Linggo, Enero 28, 2018

CHA-CHA: One - House, One - Senate are Unwieldy, Duplicitous – JDV

Q & A: Professor and Columnist Mortz Ortigoza interviewed recently former Five-Time House of Representatives Speaker Jose de Venecia or JDV at his palatial coastal home in Dagupan City on the acrimonious and divisive proposed Charter-Change spearheaded by House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez. Alvarez was hell bent to change the centralized political landscape of the country to federalism with a strong unicameral legislature. Here are the thoughts of De Venecia – a rabid advocate of these political changes. EXCERPTS:
MORTZ C. ORTIGOZA: Filipinos are facing the strong arm tactics revision of the Constitution led by Speaker Alvarez where Federalism is dangled as the silver bullet to solve the miseries of the citizens. Do you think Federalism can better-off the lives of the Filipinos?

Joe de Venecia on Benham Rise, Charter-Change
Interviewer: Political Science Professor Mortz C. Ortigoza

JOSE DE VENECIA: When I was Speaker for five times, I invited the Constitutional Committee to introduce a unicameral parliamentary system for the Philippines - just one House instead of the two Houses. So, in addition to a Unicameral Parliamentary System I was moving to a second step to a switch to a Federal System. We were very close to achieving it for the Filipino people until a moved was taken by the case to the High Court. Unfortunately we lost by just one vote. Our system One- House- One Senate is very unwieldy and it is duplicitous. The work of the House is duplicated by the work of the Senate. The work of the Senate is duplicated by the House.

Miyerkules, Enero 24, 2018

The gall of Speaker Panty; My interview with Senator Ejercito

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

The gall of Speaker Pantaleon “Panty” Alvarez threatening those local government units (LGUs) officials that they will not receive their regular financial aid from the national government in case they will not support the Constitutional revision he spearheaded .
HesusMariaHusef, was that sheer hubris and blackmail?! 
Internal Revenue Allotment, called by LGU officials as IRA, is mandated by law as stated in the Local Government Code of 1991.
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SENATOR - Political Columnist Mortz Ortigoza interviews Reelective Senator Jayvee Ejercito at the office of Capital Town Lingayen, Pangasinan Mayor Josefina Castaneda (extreme left). The senator with Actor Raymart Santiago and others through their Italian and Germany’s made big motorcycles’ Ducatis and BMWs have been crisscrossing the Luzon peninsula and dropping by at the offices of provincial, city, and municipal officials.

IRA is the financial life blood of the towns, cities, and provinces as their share of the taxes collected by the national government.
The gall of Speaker Panty Alvarez threatening the 22 senators that in case they did not join the 294 congressmen, the Lower “Going Gutter Low” House will railroad the revision of the charter where plebiscite will be held this May.
 May this year? Holy Casserole and Guacamole, that is roughly four months from now! Public hearings among the 103 million Flips, er, Filipinos would be improbable as time and space dictate.
So how can we get the pulses and inputs of the people in changing the law, not just an ordinary law son of a gun, but the freaking Fundamental Law of our Land?
Where are the sense and the sanity on this Speaker Panty?!
The other day, Lingayen Mayor Josefina” Iday” Castaneda, after I interviewed her on Contract of Usufruct with the DepEd, told me not to leave her office  as she and her officials were waiting for reelective Senator Jayvee Ejercito , actor Raymart Santiago, and company who rode straight from Imperial Manila on their multi-million pesos giant bikes’ Italian made Ducatis and BMWs.
Here were the excerpts of my interview with Senator Ejercito, the son of former President Joseph Estrada, who was crisscrossing the peninsula as probably part of his barnstorming the "boondocks" to boost his critical 10-12 Rank with former Senator Lito “Intellectual Puzzle” Lapid and Broadcaster Erwin Tulfo at the latest polls of Social Weather Station for the Magic 12 of the senate bet on the 2019 election.

