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PHL embassy in Malaysia warns Filipinos using backdoors as entry point

PHL embassy in Malaysia warns Filipinos using backdoors as entry point.....»»

Category: newsSource: interaksyon interaksyonAug 25th, 2016

PHL embassy in Malaysia warns Filipinos using backdoors as entry point

PHL embassy in Malaysia warns Filipinos using backdoors as entry point.....»»

Category: newsSource:  interaksyonRelated NewsAug 25th, 2016

PH Embassy in Syria warns Filipinos of mortar attacks in Damascus

  Filipinos residing in Syria have been cautioned as mortar attacks continue to poundDamascus, the country's capital. The Philippine Embassy in Syria issued a security advisory calling on Filipinos based inDamascus and nearby areas to take precautionary measures when strolling outside theirhomes or traveling to and from of their work place, Radyo INQUIRER reported on Saturday. "In the spate of the recent mortar shelling in the areas of Bab Touma and Abbasseen, whichhave injured several individuals, all Filipinos residing in Damascus and nearby areas arereminded to take precautionary measures," the advisory said. Bab Touma and Abbasseen are both major boroughs in ...Keep on reading: PH Embassy in Syria warns Filipinos of mortar attacks in Damascus.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJan 13th, 2018

Brownlee, Balkman prove worth as Alab goes on a winning streak

Justin Brownlee and Renaldo Balkman wasted no time in proving that they are just the fuel needed to stoke the fire under Alab Pilipinas. With their two new reinforcements showing the way, the Filipinos got the better of visiting Westports Malaysia, 90-79, on Wednesday at the Filoil Flying V Centre. Brownlee showcased his shooting while Balkman imposed an inside presence to help the Philippines go on its first win run in the 2017-2018 Asean Basketball League It was also those two who connived in the 21-3 tear bridging the third and fourth quarters that turned a three-point deficit into an 81-66 advantage. In that run alone, Brownlee had six points and two assists while Balkman had nine markers and four rebounds, taking the fight out of the Dragons. It was nothing but an impactful debut for the two new reinforcements who had just replaced Ivan Johnson and Reggie Okosa. Alab would not be threatened for the remainder of the game as the home crowd celebrated their team’s improvement to 2-3. In the end, Brownlee stuffed the stat sheet with 29 points, eight assists, seven rebounds, three steals, and two blocks while Balkman posted his own 17-point, 11-rebound double-double. Josh Urbiztondo and Robby Celiz also added 13 and 10 markers, respectively. For Westports Malaysia, Filipino-American Joshua Munzon impressed anew with 21 points and nine rebounds. Without an answer for Brownlee and Balkman, however, they lost for the third time in a row following a season-opening win. BOX SCORES TANDUAY ALAB PILIPINAS 90 - Brownlee 29, Balkman 17, Urbiztondo 13, Celiz 10, Parks 8, Domingo 6, Maierhoffer 4, Hontiveros 3, Javellona 0, Sumalinog 0, Alabanza 0, Raymundo 0 WESTPORTS MALAYSIA DRAGONS 79 - Munzon 21, Marshall 17, West 16, Yeo 8, Kuek 4, Cabahug 0, Ng 0, Teo 0 QUARTER SCORES: 23-13, 39-32, 68-63, 90-79 —- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 3rd, 2018

