinet meeting last night that water shortage won’t be a problem in the National Capital Region (NCR) this year.

“According to the MWSS chair and OIC Administrator Reynaldo Velasco, we expect to have a sufficient supply of water this year in Metro Manila. Wala ho tayong water shortage dito sa Maynila,”

“Be that as it may, the MWSS is taking steps to ensure that we have an adequate supply of water this summer,”

Nograles said the MWSS is also working to fast-track several projects that will address the water requirements of NCR in the long run.

The projects include Kaliwa Dam Project, Upper Kaliwa and Kanan rivers, East Bay Water Supply Project (Phase 1 and 2), and the Calawis-Wawa water supply project (Phase 1 and 2).

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