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BIR as top human rights violator


It took the Bureau of Internal Revenue’s disgraceful ad featuring a doctor sitting on a teacher’s shoulders for citizens to protest. However, this was only the latest installment in an increasingly alarming shame campaign that must be reexamined under the lens of human rights.

Posted: March 12th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Dark side


Not all was light and hope in the last elections, there was a dark side to them. Agence France-Presse pointed it out last week. The elections also produced a “rogues’ gallery” of winners. Those rogues are:

Posted: May 21st, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »



What a difference an election makes. Three years ago, the one thing that occupied our minds was the extent to which Arroyo’s government would cheat. It was the first time votes would be counted electronically, which caused widespread anxiety and fear. The possibilities for cheating had just been jacked up a hundredfold, computerized canvassing threatening to make “Hello Garci” look like child’s play.

Posted: May 7th, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Lim airs development plans for Manila


It was the turn of Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim to answer questions from journalists at the Kapihan sa Manila at the Diamond Hotel last Monday after former President Joseph Estrada, his rival in the mayoralty race, criticized him and his city administration at the same breakfast forum the Monday before.

Posted: April 16th, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

‘Lim has done nothing for Mali’

Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim portrays himself as a defender of justice, yet right now, he is one obstacle to righting a wrong. Ignoring the recommendations of experts around the world, Lim refuses to approve the transfer of Mali, the ailing and depressed lone elephant at the Manila Zoo, to a sanctuary.

Posted: April 10th, 2013 in Inquirer Opinion,Letters to the Editor | Read More »

Last hurrah


Erap says his run in Manila will be his last hurrah. “I was born in Manila, I first became a famous actor in Manila, so my career has come full circle. This is my last hurrah.” He owes it to the poor, he says, for being there for him throughout his public life, even well after he was ousted as president. “The poor did not leave me and supported me all the way. I am returning the favor.”

Posted: April 2nd, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

A new low

The “morning face-off” last Tuesday between Manila Mayor Fred Lim and deposed President Joseph Estrada, on ABS-CBN, plumbed a new low in political discourse. Indeed, to call it “discourse” is to drain the word of almost all meaning.

Posted: March 14th, 2013 in Editor's Pick,Editorial | Read More »

Messy Manila politics

A day after election candidates in Manila signed a “peace covenant,” reelectionist Mayor Alfredo Lim declared war on reelectionist Vice Mayor Francisco Domagoso and five councilors by having them arrested. Their alleged crime: engaging in “illegal gambling” by sponsoring a bingo game that drew some 500 people in the Blumentritt area.

Posted: February 22nd, 2013 in Editor's Pick,Editorial,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Is bingo an illegal numbers game or not?


Politics has transformed bingo, that numbers game popular in low-income communities, into a heated controversy between Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim and the Manila police on the one hand, and Vice Mayor Isko Moreno, former President Joseph “Erap” Estrada and incumbent Vice President Jejomar Binay on the other.

Posted: February 19th, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Lim: Financial center to rise in Manila


There is an offer from a Korean consortium to build a $4-billion financial center in Manila’s Port Area, with a 63-story tower, the tallest in the Philippines. While still under construction, which is expected to take four to five years, it will need thousands of construction workers, thus easing the unemployment crisis. When finished, it will need 150,000 more employees in its various offices.

Posted: February 13th, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

An ‘old-fashioned’ campaign for Lim


He promises a good, old-fashioned campaign, the third he will mount for his second round as mayor of Manila, and perhaps his last hurrah in electoral politics. Although, as Ate Vi once famously said, “you can never can tell” when it comes to Manila Mayor Fred Lim, who is in his 80s but has the looks, stance and memory of a man many decades younger.

Posted: July 31st, 2012 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »


The city of Manila has experienced many things in its historic existence. The Philippine capital for decades, Manila has seen war and foreign occupation, fire and violent protest actions, urban sprawl and modern makeovers. And look what’s touted as coming in 2013: the so-called “Battle for Manila,” which earned the colorful and foreboding tag “Dirty Harry versus Asiong Salonga”—an expected face-off between two controversial characters, both politicians of long standing but a study in contrast, for the city mayor’s post. (The chances of it taking place is 50-50, according to the latter.)

Posted: April 21st, 2012 in Editor's Pick,Editorial,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »



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