Renaldo Balkman’s redemption in the Philippines begins with a win

Renaldo Balkman was welcomed with open arms by Filipinos as he helped Alab Pilipinas score their very first winning streak in the 2017-2018 Asean Basketball League. The Puerto Rican posted a 17-point, 11-rebound double-double in his debut for the Philippine side on Wednesday at the Filoil Flying V Centre. Joining forces with fellow new reinforcement Justin Brownlee, they led their new team to a convincing victory versus Westports Malaysia. For each and every cheer he received, Balkman was nothing but appreciative. “It felt great. Today was a great day to be back in the Philippines,” he said. The win and the warm welcome were more than enough to overcome the grueling day he just had – taking a long flight to Manila where he arrived in the morning, jetlagged and sleepless. “It felt good. I didn’t expect it, but the past is the past,” he said. The six-foot-eight forward was referring to the incident he figured in back in 2013 as a reinforcement for Petron in the PBA. In the dying seconds of the Blaze Boosters’ game against Alaska on March 8, he was livid following what he felt was a non-call by the referees. He wound up shoving game officials, his coaches, and his teammates Ronald Tubid and Arwind Santos. The incident ended with what is the most infamous image he has in the minds of Filipinos – him putting his two hands around the neck of Santos. Not long after the incident, then-PBA commissioner Chito Salud banned Balkman for life and fined him PhP 250, 000. Just like he has done in recent interviews, however, the now 33-year-old said he has moved forward from the incident. “I did lots of things since then and tonight, it wasn’t on my mind, it wasn’t on my head. I just went out there to play basketball,” he shared. All that matters for Balkman now is to help Alab Pilipinas bring back the title to Manila. As he put it, “I’m on a mission to win a championship here,” he said. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 3rd, 2018

