Gingoog Mayor Guingona hurt in aides’ clash w NPA: Pertinent CAHRIHL provs

Newspeg: Banner headline in all major news sites: “ Mother of Sen. Guingona injured, 2 killed in NPA attack at Misamis checkpoint” by GMA News Online at; “Wife of ex-VP Guingona wounded in ‘ambush’ “ by ABS-CBN News at; “ Sen. Guingona’s mom hurt in NPA attack” by the Phil. Daily Inquirer at

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The following are the provisions of the CAHRIHL or the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law which both parties invoke to govern situations such as this (pertinent provisions):

 Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law


Between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines

THE GOVERNMENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, including the executive department and its agencies, hereinafter referred to as the GRP


THE NATIONAL DEMOCRATIC FRONT OF THE PHILIPPINES, including the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and the New People’s Army (NPA), hereinafter referred to as the NDFP Hereinafter referred to as “the Parties”,


RECOGNIZING that respect for human rights and international humanitarian law is of crucial importance and urgent necessity in laying the ground for a just and lasting peace,

CONSIDERING that a comprehensive agreement on respect for human rights and international humanitarian law should take into account the current human rights situation in the Philippines and the historical experience of the Filipino people,

AFFIRMING that the principles of human rights and the principles of international humanitarian law are universally applicable,

ACKNOWLEDGING that the prolonged armed conflict in the Philippines necessitates the application of the principles of human rights and the principles of international humanitarian law,

REAFFIRMING their continuing commitment to the aforesaid principles and their application,

REALIZING the necessity and significance of assuming separate duties and responsibilities for upholding, protecting and promoting the principles of human rights and the principles of international humanitarian law,

UPHOLDING and complying with the mutually acceptable principles as well as the common goals and objectives in The Hague Joint Declaration of September 1, 1992, the Breukelen Joint Statement of June 14, 1994 and pertinent joint agreements hitherto signed, and

FULLY AWARE of the need for effective mechanisms and measures for upholding, protecting and promoting the principles of human rights and the principles of international humanitarian law in a comprehensive agreement,

SOLEMNLY ENTER without reservation into this Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law.


                                                                               PART IV

                                     RESPECT FOR INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW

Article 1. In the exercise of their inherent rights, the Parties to the armed conflict shall adhere to and be bound by the generally accepted principles and standards of international humanitarian law.

Article 2. These principles and standards apply to the following persons:

1. civilians or those taking no active part in the hostilities;

2. members of armed forces who have surrendered or laid down their arms;

3. those placed hors de combat by sickness, wounds or any other cause;

4. persons deprived of their liberty for reasons related to the armed conflict; and,

5. relatives and duly authorized representatives of above-named persons.


Article 3. The following acts are and shall remain prohibited at any time and in any place whatsoever with respect to the persons enumerated in the preceding Article 2:

1. violence to life and person, particularly killing or causing injury, being subjected to physical or mental torture, mutilation, corporal punishment, cruel or degrading treatment and all acts of violence and reprisals, including hostage-taking, and acts against the physical well-being, dignity, political convictions and other human rights;

2. holding anyone responsible for an act that she/he has not committed and punishing anyone without complying with all the requisites of due process;

3. requiring persons deprived of their liberty for reasons related to the armed conflict to disclose information other than their identity;

4. desecration of the remains of those who have died in the course of the armed conflict or while under detention, and breach of duty to tender immediately such remains to their families or to give them decent burial;

5. failure to report the identity, personal condition and circumstances of a person deprived of his/her liberty for reasons related to the armed conflict to the Parties to enable them to perform their duties and responsibilities under this Agreement and under international humanitarian law;

6. denial of the right of relatives and duly authorized representatives of a person deprived of liberty for reasons related to the armed conflict to inquire whether a person is in custody or under detention, the reasons for the detention, under what circumstances the person in custody is being detained, and to request directly or through mutually acceptable intermediaries for his/her orderly and expeditious release;

7. practices that cause or allow the forcible evacuations or forcible reconcentration of civilians, unless the security of the civilians involved or imperative military reasons so demand; the emergence and increase of internally displaced families and communities, and the destruction of the lives and property of the civilian population;

8. maintaining, supporting and tolerating paramilitary groups such as armed religious fanatical groups, vigilante groups, private armed groups of businessmen, landlords and politicians, and private security agencies which are being used in land and labor disputes and the incursions in Article 9, Part III of this Agreement; and,

9. allowing the participation of civilian or civilian officials in military field operations and campaigns.