ME: Are senators one that embarking into a revision of the Constitution needs that the Houses of Senate and Representatives voted separately?
SENATOR EJERCITO (SJ):  Nagkaroon na tayo ng hearing noong isang araw. We heard from (former Supreme Court Chief Justices Hilario Davide and Renato Puno and (SC Associate) Justice (Adolfo) Azcuna that the Senate has to assert its fight for independence and fight for its independence because iyan ang prinsipiyo ng Bicameral kasi nga Bicameral tayo – check and balance.
ME: When the House of Representatives will have their session do you think some senators will commit treachery by attending their (House) Constituent Assembly?
SJ: Ahh, I don’t think so because it is agreed upon by both majority and minority all senators caucus that we will fight for the Senate’s independence.
ME: Isa pang problema, iyong House tapos na ang 40 bills like PublicService Acts (click here). Doon sa Senate tinulugan daw ninyo ang version ng Public Service Act kaya Speaker Alvarez called you Mabagal na Kapulungan? Any comment?
SJ: Ano iyan?
ME: Iyong 60-40 percent business equity dito na anti foreign investors kaya kakaunti mga nag i-invest dito sa Pilipinas kaya madami ay walang trabaho.
SJ: Ah, hinde ko alam iyan!
 I don’t know what is the status. Sa Senate kasi we are careful, nag aaral ho kami, hindi ng mga bagay na hindi na dapat kinakailangan especially when it comes to altering the fundamental law of the land charter change.
ME: Ranked 10-12 kayo sa latest SWS polls, si brother Jinggoy Estrada ninyo ranked 7-8. Tatakbo rin siya sa 2019?
SJ: Name recall. Ejercito ako Estrada siya. He used to run. The survey is just a guide. Hindi pa naman iyan final.
ME: Sir, suwerte ninyo nakadikit kayo kay Red (Dagupan City Councilor Red Erfe-Mejia who was seated beside him) almost three million rich voters kami dito sa Pangasinan.
(The Senator and Red guffawed while Lingayen Mayor Iday Castaneda – who hosted the meeting inside her office – chuckled on my last statement)

(You can read my selected columns at and articles at Pangasinan News Aro. You can send comments too at 

Linggo, Enero 14, 2018

Contractors, Gov’t Officials Tell-All How Ph is robbed

 By Mortz C. Ortigoza

Two contractors made a “tell-all” how public officials made a cut on government projects.
The contractor, who asked anonymity, cited that a greedy congressman in Northern Luzon asked 30 percent of the entire contract in a bidding he won either at the Departments of Public Works & Highway, Education, Agriculture, Agrarian Reform, Environment & Natural Resources, or the National Irrigation Administration.Image result for corrupt contractors
“We squirmed and wiggled earning these days a reasonable profit because at the DPWH alone we have to give seven percent to the District Engineer and his people and we have to give three to five percent of the profit to the two losing bidders who played moro-moro to the favored bidder of the congressman who wins the bid,” he cited.
Another builder, who also asked not to be named, disclosed how another lady mayor was chided by the spouse of a member of the House of Representatives because she did not inform the solon that the projects she followed up for sometimes and successfully won approval with the national officials in Manila had been deposited by the Department of Budget & Management to her town’s credit in a government bank.
“Mas okay ang congressman namin dito. Pag kami ang nakakuha ng project sa national hindi na siya nakiki-alam  sa amin kaya sa amin na ang SOP,” a mayor quipped when he heard the narration.
S.O.P is an awkward acronym for Standard Operating Procedure how the loot is divided through percentages among the “vultures” in the public service.

Biyernes, Enero 12, 2018

Gen. to P'gasinan Cops: Assist Speed Game vs Jueteng

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

URDANETA CITY – Amidst the proliferation of illegal number game jueteng, the newly appointed police regional director directed the police provincial director of Pangasinan to assist the new government sanctioned Small Town Lottery’s franchisee in the area.
TOP GUNS. Executives of the Speed Game, Inc lead by its President Edward J. Aguilar (second from left) answer media queries on the operation of the betting game sanctioned by the government.
Other officers of the SGI at the photo are, from left,  District Coordinator Alfie Soriano, Legal Consultant Gerald Gubatan, Operation Manager Jose Millora, and Provincial Administrator Anthony Angangco. Photo by Mortz C. Ortigoza
Police Chief Superintendent Romulo E. Sapitula, on a memorandum, instructed Pangasinan's Police Provincial Office Director Senior Supt. Ronald Oliver Lee to direct his chiefs of police in the 44 towns four cities’ province to eradicate jueteng operations so the Philippine Charity Sweepstake Office-Small Town Lottery (PCSO-STL) Authorized Agent Corporation (AAC) Speed Game, Incorporated (SGI) can effectively operate its daily betting games' business in Pangasinan.