HEADS UP: 10 sporting events to watch out for in 2018

2017 has come and gone, and it delivered some exciting sporting moments that has every sports fan clamoring for more. Worry not, though, as 2018 looks primed to satisfy even the most die-hard Pinoy sports aficionado with its bevy of local and international sporting events. Let's welcome the upcoming year with 10 of the most exciting sporting events to watch out for this 2018.   NCAA 93 & UAAP 80 VOLLEYBALL The cagers are out, and the spikers are in. Volleyball season begins this January 4 with NCAA season 93, followed by the 81st season of the UAAP this February. NCAA volleybelles are once again ready to take center court, and the defending women's champion Arellano University Lady Chiefs, led by heavy hitters Jovie Prado and Regine Arocha are banking on their undisputed team play to propel them to another title. Playing inspired volleyball throughout the season, the Lady Chiefs stunned the thrice-to-beat San Sebastian Lady Stags in the Finals last year, ultimately ending Grethcel Soltones' collegiate career with a dud. Rising stars like San Beda's Ces Racraquin, JRU's Karen Montojo also make the upcoming NCAA volleyball season worth waiting for. UAAP volleyball begins a month later the NCAA tournament, but expect the field to be even more tumultuous. With no clear-cut number 2 team to challenge the two-time defending champions DLSU Lady Spikers, it will be a toss-up against basically the other seven schools to step up. Dangerous squads include the much-improved Adamson Lady Falcons, last year's pleasant surprise UST, the dynastic Ateneo Lady Eagles, and the intact NU Lady Bulldogs and FEU Lady Tamaraws. NBA ALL-STAR GAME & 2018 NBA FINALS The annual showcase of the NBA's brightest stars just got a major revamp. That's right, the league has done away with the traditional East-West teams, and will now have a playground-type pool selection of players between its two captains when the exhibition tips off in Los Angeles. This raises a lot of interesting questions: Will the captains pick their teammates or will they go with a more controversial pick and select a rival? Will we able to know the order of the draft? Will this actually work in making the game better? While answers to those questions might not be answered until a few months, one thing's for sure, the NBA Finals, the spectacle that actually counts, will be epic. Will we be treated to Golden State Warriors vs Cleveland Cavaliers Pt. 4? Or will another squad swoop in to spoil the party? The league has indeed improved, with surprising teams like the Milwaukee Bucks, the Indiana Pacers, the Detroit Pistons out in the East already staking claim to playoff spots, and the Wild, Wild, West staying true to its monicker. The Houston Rockets and the perennial powerhouse San Antonio Spurs are still the favorites to pull the rug under the Warriors, while the Oklahoma City Thunder is right behind. Either way, with months of hoops already invested in it, the NBA Finals will surely be another explosive one, as it always is.   HOMECOMING QUEEN Alyssa Valdez spent the majority of 2017 overseas, spreading her wings in Taiwan with volleyball club Attack Line. This 2018 though, The Phenom plans on staying in the Philippines, armed with two year’s worth of international experience to focus on her home club team in the Creamline Cool Smashers.  "Next year, I'm planning to focus sa Creamline. Just this year, I travelled a lot talaga. They supported me throughout, esepcially doon sa National Team stint ko. They sacrificed a lot for me talaga. I think I have to focus sa team ko talaga,” she said last week.Alyssa Valdez just got scarier.   PINOY HOOP DREAMS: REMY MARTIN, KOBE PARAS  Two proudly Pinoy ballers based in the U.S. set out this 2018 to continue shooting for our island nation’s humble hoop dreams. Kobe Paras is still serving residency this 2017-2018 season with the California State University-Northridge Matadors, but his development is sure to be a joy to watch. The 6’6” Pinoy swingman accomplished a tour of duty with Gilas Pilipinas earlier in the year, and many Pinoys saw why we should all be excited about high-flying forward. Remy Martin, a 5’11” point guard dazzled in his first few games with the Arizona State Sun Devils, with his athleticism, explosiveness and feisty defense. The Filipino-American cager is proud of his roots and hopes to represent flag and country with Gilas Pilipinas in the future.   WHO (OR WHAT) IS NEXT FOR MANNY PACQUIAO? The never-ending saga of what’s next for Manny Pacquiao looks like it'll seep into 2018.  Following a rather controversial loss to Australian boxer Jeff Horn, Pacquiao has been “courting” the likes of Floyd Mayweather Jr. for a rematch, even taking to Instagram to ”greet” MMA superstar Conor McGregor before finally admitting that he’s been in talks with the Irish fighter’s camp. Whether he actually retires from boxing for good, or takes on another foe in the squared circle, one thing’s for sure: we’ll all have our eyes on Manny Pacquiao’s next move.   2018 WORLD CUP RUSSIA™ After four years, the best of world football will once again converge, this time in Russia to crown the Kings of the beautiful sport. The stage is set, the groups are finalized, and the 32 squads are promising the best 30-day football extravaganza in the hopes of dethroning defending champions Germany this June. Some group stage clashes to look out for are Germany vs Mexico, England vs Belgium, Portugal vs Spain, to name a few. June couldn’t come soon enough.   CHRISTIAN STANDHARDINGER'S PBA DEBUT No PBA rookie has probably come into the league as pro-ready as the Filipino-German standout Christian Standhardinger. The 6’9” big man was the consensus top overall pick of the 2017 PBA draft, and was also at the center of the controversial trade that sent Kia Picanto’s rights to the number 1 selection to the already-dominant San Miguel. While the trade did go down, so did former commissioner Chito Narvasa. Standhardinger’s entry to the PBA has come at a cost, but San Miguel is more than ready to wait one more conference to bulk up their already stacked squad. Seeing Standharinger play alongside 6’11” center and reigning MVP June Mar Fajardo, versatile forward Arwind Santos, and the Beermen’s bevy of guards in Alex Cabagnot, Marcio Lassiter, and Chris Ross, is definitely a sight to see, just look at how he's tearing it up in the ASEAN Basketball League.    2018 ASIAN GAMES INDONESIA The Philippines’ less than stellar performance at the 2017 Southeast Asian Games was met with widespread flak. Not directed at our athletes however, but aimed at our sports development and governing body for its subpar work in getting our sports representatives ready. While the 2018 Asian Games isn’t so far away, a handful of Pinoy medalists from the SEA Games are going into the continental meet with high hopes. After dominating the SEA Games’ triathlon event, our Filipino endurance athletes, led by gold medalists Kim Mangrobang, and Nikko Huelgas, are once again primed to take home hardware. Marathoner Mary Joy Tabal, and boxers John Marvin, and Eumir Marcial, all gold medalists at Malaysia, are all bright spots that could soon unravel into full-fledged stars come 2018.   GILAS PILIPINAS IN THE FIBA WORLD CUP QUALIFIERS It’s official, basketball is coming home to the Philippines this 2023 by way of the FIBA World Cup, but Gilas Pilipinas will first have to try its luck in the 2019 meet. After dealing with Chinese Taipei and Japan this 2017 for a perfect 2-0 slate in the qualifiers, Gilas Pilipinas still has to face the Japanese anew, and the powerhouse Australian team early in 2018. A good showing against these squads will help Gilas strengthen its bid to international basketball’s biggest stage before we actually host the event in six years’ time.   UAAP 81 BASKETBALL UAAP season 80 just came to an end, but the next season just got way more interesting. Aside from the title defense of the intact Ateneo Blue Eagles and their ongoing rivalry with La Salle, a certain move by a coach has shaken up the league. With Aldin Ayo reportedly accepting the job as the new head coach of the struggling University of Sto. Tomas, we might just be witnesses to the rebirth of the once proud basketball program under the fiery mentor. That, and the way the DLSU Green Archers can adjust from the departure of Ayo and former two-time MVP Ben Mbala, key cogs to their season 79 championship run. The tight race for the MVP award will also be one to watch, with Mbala gone, it’s up to the local stars to step up to the challenge......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 31st, 2017