Article 4. The principles and standards of international humanitarian law shall likewise apply and protect the rights of persons, entities or objects involved or affected in any of the cases or situations cited hereunder.

1. Persons hors de combat and those who do not take a direct part in hostilities are entitled to respect for their lives, dignity, human rights, political convictions and their moral and physical integrity and shall be protected in all circumstances and treated humanely without any adverse distinction founded on race, color, faith, sex, birth, social standing or any other similar criteria.

2. The wounded and the sick shall be collected and cared for by the party to the armed conflict which has them in its custody or responsibility.

3. Neutral persons or entities and medical personnel, including persons of humanitarian and/or medical organizations like the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), shall be protected and respected. The establishments, facilities, transport and equipments of these persons, entities and organizations; objects bearing the emblem of the red cross and the flag of peaceful intention; and historic monuments, cultural objects and places of worship shall likewise be protected.

4. Civilian population and civilians shall be treated as such and shall be distinguished from combatants and, together with their property, shall not be the object of attack. They shall likewise be protected against indiscriminate aerial bombardment, strafing, artillery fire, mortar fire, arson, bulldozing and other similar forms of destroying lives and property, from the use of explosives as well as the stockpiling near or in their midst, and the use of chemical and biological weapons.

5. Civilians shall have the right to demand appropriate disciplinary actions against abuses arising from the failure of the Parties to the armed conflict to observe the principles and standards of international humanitarian law.

6. All persons deprived of their liberty for reasons related to the armed conflict shall be treated humanely, provided with adequate food and drinking water, and be afforded safeguards as regards to health and hygiene, and be confined in a secure place. Sufficient information shall be made available concerning persons who have been deprived of their liberty. On humanitarian or other reasonable grounds, such persons deprived of liberty shall be considered for safe release.


7. The ICRC and other humanitarian and/or medical entities shall be granted facilitation and assistance to enable them to care for the sick and the wounded and to undertake their humanitarian missions and activities.

8. Personnel and facilities of schools, the medical profession, religious institutions and places of worship, voluntary evacuation centers, programs and projects of relief and development shall not be the target of any attack. The persons of said entities shall be guaranteed their safety.

9. Every possible measure shall be taken, without delay, to search for and collect the wounded, sick and missing persons and to protect them from any harm and ill treatment, to ensure their adequate care and to search for the dead, prevent despoliation and mutilation and to dispose of them with respect.

Article 5. The Parties decry all violations of the principles of international humanitarian law. They encourage all victims of such violations or their surviving families to come forward with their complaints and evidence.

Article 6. The persons liable for violations of the principles of international humanitarian law shall be subject to investigation and, if evidence warrants, to prosecution and trial. The victims or their survivors shall be indemnified. All necessary measures shall be undertaken to remove the conditions for such violations and to render justice to and indemnify the victims.

Article 7. The GRP shall review and undertake to change policies, laws, programs, projects, campaigns and practices that cause or allow the forcible evacuation and reconcentration of civilians, the emergence and increase of internally displaced families and communities and the destruction of the lives and property of the civilian population.

Article 8. The GRP shall continue to review its policy or practice of creating, maintaining, supporting, or allowing paramilitary forces like the Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Units (CAFGUs) and Civilian Volunteers’ Organizations (CVOs) or any other similar groups.

Article 9. Internally displaced families and communities shall have the right to return to their places of abode and livelihood, to demand all possible assistance necessary to restore them to their normal lives and to be indemnified for damages suffered due to injuries and loss of lives.

Article 10. The Parties shall provide special attention to women and children to ensure their physical and moral integrity. Children shall not be allowed to take part in hostilities.

Article 11. Medical, religious and other humanitarian organizations and their personnel shall not carry out other tasks inimical to any of the Parties. Neither shall they be compelled to carry out tasks which are not compatible with their humanitarian tasks. Under no circumstances shall any person be punished for having carried out medical activities compatible with the principles of medical ethics, regardless of whoever is benefiting from such medical activities.

Article 12. Civilian population shall have the right to be protected against the risks and dangers posed by the presence of military camps in urban centers and other populated areas.

Article 13. The Parties recognize the right of the people to demand the reduction of military expenditures and the rechanneling of savings from such reduction towards social, economic and cultural development which shall be given the highest priority.

