The driver of a candidate for councilor in Pasay City was gunned down by two unidentified motorcycle-riding men while waiting for his boss who was conducting a house-to-house campaign yesterday morning.
The victim, identified as Wilfredo Panajon, 38, married, and a resident of the city, died instantly from gunshot wounds in the head and body.
The gunmen were described by some witnesses as wearing a black bonnets and aboard a motorcycle without a license plate number.
Based on the report submitted by Senior Supt. Rodolfo Llorca, chief of Pasay City Police, the incident happened at around 10:30 a.m. yesterday, in front of Blanco Arms at 2424 Zamora Street corner Primero de Marso Street, Pasay City.
Chief Insp. Joey Goforth, head of Station Investigation and Detective Management Section of Pasay City Police, said the victim who was left outside vehicle while Alvin Cruzin entered an alley on Pimero de Marso to conduct a house-to-house campaign among the residents of the place.
After finishing his campaigning, Cruzin decided to return to his vehicle. It was at this juncture when he heard gunshots. As he was approaching his vehicle he saw his driver lying in a pool of blood.
After the shooting, the two suspects quickly fled the scene aboard their motorcycle toward an unknown destination.
Pat C. Santos
Before the incident occurred there was a woman who approached the victim followed by the two suspects who, without saying a word, fired at the victim.
Based on the statement of Cruzin, it was possible that he was the target of the suspects who mistook his driver for him.
“Posibleng ako ang target ng mga ito, dahil matagal na akong nakakatanggap ng death threat sa buhay pero hindi ko ito pinapansin at binabaliwala ko ito. (It is possible that I am the target of the assassins because I have been receiving death threats but I ignored them),” Cruzin said.
Llorca had ordered an investigation and manhunt for the suspects.
Authorities are still trying to establish the motive behind killing.
Wednesday, 24 April 2013 00:00 Published in Metro
Makabayan senatorial bet Teddy Casiño yesterday assailed the Aquino administration’s announcement that there will be no wage increase on Labor Day amid boasting supposed economic gains for the country.
“When the economy is weak and people have nothing to eat, they will say a wage increase is not in order. But when they brag about economic growth, they will say there is no reason for any wage increase. What does this say about our government? Kuripot sa mga manggagawa pero labis-labis ang insentibo sa mga dayuhang kumpanya,” said the three-term solon in response to Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz’s statement that they cannot issue a successive wage order within a year unless there is “supervening condition” or continued increase in prices of oil, food and other essential commodities.
Amid reported improvements in economic indicators, the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB) revealed that poverty incidence in the country remained the same since 2006.
The solon pointed out that the administration has been heralding supposed growth but at the same time excluding the workers and other common folk from living a decent life.
“Just for whom exactly is economic development if not for the common people?” Casiño said.
The senatorial bet said he will push the enactment of a legislated across-the-board wage increase of P125 once elected into the Senate.
“Not only will it uplift the lives of Filipinos, it will also result in a higher demand for goods and services in the local economy. With higher wages, workers will have more to spend on food and health, boosting the local economy and resulting in a healthier workforce,” he said.
NSCB’s study also revealed that the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao remains the poorest region in the country with a poverty rate of 46.9 percent. Casiño said it is not surprising, especially since the region also has the lowest minimum wage rate at P232, almost half of the National Capital Region’s P456.
Earlier, IBON research had dismissed claims that wage increase will result in unemployment and lower growth. Government data revealed that the largest real minimum wage increase since 1986 was under former President Corazon Aquino’s administration which saw the second highest growth.
Meanwhile, the Arroyo administration had the second lowest real wage increase but had the worst unemployment rate at 11.2 percent.
“If the President is really concerned with inclusive growth, then his administration should look into improving the lives of our farmers and workers. Why give doleouts when you can directly address poverty by increasing the income of Filipinos?” he said.
He added he will push his comprehensive platform of agrarian reform, national industrialization and lower prices in the Senate to address the root causes of poverty.
Charlie V. Manalo
Wednesday, 24 April 2013 00:00 Published in Commentary
GEORGETOWN, Malaysia — Malaysia’s opposition, with hopes for an historic victory in May 5 polls, is promising to replicate nationwide its achievements in the showcase state of Penang, where it has curbed corruption and balanced the books.
The opposition won the state in 2008 elections for the first time in a generation, launching open tenders to improve efficiency and requiring senior officials to declare their assets.
The moves have earned praise from graft watchdogs and corresponded with a doubling of investment in Penang from 2008-12 compared to the previous four years under the administration of Malaysia’s decades-old regime.
With the vote shaping up as the closest ever, the opposition says its record in Penang — a picturesque mix of British colonial architecture and Malaysia’s polyglot cultures — answers critics who say it has no experience of government.
The Barisan Nasional (National Front), which has ruled since independence in 1957, derides the three-party opposition as amateurs incapable of governing.
“What we are proud of is that we have managed to run a clean government,” said Lim Guan Eng, the northern state’s pugnacious ethnic Chinese chief minister.
“I would not say that Penang is corruption-free but I think we are the cleanest state in terms of administration in the country,” Lim, 52, told AFP.
Surveys rank corruption as a top public concern, making Penang’s example a potent weapon as many voters are abandoning Barisan over graft, authoritarianism and divisive racial politics.
“It is a good showcase as a place where reacting against bad governance actually gave results,” said Ooi Kee Beng, who studies Malaysian politics for Singapore’s Institute of Southeast Asian Studies.
But replicating that success nationally is a far greater challenge for the Pakatan Rakyat (People’s Pact) opposition alliance led by Anwar Ibrahim, a former top Barisan leader until his ouster and jailing in a 1998 power struggle.
The line between government and business has long been blurred under Barisan. Huge government contracts are still often awarded behind closed doors, factors that economists say weaken economic competitiveness.
Prime Minister Najib Razak has targeted corruption as a major threat, though observers say his anti-graft record is modest at best.
“Quite simply, a failure to eradicate corruption will harm our democratic and economic progress,” Najib told AFP in emailed comments.
A Pakatan federal government would inherit institutions such as an anti-graft commission weakened by Barisan, said Josie Fernandez, secretary general with Transparency International’s Malaysia chapter.
“It will be very challenging. I think the political will is there (within Pakatan) but there should be no compromises. If you are going to really fight corruption, it should be done without fear or favor. It can be done,” she said.
The opposition comprises Anwar’s multi-racial party, a secular party dominated by ethnic Chinese — which Lim heads — and a conservative Islamic party of Muslim ethnic Malays, who make up more than half of Malaysia’s people.
They squabble occasionally over religious and social policy, raising questions over whether differences would paralyze them nationally. Pakatan parties individually control four states but have little experience at co-governing.
Pakatan leaders dismiss the worries, saying its members agree on the big picture of eliminating graft and abuse of power, and investing heavily in education and social welfare.
“We have a shot at it, which we never had in the past. We offer a real choice for the first time in Malaysian history,” said Lim, whose boyish face is topped by a crown of slicked-back hair.
Lim’s political enemies say he has benefited from the state’s declaration as a Unesco World Heritage site in 2008.
That helped draw investment and tourists to Penang, a cosmopolitan trade hub in its 19th-century heyday, whose capital Georgetown is still marked by narrow lanes winding through historic rows of Chinese-style shophouses.
Analysts say Penang’s success is a major concern for Barisan as polls near.
“Prior to 2008, no one really talked about good governance, transparency. To me this is a new vocabulary that has become commonplace,” said Francis Loh, president of independent Penang-based democratic rights group Aliran. AFP
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