Canadian woman en route to Vermont spa denied entry to U.S., told she needs immigrant visa – CBC News

A Canadian woman travelling on a Canadian passport says she was turned away at the U.S. border and told she needed a valid immigrant visa to enter the country. Manpreet Kooner, 30, is a Canadian citizen who was born to Indian parents in Canada and raised here. She now lives in Montreal's LaSalle borough with her fiancé and works in a science lab at a local college. She told CBC she was on her way from Montreal to a spa in Vermont for a day trip with two friends, who are both white, Sunday afternoon. They never made it. Kooner said she was held at the border for six hours before being turned away. At one point, she said, a border agent told her: &'8220;'I know you may feel like you've been Trumped,'&'8221; an apparent reference to U.S. President Donald Trump. Trump's January executive order barring citizens from seven majority-Muslim countries from entering the country was later blocked in U.S. courts, but has touched off legal battles and confusion around the world. Kooner was told to apply for the visa at the U.S. Embassy in Ottawa. She went to the embassy Monday morning but was told they couldn't help her, and that she would need to talk to U.S. Customs and Border Protection. &'8220;I'm speechless,&'8221; she said. &'8220;There are no answers.&'8221; In a statement, U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) said it does not discuss individual cases, but that those who present themselves at ports of entry must prove they fulfill admission requirements, and that admission to the U.S. is at the discretion of the border officers. The statement also says CBP adopted a policy in 2014 that &'8220;prohibits the consideration of race or ethnicity in law enforcement, investigation, and screening activities, in all but the most exceptional circumstances.&'8221; Kooner's story is the latest in a string of recent tales involving Canadian travellers scrutinized or turned away by U.S. border agents. Last month, for instance, a woman from the Montreal suburb of Brossard said she was denied entry after being fingerprinted, photographed and questioned in detail about her religion and her views on Trump. Kooner was reluctant to attribute her situation to racism, but said friends who have reached out to her say that could be the case. &'8220;People have said we need to take that into account here, because unfortunately, yeah, my skin colour is brown,&'8221; she said. Kooner said this summer, her mother was turned away at the border as well, but wasn't told why. Kooner said she was told her mother's issues wouldn't impact her. She first had trouble getting into the U.S. last December, before Trump took office. She was with friends and her fiancé when her car was pulled over for what she was told was a random check, she said. She was made to fill out a number of forms, but was eventually told there was a problem with the computer system and they should return the next morning. When they went back, she was let through without any problems. She said that when she tried to cross Sunday, at Highgate Springs, Vt., an agent checked her passport and said they needed to ask her additional questions. The agent mentioned that she had been stopped in December and asked why she was trying to go through again, Kooner said. She said she told them she's a Canadian citizen, has no criminal record and, before December, never had any issues crossing the border. She also said she was fingerprinted and photographed, and signed a form to withdraw her application for entry to the United States. Though she was told there are no flags on her file, a border agent advised her not to fly to the U.S. without a visa, Kooner said. The reference to Trump came as the agent was explaining the reasons why she was refused entry, she said. The border agent couldn't say what kind of visa she would need, only that she would have to visit the U.S. Embassy in Ottawa to get one. Kooner said that's when she started to cry. CBC News spoke to Kooner's friend Alexandra Adam, who was one of the two women on the trip with her. Adam caught the end of the conversation between Kooner and the border agent and confirmed Kooner was told she likely wouldn't be allowed into the U.S. without a visa. Adam said she was not present when the agent allegedly made the Trump comment. A U.S. Embassy official said most travellers from Canada and Bermuda generally do not need visas for tourism and visits. Canadians who are intending to immigrate or those planning to marry a U.S. citizen are among those who do need visas. Kooner does not fall under either category. U.S. immigration lawyer Leslie Holman said it doesn't appear that there's a reason Kooner would need a visa to get into the country. &'8220;Even if someone has a visa, the ultimate decision as to whether they can enter the United States rests when you seek admissibility, at the time of entry,&'8221; she said. A spokesperson for the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Consular Affairs told CBC News the common category of visa that is used for short term, non-immigrant travel to the United States – including tourism and business – is the B1/B2 visa. According to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, an average of 1.2 million people a day try to enter the U.S. at all crossings. Of those, an average of between 300 and 500 are denied entry for various reasons. Kooner has spent more than $1,000 on tickets to attend a musical festival in Miami at the end of the month, and planned to return to that city in May for [&'].....»»