Article 14. The Parties shall promote and carry out campaigns of education on international humanitarian law, especially among the people involved in the armed conflict and in areas affected by such conflict.


                                                       PART V JOINT MONITORING COMMITTEE

Article 1. The Parties shall form a Joint Monitoring Committee that shall monitor the implementation of this Agreement.

Article 2. The Committee shall be composed of three members to be chosen by the GRP Panel and three members to be chosen by the NDFP Panel. Each Party shall nominate two representatives of human rights organizations to sit in the committee as observers and to do so at the pleasure of the nominating Party. The Committee shall have co-chairpersons who shall serve as chief representatives of the Parties and shall act as moderators of meetings.

Article 3. The co-chairpersons shall receive complaints of violations of human rights and international humanitarian law and all pertinent information and shall initiate requests or recommendations for the implementation of this Agreement. Upon its approval by consensus, the Committee shall request the investigation of a complaint by the Party concerned and make recommendations. By consensus, it shall make reports and recommendations on its work to the Parties.

Meetings of the Committee shall be every three months and as often as deemed necessary by the co-chairpersons due to an urgent issue or complaint. The meetings shall be held in the Philippines or in any other venue agreed upon by the Parties.

Article 4. Members of the Committee and the observers shall be entitled to the safety and immunity guarantees stipulated by the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees.

Article 5. The Committee shall create a joint secretariat that shall provide staff support. Each Party shall nominate an equal number of members in the joint secretariat who shall serve at the pleasure of the nominating Party.

Article 6. The Committee shall be organized upon the effectivity of this Agreement and shall continue to exist until dissolved by either Party by sending to the other Party a written notice of dissolution which shall take effect thirty days after official receipt. Dissolution of the Committee shall not mean the abandonment of rights and duties by any Party under this Agreement and under the principles and standards of human rights and international humanitarian law.

                                                                             PART VI

                                                                  FINAL PROVISIONS

Article 1. The Parties shall continue to assume separate duties and responsibilities for upholding, protecting and promoting human rights and the principles of international humanitarian law in accordance with their respective political principles, organizations and circumstances until they shall have reached final resolution of the armed conflict.

Article 2. The Parties recognize the applicability of the principles of human rights and principles of international humanitarian law and the continuing force of obligations arising from these principles.

Article 3. Nothing in the provisions of this Agreement nor in its application shall affect the political and legal status of the Parties in accordance with the Hague Joint Declaration. Subsequently, this Agreement shall be subject to the Comprehensive Agreements on Political and Constitutional Reforms and on End of Hostilities and Disposition of Forces. Any reference to the treaties signed by the GRP and to its laws and legal processes in this Agreement shall not in any manner prejudice the political and organizational integrity of the NDFP.

Article 4. The Parties may from time to time review the provisions of this Agreement to determine the need to adopt a supplemental agreement or to modify the provisions hereof as circumstances require.

Article 5. This Agreement shall be signed by the Negotiating Panels and shall take effect upon approval by their respective Principals.

IN WITNESS, we sign this Agreement this 16th day of March 1998 in The Hague, The Netherlands.


PNoy twitted by tweeps for pals epalling in relief operations (Update 9am & 2pm: PNoy & epals, in 4-5 choppers forced to land on SCTEX)

PNoy twitted by tweeps for pals epalling in relief operations

(Update 9am & 2pm:  PNoy & epals, in 4-5 choppers forced to land on SCTEX)

      you’re right. I just conjugated the word “epal”, and used “tweeps” in a so-called “headline” ; (and also wanted to alliterate with twit and pals); “epal” is a Filipino slang originating from the word “papel” or “mapapel” , a person is “mapapel” when he/she does extra work and goes out of his/her way to draw attention to himself/ herself; in the Philippine social context, “epal” has come to mean those traditional politicians who use public funds and facilities to promote themselves in preparation for being elected.

      Update: At about 9:40 am, Palace communications usec Ricky Carandang on phonepatch in GMA “News- to-Go” said that the President and his contingent in two or three passenger choppers and a security group in two choppers, were forced to land on SCTEX, on their way to Tarlac, Pampanga, Bataan, and Bulacan, due to “low visibility”. The news anchor, clueless of the epalling event yesterday, forgot to ask: And who exactly were with the President? Hmmm, he had to use three passenger choppers…? And so… did he bring the same group that he brought with him yesterday in Marikina?  The following: (enumerate)….? Oh. By the way, aren’t those his senatorial bets?… Didn’t some of them lose in the previous elections?  And a follow-up from me: And… perhaps, the choppers were overloaded …? 

