The legal adviser of President Rodrigo Duterte is urging him to postpone his retirement from politics and run for vice president in 2022 with daughter, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, for president.

Panelo stokes Duterte-Duterte for 2022: Tapos na ang laban ‘pag tumakbo ang dalawang ‘yan!

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The legal adviser of President Rodrigo Duterte is urging him to postpone his retirement from politics and run for vice president in 2022 with daughter, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, for president.

Salvador Panelo, who served as Duterte’s campaign lawyer in 2016, believes that a Duterte-Duterte tandem in the next elections would be unbeatable.

“Between us, huwag ninyo na lang sasabihin sa iba. Sikreto. Gusto ko itong Presidenteng ito tumakbong bise presidente sa kanyang tatakbo o pinatatakbo rin na anak na si Mayor Sara Duterte na presidente. O di po ba, ang ganda — Duterte-Duterte. O wala na. Patay na, patay na oposisyon kapag tumakbo itong dalawang ito.,” said Panelo in his TV program.

Panelo said the father and daughter ran as tandem before in Davao City. “Mayor si Presidente Duterte. Yung Vice Mayor niya, ‘yung anak niya na si Mayor Sara Duterte. Maniwala ba kayo nung nagtandem yung dalawa, wala nang tumakbo. Paano ka tatakbo, hindi sila lalabas. Ganoonn katindi, kalakas,” he said.

Duterte has been vocal about his desire to cut short his term because of his frustration with critics and losing war against corruption and his health concerns.

Duterte has likewise publicly appealed to Sara not to run for president because it was a thankless job.

But political pundits see this as similar to Duterte’ successful ploy of playing the reluctant candidate until the start of the campaign.

But Panelo believes that Sara would agree to run for president just like her father did in 2016.

“Itong dalawang ito parehong ayaw tumakbo . Butsabi ko nga kay Mayor Sara, you have an appointment with history and a date with destiny. Hindi po ba. Ganyan nangyari kay presidente noon. 10 taon nating niligawan, bwinisit na tumakbo. ayaw niya talagang tumakbo. pero naka-destindo ka wala ang magagawa, naka destinido ka,” said Panelo.

In December 2019, a pre-election survey that showed that the daughter-father tandem emerged as the top candidates for the two highest positions in government which Panelo claimed brought a smile on the face of Duterte.

Panelo said it has been the “emerging idea” of the older Duterte’s fans and supporters to push him to join the vice-presidential race in 2022.

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Chinese cyber-espionage unit on US hacking spree: report

At least 30,000 US organizations including local governments have been hacked in recent days by an “unusually aggressive” Chinese cyber-espionage campaign, according to a computer security specialist.

The campaign has exploited recently discovered flaws in Microsoft Exchange software, stealing email and infecting computer servers with tools that let attackers take control remotely, Brian Krebs said in a post at his cyber security news website.

“This is an active threat,” White House spokeswoman Jennifer Psaki said when asked about the situation during a press briefing.

“Everyone running these servers needs to act now to patch them. We are concerned that there are a large number of victims,” she added.

After Microsoft released patches for the vulnerabilities on Tuesday, attacks “dramatically stepped up” on servers not yet updated with security fixes, said Krebs, who cited unnamed sources familiar with the situation.

“At least 30,000 organizations across the United States — including a significant number of small businesses, towns, cities and local governments — have over the past few days been hacked by an unusually aggressive Chinese cyber espionage unit that’s focused on stealing email from victim organizations,” Krebs wrote in the post.

He reported that insiders said hackers have “seized control” of thousands of computer systems around the world using password-protected software tools slipped into systems.

Microsoft said early this week that a state-sponsored hacking group operating out of China is exploiting previously unknown security flaws in its Exchange email services to steal data from business users.

The company said the hacking group, which it has named “Hafnium,” is a “highly skilled and sophisticated actor.”

Hafnium has in the past targeted US-based companies including infectious disease researchers, law firms, universities, defense contractors, think tanks, and NGOs.

In a blog post on Tuesday, Microsoft executive Tom Burt said the company had released updates to fix the security flaws, which apply to on-premises versions of the software rather than cloud-based versions, and urged customers to apply them.

“We know that many nation-state actors and criminal groups will move quickly to take advantage of any unpatched systems,” he added at the time.

Microsoft said the group was based in China but operated through leased virtual private servers in the United States, and that it had briefed the US government.

Beijing has previously hit back at US accusations of state-sponsored cyber theft. Last year it accused Washington of smears following allegations that Chinese hackers were attempting to steal coronavirus research.

In January, US intelligence and law enforcement agencies said Russia was probably behind the massive SolarWinds hack that shook the government and corporate security, contradicting then-president Donald Trump, who had suggested China could be to blame.

Microsoft said Tuesday the Hafnium attacks “were in no way connected to the separate SolarWinds-related attacks.” (AFP)

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