Category: newsSource:  mindanaoexaminerRelated NewsMar 7th, 2017

Malaysia upholds death sentences for nine Filipinos over 2013 incursion

A Malaysian court on Monday upheld death sentences handed down to nine men from the Philippines in connection with an 2013 incursion into the Malaysian part of Borneo island by Philippine fighters seeking to stake an ancient claim......»»

Category: newsSource:  interaksyonRelated NewsJan 15th, 2018

Duterte’s trust rating back to ‘excellent’ – SWS

  President Rodrigo Duterte has regained his "excellent" trust rating in the latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey.   The SWS 2017 Fourth Quarter Survey released on Thursday night showed that 83 percent of Filipinos had "much trust" in Duterte while seven percent had "little trust" with the President.   SWS said Mr. Duterte had a net trust rating of +75 (%much trustminus %little trust, correctly rounded).   The +75 net trust rating of the chief executive was a 15-point increase from the +60 or "very good" he got from the SWS September 2017survey.   "Except in September 2017, Pres. Duterte's net trust rating has been excell...Keep on reading: Duterte’s trust rating back to ‘excellent’ – SWS.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJan 12th, 2018

Embrace China Telecom, Pinoys told

Filipinos should welcome China Telecom as the third player in the Philippine telecommunications industry, instead of dwelling on the possible security risk issues its entry poses, a cybersecurity expert said on Thursday. Rey Lugtu, president of digital transformation consultancy firm Hungry Workhorse, said Filipinos should give China Telecom or other foreign telcos a chance to [...] The post Embrace China Telecom, Pinoys told appeared first on The Manila Times Online......»»

Category: newsSource:  manilatimesRelated NewsJan 11th, 2018

Survey shows Pinoys most optimistic in Asia-Pacific

Thanks to "rising economic growth, a soaring travel industry and greater interregional economic cooperation," citizens of the Asia-Pacific region are feeling optimistic about their future---and Filipinos are the most optimistic of them all. This was one of the key findings of the recent MasterCard Index of Consumer Confidence based on a survey conducted twice yearly in the Asia-Pacific covering 18 markets: Australia, Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Myanmar, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. The latest survey was conducted between October and November last year among 9,141 respondents...Keep on reading: Survey shows Pinoys most optimistic in Asia-Pacific.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJan 10th, 2018