At about 2pm, DZMM’s Rod Hizon, with more savvy and wit,  reported that the President and his contingent looked like they were on an election campaign sortie because he brought with him his senatorial bets who were “pakaway-kaway” or waving to the crowds and smiling sweetly during the relief operations.

     In the previous blog post, we commended the government agencies and said “Good job”, as follows:  “To  be fair, PAGASA (the weather bureau), local government units, and media organizations, gave us a three-to-four hour heads-up. GMA News announced the red warning a few minutes after the PAGASA tweet, ABS-CBN cast the widest net of field reporters 24 hours ago and had a non-stop coverage since then. Good job by these organizations.

    The LP campaign manager, the publicists  and the epals probably said: “Why are PAGASA, Project Noah, MMDA, NDRRMC, getting all the credit? Why are Francis Tolentino, Mahar Lagmay, Benito Ramos, Nathaniel Servando, getting all the invites for interviews 24-7, they haven’t slept for three days and their throats are already sore from  fatigue yet they are getting more praises! What about us?” said the epals. And that’s why : they have descended upon us. This is the time of the LP Epals.

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“Netizens slam politicians riding on disaster” by TJ Burgonio, Philippine Daily Inquirer, 4:30 am | Friday, August 10th, 2012

 “Electioneering in the midst of disaster.”

“Facebook user Rolando Luzong posted this line on his account to describe a photo of a waving President Benigno Aquino aboard an Army truck alongside his potential senatorial candidates in a relief operation to help flood victims in Muntinlupa City.

 “The photo showed the President with his Liberal Party allies, Bureau of Customs Commissioner Rufino Biazon, Technical Education and Skills Development Authority director general Joel Villanueva, Department of Transportation and Communications Secretary Manuel Roxas and former Akbayan party-list Representative Risa Hontiveros.

 “Aurora Representative Juan Edgardo Angara, Villanueva and Hontiveros were also seen with the President visiting flood victims who had sought shelter at a public school in Nangka, Marikina, and riding an Army truck with him to check on flooded areas in the same village.

 “These politicians drew criticism in cyberspace for allegedly trying to bolster their popularity for next year’s elections by distributing relief goods, including repackaged ones that contained their names and photographs.

 “Mr. Aquino, who motored for four to five hours to visit evacuation centers in four cities and a town in the capital, justified their presence.

 “ “Of course, those helping us—Joel Villanueva, Risa Hontiveros and Sonny Angara—are here,” the President said when he introduced them to evacuees at the Gen. T. de Leon High School in Valenzuela City.

“ “Sonny is here because it’s budget season in Congress. If we have a project, it’s Sonny who will push for our interest,” he added.

 “Angara, Villanueva, Hontiveros and Biazon are reportedly being eyed for inclusion in the administration’s senatorial slate in the 2013 mid-term elections.

 “ “I’m just helping out. I guess there’s nothing wrong with that. We were asked to go along with the Cabinet,” Angara said in a phone interview. “It’s part of being in politics. You can’t please everyone.”

 “Villanueva, for his part, said his relief operation was by invitation. “First of all, I’m a member of the Cabinet and anytime the President wants to be anywhere, I will be there. Besides, in those places which we visited, including Bagong Silangan, we have trained residents in disaster management.”

 “He said he had not kept his political ambition a secret and that he’d prefer to learn the ropes and find out about the concerns of the people now, rather than after he gets elected.

 “Hontiveros said she was asked by the President to join his visits to evacuation centers because of Akbayan’s relief operations in Marikina, Pasig and Caloocan cities.

 “ “He wanted us to join forces for a day,” she said by phone, explaining that Akbayan had reactivated its relief centers in the aftermath of the heavy flooding.

 “Netizens had a field day posting their reactions to the politicians’ alleged electioneering activities.

“ “Anyone else notice how the relief operations by the President is turning out to be campaign sorties for Risa Hontiveros and his other senatorial candidates for 2013?” Facebook user Joaquin Ang posted.

 “A number of social networking sites also displayed and slammed images of canned goods bearing photos of politicians, including a hashtag #epalwatch on Twitter, an account named “epalwatch” on the free blog hosting platform Tumblr and a number of pages on Facebook such as the Anti-Epal page.