The success of the said game will help the National Government raise additional charity funds and broaden the number of people who will greatly benefit from PCSO’s medical charity assistance work for the less privileged. Additional revenues from the game are also intended to benefit various offices of the Philippine National Police (PNP) by way of allocating corresponding STL shares from the gross sales of the STL operations,” Chief Supt. Sapitula on his January 2 directive to S/Supt. Lee by quoting the letter sent to the former last December 18, 2017 by PCSO General Manager Alexander Balutan.

Balutan wrote the Police General that the PCSO recently approved SGI as the STL's Authorized Agent Corporation in the Province of Pangasinan in line with the expansion of the STL operations nationwide which was formally launched on February 2006.
Sapitula ordered Lee to submit the result of his action in favor of Speed Game, Incorporated versus the presence of gambling operators and their agents who illegally collect bets in the province.
SGI and PCSO-Pangasinan just opened its operation by showing to the media last Wednesday its first draw at its newly constructed office and betting station in Barangay San Vicente here.
The press conference that followed was led by Speed Game President Edward J. Aguilar, Provincial Administrator Anthony Angangco, Operation Manager Jose Millora, District Coordinator Alfie Soriano, Legal Consultant Gerald Gubatan, and PCSO –Pangasinan Manager Editha Romero.
Television and radio reports recently said that the personnel of the National Bureau of Investigation and the Criminal Investigation & Detection Group of the PNP have been preoccupied raiding and arresting collectors of illegal gambling operators like Peryahan ng Bayan (PnB) in different parts of the province in violation of Republic Act No. 9287 or An Act Increasing the Penalties for Illegal Number Games, others.
Speed Game, the second bidder at the STL, succeeded Golden Go Rapid Gaming Corporation (GGRGC) as the latter defaulted to remit to the PCSO P7.5 million a day or P225 million a month of its presumptive monthly retail receipt (PMRR).
Speed Game Lawyer Gubatan said the daily contract of the AAC to PCSO is P117 million monthly or P3.9 million daily.

The proliferation of jueteng operations in the province, a source said, ensued after the termination by the PCSO of GGRGC late last year.
Antony Angangco disputed the temporary restraining order (TRO) crowed by the lawyer of the PnB in the media by telling the public that it had been denied by the Regional Trial Court in Pasig City.
Balutan certified in November 16, 2017 that the operation of Peryahan ng Bayan was terminated by the PCSO’s Board of Directors through Resolution No. 51 Series of 2016 effective February 17, 2016.
“The termination of this Deed of Authority is subject of Civil Case No. 75148 between Globaltech and PCSO pending before the Regional Trial Court of Pasig City, Branch 161. The said Court issued an Order dated 13 October 2017 in Civil Case No. 75148 containing the clear directive denying Globaltech’s application of writ of injunction (Annex “B”)”

On its decision, the Pasig City’s RTC said in part on its rejection of the operator of PnB: “All told the Motion for Issuance of Writ of Injunction is denied for lack of merit and the parties are directed upon receipt of this order to arbitrate pursuant to the Special Rules of Court on Alternative Dispute Resolution”.


EDITORIAL: Titigil na kaya ang  ‘bookies’ ng jueteng sa Pangasinan?

Miyerkules, Enero 10, 2018

How your congressman steals your taxes

 By Mortz C. Ortigoza

On my recent TV interview with Davao City’s Congressman Karlo Alexei Nograles, Chairman of the powerful Appropriation Committee, he told me that congressmen don’t identify the recipients of their projects in their district because it was unlawful.
I disagreed.
I told Nograles, who is rumored to have a moist eye for the Senate, that in my province even the losing bidders get three percent of the allocated funds from the government that is shelled out to them by the winning bidder after the moro-moro or for show’s tender in mockery of the Procurement Law.
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The Lower House of the Philippines Congress.
I said I was thankful between the wrangling of House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez and his erstwhile best friend Davao del Norte Rep. Tony Boy Floreindo many Filipinos learned that their conflict did not zero on the “mani’ (mistresses’ clits to put humor on the pussy, er, poser)” but real people’s “money” that Alvarez muscled out to deprive Floreindo, Rep. Imelda Marcos, and 22 opposition congressmen.