Fil-Am pro cyclist tells kababayans to just keep riding

It’s Coryn Rivera’s third time in the Philippines. However, this time is just the first time the now professional cyclist took her bike out to ride around in her native land. What she saw was nothing but a pleasant surprise. “I didn’t know too much (about the cycling scene) when I got here. I was surprised because I saw around 300 cyclists in Tagaytay,” she told reporters. She then continued, “I was really impressed by that.” Along with that, the 25-year-old, said to be the only cyclist with Filipino roots to be taking part in the European circuit, is nothing but glad to see big cycling events like the one she will be participating in over the weekend. “It’s good that Pru Life UK is doing this. This is a step in the right direction for cycling as a sport here,” she said. Rivera will be riding in the upcoming PRUride PH 2018 from January 11 to 14 in Subic, Zambales. Backed by British life insurer Pru Life UK, PRUride PH 2018 is expected to be one of the biggest cycling events in the country as it will be spread over two areas and span two weekends. These kinds of events, in the professional cyclist’s view, will do nothing but ignite Filipinos’ passion for the spot – just like how her love affair with cycling began when her father would bring her along in group rides as a kid. “When I was 10, I already loved the thrill of speed. Then, I was doing group rides with my parents and their friends,” she shared. Indeed, it was riding their bikes together that was the origins of what is now a successful career for Rivera. “We rode regularly on the tandem (bike) before. Then on our group rides during weekends, she was always drafting on us,” father Wally said. He then continued, “She fell down many times, but she got up many times and just kept following us.” From there, it was clear that cycling was going to be a big part of Coryn’s life. So much so that the five-foot-three American cyclist with Filipino blood has her sights set on the biggest competition of them all. As she put it, “Definitely, my eyes are on the Tokyo 2020 (Olympics).” Together with that high hope, Rivera said she will also make it a point to help her kababayans share her passion for the sport. Asked if she’s planning to visit the Philippines more frequently, she answered, “For sure, especially after seeing how many cyclists there are here. It’s just really exciting to see that.” She then continued, “That’s why I want to continue inspiring people to ride more. The weather here is so nice so it’s a great place to ride.” --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 10th, 2018

Over 71,000 Filipinos deported from Sabah since 2013 — reports

MANILA, Philippines — Filipinos accounted for the largest number of illegal immigrants deported from Sabah, Malaysia since 2013, reports said......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJan 9th, 2018

[OPINION] Third telco: More fiction than real

Let’s go straight to the point. The much ballyhooed entry of a third player in the local telecommunications industry by March, 2018 is a brutal joke. It’s easier said than done. The third telco player would have to hurdle several regulatory matters and corporate issues before it ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsJan 4th, 2018

Brownlee on hearing Ginebra chant in the ABL: 'That was very special'

No, you were not watching the PBA. You were definitely watching the ABL. Yes, what you heard was the familiar "Ginebra" chant Wednesday night at the San Juan Arena. Why? Well, Ginebra folk hero Justin Brownlee was on deck to reinforce the Alab Pilipinas who finally put together its first winning streak of the new ABL season. "That was very special," Browlee said on the massive Ginebra chant in the second half that was triggered by him nailing back-to-back three-point shots to give Alab a 66-63 lead over the Westports Malaysia Dragons. "I know I'm here in Alab, this is a great team, a great organization and a great company and everything and have great sponsors, it’s always gonna feel great to hear that chant no matter where I am," he added. Brownlee made good account of his ABL debut, posting his usual Ginebra numbers of 29 points, seven rebounds, eight assists, three steals, and two blocks. He did all of that while not being 100 percent, which is amazing really. "I got to admit, it’s a little difficult. Just being jetlagged and coming in, playing with these guys without any practice but the guys made it easy for me and Balkman," he said. However, being back in the country, Brownlee is excited how the the team will move forward. Alab is now 2-3 for the season after back-to-back wins. "It’s great man, the team is a great team, great group of guys. They went out there and played hard. It’s fun and exciting just being in front of the crowd and being back in the Philippines is very exciting for me," Brownlee said.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 3rd, 2018