 “In, “epal” is defined as “any public official who has his/her name/image on any public signage, public space, and/or public property … or anything that relates to such behavior.” It also described precampaigning as an “epal activity.”

 “Actress Maricel Laxa-Pangilinan tweeted: “Please lang po, kung tutulong kayo, ’wag n’yo naman gawing promo para sa mga plataporma ninyo. ’Wag kayong epal! Hindi ko talaga kayo iboboto (Please, if you wish to help, don’t make it a promotional campaign for your political platforms. Don’t be scene stealers! I’m not voting for you).”

 “A Facebook post which had about 3,000 shares was also circulated online. It said: “Fellow Filipinos please spread: Any grandstanding politician who will display his or her photos or banners in relief operations will be photographed, archived and forever mocked in an online site of shame. This is a time for solidarity, not an opportunity for political prospecting. Thank you.”

 “User @MrFrancisBaraan posted on his Twitter account: “To those politicians whose ulterior motive for sending out relief goods for flood victims is to get reelected, shame on you.”

 “Twitter user @ederic also posted on his account: “Hello politicians, do not use this disaster for your 2013 campaign. Someone did that during Ondoy. That candidate lost.”

 “On a positive note, a post on the Facebook page Anti-Epal showed relief operations by the Department of Social Welfare and Development accompanied by the comment: “The DSWD gave out relief goods yesterday. Look at the bag: No names, no faces, just the way it should be.”

 “Twitter user @mistervader, however, came to the President’s rescue: “My problem with the whole #epalwatch thing vs Noynoy is … if he didn’t do what he did yesterday, we’d call him lazy. The guy can’t win.” Inquirer Research

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“Early campaigning? Aquino allies say they were just helping out” by Andreo Calonzo,  GMA News August 9, 2012 1:24pm

“When President Benigno Aquino III went to Muntinlupa City on Wednesday for relief operations, he was with four prospective Liberal Party (LP) senatorial candidates for the 2013 polls.

“Three of them were incumbent government officials: Bureau of Customs Commissioner Rufino Biazon, Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) Director General Joel Villanueva and Aurora Rep. Juan Edgardo Angara.

“The fourth, former Akbayan party-list Rep. Risa Hontiveros-Baraquel, does not hold any position in government, but is currently the party-list group’s spokesperson.

“Aquino, who chairs the ruling LP, also went to flood-stricken areas with celebrity sister Kris Aquino to distribute relief goods.

“The scene caused some Filipinos online to criticize the President, saying that the relief operation was a form of “early campaigning.”

“ “Ang kakapal. Mga trapo [traditional politician]. Ang pagtulong sa mga naghihirap nating kababayan ay bukas at taos-puso. Maaga pa para mangampanya,” Katrina Mediante Garcia said on Facebook.

“ “Joel Villanueva and Risa Hontiveros were with PNoy during relief operations. That’s early campaigning for the Senate if you ask me,” Twitter user Arvin Crisol said.

“Just helping out

“Biazon defended his move to join the President, saying he was extending help to his former constituents. He was former representative of the lone district of Muntinlupa from 2001 to 2010.

“ “We simply cannot please everybody. As far as the recipients are concerned, they were happy that relief was delivered to them by no less than the President himself,” the Customs chief said in a text message.

“ “As far as I’m concerned, I am happy for my kababayans,” he added.

“Angara, for his part, said there was nothing wrong with reaching out to flood-stricken Filipinos.

“ “Kung makakatulong naman kami sa ating mga kababayan, why not? Hindi naman siguro masamang tumulong,” he said in a separate text message.

“Under Section 79 of the Omnibus Election Code, “election campaign” is defined as “an act designed to promote the election or defeat of a particular candidate or candidates to a public office.”

“The official campaign period for the 2013 polls does not start until February 12 next year. Certificates of candidacy may only be filed in the first week of October. – BM, GMA News

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“LP’s early campaigning amid disaster hit” by Ira Pedrasa, . Posted at 08/09/2012 7:39 PM | Updated as of 08/09/2012 7:42 PM

 “Some social media users and several politics pundits criticized President Benigno Aquino III and his allies for supposedly using relief efforts to campaign early for the mid-term elections.

“In a report from the CBCP News, Carmelite priest Ransom Rapirap said politicians must not use the victims of the disaster for photo opportunities and for mileage in the 2013 elections.

