By Corina Oliquino | FilAm Star Correspondent MANILA -- Following President Duterte’s insistent proposition of a sole department dedicated to overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano pushed for a bill that will provide full protection to OFWs Last May 4. Senate Bill No. 1435 will fast-track the help given to OFWs by creating a “focused, single-minded, specialized department secretary solely for OFWs” which will be known as the Department of Foreign Emp...

By Daniel Llanto FilAm Star Correspondent After a long wait, the victims of human rights abuses when Martial Law was imposed by the late President Ferdinand Marcos will begin to receive compensation from the ill-gotten wealth of Marcos and his wife Imelda recovered by the Philippine government from Swiss banks. Under the Human Rights Victims Reparation and Recognition Act of 2013, a total of 30,027 individuals have been processed as eligible for the cash awards out of ...

By William Casis | FilAm Star Correspondent The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on May 8 reaffirmed the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) strategic partnership with the United States in the region’s foreign ministers’ meeting with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in Washington. Acting Secretary of Foreign Affairs Enrique Manalo told Tillerson during the meeting that the Philippines reaffirms the importance of the Asean-US partnership especially in co...

By Macon Araneta | FilAm Star Correspondent President Rodrigo Duterte on May 8 appointed his avid supporter, blogger and former sexy starlet Mocha as assistant secretary of the Presidential Communication Operations Office (PCOO). Uson, whose real name is Margaux Justiniano Uson, will handle Malscanang’s social media. She is an advocate of using blogs rather than traditional media to inform Filipinos. She has a bitter relationship with the press and earlier tagged jou...

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 Daniel Llanto | FilAm Star Correspondent Presidential daughter and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio lashed out at the NPA after their simultaneous attacks in Davao City and Quirino province last weekend. Meanwhile, Defense Sec. Delfin Lorenzana expressed doubt on the group’s sincerity as they resumed peace talks with the government. On May 1, Duterte-Carpio called the NPAs “stupid” and “bumbling idiots” after they attacked the Lapanday Food Corporation in her ...

By William Casis | FilAm Star Correspondent International watchdog Human Rights Watch (HRW) urged the Philippine government to immediately release the alleged drug suspects unlawfully detained in a Manila police station “secret jail” as senators called for a thorough investigation on the matter. “These detainees have been wrongfully held and should be freed with adequate protections against police reprisal,” said Phelim Kine, deputy Asia director at Human Rights Watch. ...

By Corina Oliquino | FilAm Star Correspondent MANILA – Results of the 2016 Survey on Overseas Filipinos (SOF) of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed a decrease in the number of Filipinos working overseas to the latest 2.2 million in 2016 from 2.4 million in 2015. In the survey conducted from April 1, 2016 to September 30, 2016 (OFWs covered by this survey were those aged 15 years old and over and were working overseas during the survey period), overseas con...

By Macon Araneta | FilAm Star Correspondent Supporters of President Rodrigo Duterte on May 2 failed to file an impeachment complaint against Vice-president Leni Robredo for betrayal of public trust, culpable violation of the Constitution and graft and corruption because no member of the House of Representative would endorse it. The President earlier said he would not allow the Vice-president’s impeachment, telling his allies to “lay off” Robredo. Lawyer Bruce Rivera,...

By Corina Oliquino | FilAm Star Correspondent MANILA -- The 2017 World Press Freedom Index by media watchdog Reporters Without Borders (RSF) cited the Philippines as one of the most dangerous countries for the media despite the decrease in the number of journalists killed in the country in recent years. Ranking 127th out of the 180 countries surveyed, the Philippines recorded (as posted in the official website of Reporters Without Borders) 8 journalists killed, 2 netize...