The unlikely partnership of Alapag and Brownlee

Lost in the return of Renaldo Balkman is the interesting dynamic forged by the unlikely partnership of Justin Brownlee and Alab Pilipinas head coach Jimmy Alapag. You see, both of Brownlee's PBA championships with Ginebra came at the expense of Alapag. In 2016, Alapag was looking to end his magical PBA career by winning a title with the Meralco Bolts. Brownlee's epic "The Shot" moment prevented that from happening. In the highly-anticipated rematch between the two teams, Brownlee and the Gin Kings got the better of the Bolts again where Alapag served as an assistant coach before taking over the Alab job. "Justin and I have personal experience both as a player and a coach," Alapag said of Brownlee after they won their first game together Wednesday, beating Westports Malaysia Dragons, 90-79. "I got burned twice in the [PBA] Finals, really thankful he's playing with Alab," he added. As for Brownlee, whose only coach he's ever known in the PBA is the #GOAT Tim Cone, he's thankful to have the opportunity to learn from Alapag, one of the best point guards to ever play on the PBA. "It was a great opportunity and an honor to be able to play for a guy like him, as intelligent as he is and the type of player he was," Brownlee said on Alapag. "He was a great player in the PBA for many years. Playing for somebody like that with a lot of knowledge in basketball and also a great guy, it's a blessing for me and my career. I'll definitely take advantage of that," he added.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 3rd, 2018

Brownlee, Balkman lead Alab to back to back wins

  Alab Pilipinas is starting to move on from its horrible start in the ASEAN Basketball League after tallying its second straight win at the expense of Westports Malaysia, 90-79, Wednesday at Filoil Flying V Centre. The Filipinos mounted a 20-3 run across the third and fourth quarters to build an 81-66 lead with import Renaldo Balkman capping off the spurt with a breakaway two-hand flush. Alab's win was even more impressive as new imports Justin Brownlee and Balkman, who replaced Ivan Johnson and Regie Okosa, only arrived with the team the day of the game. "I'm really thankful that Justin's playing with Alab, and Renaldo was someone we wanted who can replace Ivan's v...Keep on reading: Brownlee, Balkman lead Alab to back to back wins.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJan 3rd, 2018

Balkman on joining Alab Pilipinas: ‘I finally have a chance for redemption’

Renaldo Balkman is here to help Alab Pilipinas in its championship campaign in the 2017-2018 Asean Basketball League. “Thankful for another opportunity to do what I love to do,” he said in a statement through agent Sheryl Reyes. The Puerto Rican-American will be joining forces with fan favorite Justin Brownlee and reigning and defending Local MVP Ray Parks Jr. for the Filipino side seeking to get its first win run of the season going. On a more personal note, however, Balkman is here to make a different kind of mark from the one he had the last time he was in the Philippines. “Five years to the day I did something I regret… Now, I finally have a chance for redemption,” he said. The versatile forward was once a reinforcement for Petron in the PBA back in 2013. In the dying seconds of the Blaze Boosters’ game against Alaska on March 8, he went berserk following what he felt was a non-call by the referees. He wound up shoving game officials, his coaches, and his teammates Ronald Tubid and Arwind Santos. The incident ended with what is the most infamous image he has in the minds of Filipinos – him putting his two hands around the neck of Santos. Not long after the incident, then-PBA commissioner Chito Salud banned Balkman for life and fined him PhP 250, 000. That incident has only changed him for the better, says the now 33-year-old. “I learned a valuable lesson from (that)… Always remember to keep your composure and be the best role model you can be,” he said. With that, he is aiming to reward the chance given him by Alab by helping them better their current 1-3 standing. Balkman and Brownlee debut when they take on Westports Malaysia on Wednesday at the Filoil Flying V Centre. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 1st, 2018