“Aquino, who usually shuns photo opportunities, went around Metro Manila to attend to the needs of victims. In tow were his sister, showbiz personality Kris Aquino, and former Akbayan Rep. Risa Hontiveros Baraquel. The latter is expected to run in the 2013 elections.

“Aquino told the victims that the government is doing everything to address the massive disaster brought about by heavy rains and floods.

“Some interpreted this another way, however. Criticisms were also hurled over at Twitter.

“@supahnova04 @wabby163 Ah u missed Pnoy’s campaign.. Este… Visit to Muntinlupa flood victims with sis kris, Mar etc (all 3 in yellow). #alamna


“@JasSanchez Kahapon pa, Pnoy is w/ hontiveros, angara, villanueva. Election campaign na while distributing relief goods.Ano role nila dun.Pogi points?

“ @rockinauntie PNoy w/ Quimbo, Angara, Hontiveros-Baraquel and Villanueva. Relief ops or Campaign sortie? Tsk, tsk.

“ @bingcastro Yung mga sumama kay Pnoy in distributing relief goods, please lang. It’s too early to campaign. Kapal much!

“ @adusebastiansp Amidst the floods and tragedy, senatorial candidates still have the guts to campaign to the refugees, and endorsed by pnoy. Nice job!

“ @vrtrooperquatro pnoy’s senatoriables couldnt let chance to campaign early pass.hontiveros,angara&villanueva were w/ him in muntinlupa

“ @caloypalaboy Early campaign for senator bet … PNoy checks in on relief ops w/ cabinet secs at Tunasan, Muntinlupa.

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“Helping or campaigning? PNoy defends presence of ‘senatoriables’ in relief ops” by: August 9, 2012 7:14 PM President Benigno S. Aquino III, accompanied by his sister Kris and some members of his Cabinet, arrives on board a military truck in Barangay Tunasan, Muntinlupa City to distribute relief goods to flood victims in the area on Wednesday (Aug. 8, 2012). (Photo by Gil Nartea/Malacanang Photo Bureau/PNA)

 “ Was the President in a relief operation or in an early poll campaign when he visited areas in Metro Manila devastated by floods?

“During his visit to flood victims in the cities of Marikina, Quezon, Caloocan, Malabon, Muntinlupa, and Valenzuela, Aquino was joined by Aurora Rep. Juan Edgardo “Sonny” Angara, Bureau of Customs (BOC) chief Rozzano Rufino “Ruffy” Biazon,  Akbayan partylist spokesperson Ana Theresia “Risa” Hontiveros, and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) director general Joel Villanueva.

“Last June, Sen. Franklin Drilon, vice chairman of the ruling  Liberal Party, said that Angara, Biazon, Hontiveros, and Villanueva had been included on the LP senatorial lineup for the 2013 polls. But in July, Biazon was quoted by the media as saying that he was eager to continue his job at the BOC than run in 2013.

“Photos from Malacanang show Aquino, on board an Army truck, greeting flood victims of Muntinlupa City on Wednesday with Hontiveros and Biazon to his left, and Villanueva to his right along with celebrity sister Kris Aquino and Department of Transportation and Communications Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas II.

“Other Palace photos show the chief executive giving goods to Muntinlupa folk with Villanueva and Biazon also on August 8.

“More Palace photos show Aquino distributing relief goods in Marikina City on August 9 with Hontiveros, Villanueva, and Angara.

“On August 3, Aquino was also seen with Hontiveros when he went to Happy Land in Tondo to check on the condition of families displaced by a water surge induced by Typhoon Gener.

“But Aquino on Thursday defended the presence of the “senatoriables” in his relief drive.

“Aquino said he had brought Villanueva with him because TESDA is in charge of providing education and livelihood training vouchers.

“Also, Aquino said Angara was with him in order to ensure that the 2013 proposed General Appropriations Act is passed on time.

“ “Sisipsip ho tayo dito for our budget. (Angara) is a member of Congress, and they are now deliberating on our proposed budget,” the President said.

“ “Sonny is here because it is budget time in Congress. If we suggest that we need certain projects to be authorized, I believe Sonny will take the lead in promoting everybody’s interest so we do not have to content with this annual season of massive flooding,” Aquino added.

