By Macon Araneta | FilAm Star Correspondent For standing up against the murderous war on illegal drugs in the Philippines, Time Magazine recognized human rights activist Sen. Leila de Lima as one of the 100 Most Influential People in 2017. De Lima, currently detained for trumped up drug charges by the Duterte regime, was included in the list for her role in investigating the President Rodrigo Duterte’s ruthless anti-drug campaign. Prior to her ouster as chair of the ...

By Lara Climaco | FilAm Star Correspondent Eco-friendly trains developed by Philippine government engineers can be the once elusive solution to Metro Manila’s traffic mess. State-owned Philippine National Railways (PNR) launched the country’s first locally designed and fabricated hybrid electric train last June 25 at its main station in Manila. Outgoing Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Sec. Mario Montejo emphasized during the launch that with abundant engineerin...

By William Casis Philippine security forces shot dead a suspected foreign jihadist and his wife, bound for Syria, when they resisted arrest and attempted to throw a rifle grenade at them in a coastal town of Sarangani province in the morning January 7. Philippine  National Police (PNP) Chief Ronaldo dela Rosa said the jihadist Abu Naila is believed to be a Sudanese national. "He was on his way to Syria, but he dropped by in the Philippines to conduct training,” Dela ...

By Jane Obana | FilAm Star Correspondent President Aquino recently signed into law Republic Act 10742 or the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) Reform Act of 2015. Among the modified provisions of the new law is the ban of political dynasties among the elected officials and raising the age limit for candidates, previously from 15-17 years old to 18-22 years old. The elected SK officials “must not be related within the second civil degree of consanguinity or affinity to any in...

By Corina Oliquino Manila, Philippines – In its World Report 2016 published last January, international watchdog Human Rights Watch (HRW) condemned the Aquino administration for having ‘No Real Progress on Justice for Serious Abuses’. In the 26th edition of its report, HRW stressed that in the six-year term of President Benigno Aquino III which will be ending in mid-2016, there has been little accountability for extrajudicial killings of indigenous leaders, activists, j...

By William Casis | FilAm Star Correspondent Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV wants the Senate to conduct an investigation into the claims of gambling operator Charlie “Atong” Ang that two Cabinet officials were involved in an alleged plot to kill him due to his gambling operations. Ang said he received death threats because of the continued operation of virtual jai-alai numbers game through Meridien Vista Gaming Corporation where he serves as consultant and general manager. ...

By Macon Araneta | FilAm Star Correspondent A Filipino beauty queen drew flak on social media after she called attention once more to President Rodrigo Duterte’s reference to Nazi leader Adolf Hitler in a Facebook live video. Miss Philippines-Earth 2016 Imelda Schweighart asked fellow Miss Earth Austria titlist Kimberly Budinsky if Hitler was from her country. “Okay, that’s a bad question because we normally don’t talk about Hitler. But, yeah, he is,” Budinsky answered...

By Corina Oliquino | FilAm Star Correspondent MANILA – In its third shot at automated elections, the Philippines, according to the Commission on Elections (COMELEC), made some significant and record-breaking improvements. Speaking to the media people on the evening of Election Day, May 09, COMELEC Chairman Andres Bautista, the Commissioner said that out of the almost 55-million voters, 40 million have voted for a historic 81.2 percent. In a post from Rappler, Bautis...

By Macon Araneta | FilAm Star Correspondent Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales on April 24 maintained the dismissal of criminal and administrative charges against former President Benigno Aquino III over the implementation of the PHP 72 billion Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP), saying there was no probable cause to indict him. “They want Aquino’s head. We go by the evidence. If the evidence is there, if it’s rearing its ugly head, why should we not file the case?”...

By Macon Araneta | FilAm Star Correspondent About 47 members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) and their allies were reported killed and wounded while five improvised explosive devices (IED) and components were seized during a three-day operation in Datu Salibo, Maguindanao, an official said in a statement last March 19. The offensive against the BIFF started March 13 and ended March 16, Western Mindanao Command spokesman Jo-ann Petinglay said. She sa...