More soldiers from countryside to capital

by Victor Reyes

The Armed Forces has deployed additional troops to Metro Manila to pre-empt possible attempts to grab power during protest rallies scheduled for Monday.

A composite battalion arrived at the headquarters of the AFP National Capital Region Command (NCRcom) in Camp Aguinaldo Wednesday from nearby provinces, Maj. Gen. Fernando Mesa, NCRcom chief, said yesterday.

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Opportunity for Heroism

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No arraignment took place yesterday in the court martial hearing of the 28 officers accused of withdrawing support from Gloria Arroyo two years ago.

The court, though, denied the motion of Atty. Homobono Adaza for a suspension of the hearings for 45 days as a cooling off period. He said there’s no point “for both parties to be shouting at each other now,” when considering the current political situation, the case might be “moot and academic” in a few weeks time.

The court also didn’t agree with the defense that they have to wait for five days after service of the corrected amended charge sheet which was yesterday before they can go to arraignment.The five- day wait, the court said, applies only to the original charge sheet.

Dramatis personae in NBN/ZTE deal

On days that Rodolfo Noel “Jun” Lozada
was testifying in the Senate, all the taxis that I took had the drivers tuned in to the live coverage of the Senate hearings. The drivers by now know the story of the NBN/ZTE, including the riveting kidnapping episode.

No doubt, the broadband deal has become a blockbuster. Rightly so, with a $329 million (P16.4 billion at the exchange rate of P50 to $1 at the time it was negotiated). It’s turning out to be mind-boggling in scope and audacity.

Although the title NBN/ZTE deal has already become a byword, there have been more colorful quotes from participants like “back off” or “may 200 ka dito” and the most recent “moderate their greed.”

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Friday protest activities

I.The Godmother: fight the Philippine Mafia - a film showing

May we invite you to cover the “Premiere of the Godmother: Fight the Philippine Mafia”, a press conference and forum exposing the Philippine president and her “mafia” and revealing human rights violations under the present administration on February 22, 2008, Friday, 9:30 AM at the Sta. Ana Room, 3rd Floor, College of Law, University of the Philippines, Diliman, Quezon City.

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