“Moreover, the President described Villanueva, Angara, and Hontiveros as “people who help us” during the Valenzuela leg of his visits. – with Chichi Conde”

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Top Tweets for!/search/?q=%23epal&src=hash

8 Aug PInoy Reporter ‏@pinoyreporter  DZBB anchor Arnold Clavio called the administration politicos who joined Noy’s sorties in flooded areas “kapalmuks” (thick-faced) #epal

    Jady Indacave ‏@jadysalonga@carlowlowlow: Bakit kailangang kasama ang mga senatoriables sa pagiikot sa mga evacuation ctrs? Ano kinalaman ng TESDA sa baha?#EPAL“-THIS

17h     Noem Lardizabal-Dado ‏@momblogger what does Joel do in ad?  RT @okamitotsuki@thatjustinviber which one? Have u seen the #Tesda tvad feat JVillanueva? #epal to me.#epalwatch

18h     CHA DE ASIS ‏@itschaoreta Such a loser #epal #duh

19h     jay-ar ‏@JayR_12 seems like LP is getting flak for having their senatoriables accompany PNoy in distributing relief goods. #epal

21h   Bj Borja ‏@beej_borja Why are the LP senatoriables part of the relief ops? #epal RT@ANCALERTS LP hit for ‘early campaigning’ amid disaster 

21h     datacanlas ‏@datacanlas Apir, mga teh! RT @TeensMedia@datacanlas ganyan talaga mga#EPAL na pulitiko (and the respective media groups supporting them)#epalwatch

22hJesslee Cuizon ‏@J3SSL33 It’s the perfect time for politicians to gain ‘pogi points’. Their names & photos need to be on every relief bag. #epal 

8 AugNoem Lardizabal-Dado ‏@momblogger tweeps noticed RT @hkmbl: Not the right time.“@noynoyaquinowants to help RT @JayR_12#epal hontiveros, angara at villanueva na kasama…

8 Aug Kim Bernardo-Lokin ‏@hkmbl  Not the right time.“@momblogger@noynoyaquino wants to help them RT @JayR_12#epal din sina hontiveros, angara at villanueva na kasama…

8 Aug PInoy Reporter ‏@pinoyreporter  DZBB anchor Arnold Clavio on politicos who joined Noy sorties to flooded areas: saklolo hindi trapo (relief not politicians) #epal

8 AugPInoy Reporter ‏@pinoyreporter

DZBB anchor Mike Enriquez called the potential senatorial bets who joined Noy’s visit to flooded areas “garapal” (brazen) #epal

8 Aug Gene 秦妮 Gan ‏@gan2101 ang mga #EPAL bow!! Saw these from twitter/fb 

 8 Aug   philip formarejo ‏@heyitsmephilip  Masbate City Political Sardines. seen on facebook. @HecklerForever@Jimparedes @krisaQUInoSTD #EPAL 7 Aug   Miss Kring ‏@funnysexy NAKAKAKILABOT!! RT “@mmmmmmmars: How abt this? Renaming NFA rice to a politician’s name?. son of Mitos Magsaysay ” #epal7 Aug     Noem Lardizabal-Dado ‏@momblogger Someone sent that photo to us few days ago. RT @JoanieOfArc: Canned goods congressman & gov of Masbate #epalwatch #EPAL 

7 Aug    pat punzalan™ ‏@supsup010  may toxic yan! RT @JoanieOfArc@supsup010 gusto mo ng breakfast? made from all natural congressman & governor! #EPAL 

 7 Aug    Joan of Arcadia ‏@JoanieOfArc  Relief goods. Made from natural GOVERNOR and CONGRESSMAN!#EPAL #epalwatch 

 7 Aug  Joan of Arcadia ‏@JoanieOfArc  Saw this on FB. Canned goods w/ politicians’ faces. I assume these will be given out as relief goods. #EPAL #epalwatch 

7 Aug Loell Erecre ‏@loell  I’m pro RHbill, and I voted for Riza when she ran for senate, but her latest Ad screams so #epal.

4 Aug Albert C. Lim ‏@limbertqc Di lang sa sports may problemng ganun @gma_news_tv … Ang master plans kasi natin sa Pinas movable at time-bound sa incumbent 4 #epal lang.

4 Aug Danela Bautista ‏@mlledanela  Yung mga pulitikong mas malaki pa ang picture at pangalan kesa sa information na dapat ibigay sa publiko. #EPAL

RT @mahalpilipinas@RonMunsayac and wen they do, they should cease being in media |must not be both #epal

3 AugCriz de Guzman ‏@criz_marie That moment when somebody is taking a picture tapos bgla akong dumaan! Hahahah!! #epal