Letters From Davao by Jun Ledesma

‘It was a good year’ We have seen the litany of achievements of Duterte administration. It dwarfed the entire six years of the Aquino regime. It could have done better except that it has to first fix a lot of damages wrought by an inept regime that has likewise institutionalized corruption and abetted crime the most horrific of it all – the drug syndicates.  Space or brevity must have limited some significant achievements of the  Department of Finance and am referring to the upgrades of credit ratings of the Philippines from investment grade to investment grade and stable. While early on Standard & Poor’s claimed that President Duterte’s war on drugs and alleged extra-judicial killings are factors that account for the static rating by December 2017 it grudgingly acceded that something good is happening in the Philippines under Duterte’s watch.  Finance Sec. Sonny Dominguez and his team deserves the credit. Fitch and Moody’s in their “investment grade and stable” rating in December enunciated that the issues surrounding drugs and EJK have nothing to do with the rosy economy of the country and its image as capital investment destination. The country’s economic performance for one is top in Asia and there is no turning back with the expected massive spending on infrastructures and government services starting 2018 and beyond.  The Duterte government achievements scoreboard makes the moribund opposition drooling. Still on Finance, expect the billionaires who are also the country’s tax dodgers to cough up. TRAIN or the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion gives a huge relief to 99 percent of those small taxpayers saving the ar least P50,000.00 in tax cut!  But demands and exacts the reasonable taxes from the rich especially the filthy rich. Last year sampling of Lucio Tan (P6-billion), Mighty Cigarettes (P40-billion) and the Prieto and Rufinos’ one-mile asset that they are accountable to the government in still unquantifiable amount as yet? There is a subliminal message to be absorbed why candidate Rodrigo R. Duterte refused to accept donations from the rich and famous: just pay your taxes correctly and you’re okay.  The Bureau of Internal Revenue and the Bureau of Customs are churning more collections under a continuing reforms.  President Duterte himself did dramatic and radical transformations in the area of Foreign Affairs and security. He was chided and lectured on by self proclaimed experts in diplomacy and security alliances especially with the generous expletives he is famous for. But as he admitted to the point of being apologetic, he told media men in this year’s Christmas party, “but that is me”.  Duterte’s foray into foreign affairs and diplomacy might be severely lacking in refinements but he put across his message clearly and direct and one cannot quarrel with what he achieved in such a brief moment. He virtually altered the outlook of the western countries on small sovereign nations. He overhauled alliances by an unwritten rule of mutual respect and cognizance of sovereignty. While Aquino made enemies with China which is the world’s second largest economy resulting in unquantifiable losses of opportunities Duterte reversed that with the resumption of trade, financial assistance with cheap money interest, massive infrastructure projects that will come into fruition by 2018. World leaders to include Xi Jinping of China, Vladimir Putin of Russia, PM Shinzo Abe of Japan and, to the dismay of the so-called Yellowtards, US Pres. Donald Trump who became his virtual phone pal.  The Department of Agriculture under Sec. Manny Pinol, did exemplary well. Productivity is better than expected and could have performed better if not for the natural calamities that the country has to contend with. Maybe the Bureau of Fisheries under it may try something out of the box. Propose to China to convert that disputed island into a one big marine laboratory. China provides the infrastructures while the Philippines the technical aquatic expertise. Make a 10-mile no-fishing marine haven around the island and guarded by the joint coastguard forces of China, Philippines and Vietnam. The Philippine Coconut Authority under Cabinet Sec. Jun Evasco is about to embark on a massive replanting program.  The Aquino government allocated billions of pesos to fight ‘cocolisap’ infestation but applied the wrong solution. Well, what do we expect from a certain Kiko Pangilinan? The replanting program was a big failure on account of  massive graft in high and low places. Replanting as well as new areas had been programmed by PCA.  Finally we have to give accolade to our Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police for combating internal threats, terrorism and syndicated crime. The AFP and PNP are more prepared and better equipped now than any other time in history. Furthermore we see a disciplined forces in the AFP and while there are a few remaining scalawags in the PNP the cleansing process is done without let-up. We from Mindanao are comfortable and secured with their presence even under the aegis of martial law. If you do not believe me look at the various surveys on the popularity and trust of Filipinos on President Duterte and his government.  This will end my perspectives for year 2017 and we look forward to 2018 the Build, Build, Build era. The beginning of the new Philippines. Mindanao and Davao City, from where I live and write, may have suffered from natural calamities but we had seen, suffered and endured worse scenarios and even man made tragedies than […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  mindanaoexaminerRelated NewsDec 29th, 2017

Taiwan warns Chinese military drills pose enormous threat

  TAIPEI, Taiwan – Frequent and increased Chinese military drills pose an "enormous threat" to Taiwan's security, Taipei warned on Tuesday, December 26, in an annual defense review that starkly highlighted rising cross-strait tensions. China views Taiwan as part of its territory to be reunified at some point – by military ........»»

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