Open season for killing

By: Joel Ruiz Butuyan The killing last month of Mayor Rolando Espinosa of Albuera, Leyte, and his fellow inmate Raul Yap inside a Leyte provincial jail is the most brazen incident of murder perpetrated by police officers in recent memory. Espinosa and Yap were killed by a group of 24 policemen led by Supt. Marvin […] More →

No ‘presumption of regularity’ in police killings

By: Joel Ruiz Butuyan IT’S A mantra that top government officials keep chanting: Police killings enjoy a presumption of regularity. This mantra is used in answer to voices of protest when someone is killed by police under suspicious circumstances, such as when an arrested suspect is killed inside a police car for allegedly attempting to […] More →

Bigger fear of crooked cops

By: Joel Ruiz Butuyan THERE’S A disconnect in the war of words between President Duterte and his critics in the ongoing campaign against illegal drugs. His critics are condemning the means employed, while the President is defending the goal he seeks to achieve. The goal is to cleanse the country of illegal drugs. The means […] More →

Duterte blames the abused, not the abuser

By: Joel Ruiz Butuyan PRESIDENT DUTERTE recently declared that he would work for the abolition of the party-list system because the rich abuse it in complete “mockery of the law.” If abuse by the rich is the criterion for the abolition of public institutions, then Mr. Duterte should work for the abolition of Congress in […] More →

Extrajudicial killings as crime against humanity

By: Joel Ruiz Butuyan A TOTAL of 3,257 extrajudicial killings (EJKs) were committed during the Marcos dictatorship. In contrast, there were 805 drug-related fatalities from May 10 (when Rodrigo Duterte emerged winner of the presidential election) to Aug. 12, per the Inquirer count. If the current rate continues, the total number of EJKs for the […] More →

Prosecutor, judge and executioner

By: Joel Ruiz Butuyan For the first time in our nation’s history, we have a President and a Vice President who both started out as reluctant candidates. Rodrigo Roa Duterte and Maria Leonor Gerona Robredo took their respective oaths of office as the 16th President and 14th Vice President of the Republic of the Philippines […] More →

Comelec told: Explain, act on data leak in 24 hours

Ex-NSCB head Jose Ramon Albert and CenterLaw Philippines will file an administrative complaint against the poll body with the National Privacy Commission after the 24-hour deadline By Michael Bueza @mikebueza MANILA, Philippines – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has been given 24 hours from Monday, April 25, to act immediately on the massive online leak of voters’ […] More →

A tale of two countries

By: Joel Ruiz Butuyan IT HAS 147 volcanoes compared to the Philippines’ 53. It has 300 native languages against the Philippines’ 187. It has 10,000 more islands and 150 million more people than the Philippines. The Republic of Indonesia is the world’s biggest archipelago and the country with the world’s biggest Muslim population. I was […] More →

Beacon of freedom in Southeast Asia

FLEA MARKET OF IDEAS Beacon of freedom in Southeast Asia By: Joel Ruiz Butuyan “HOW DID you do it in the Philippines?” a Malaysian taxi driver asked me, referring to how we Filipinos managed to bring down two of our presidents. I was in Kuala Lumpur two weeks ago as my next stop in a […] More →

Copy of Olongapo court’s decision on Pemberton’s Motion for Reconsideration

Here is the copy of the Olongapo City Regional Trial Court Branch 74’s decision on the Motion for Reconsideration filed by US Marine Joseph Scott Pemberton. Judge Roline Jinez Jabalde granted Pemberton’s motion for reduced penalty and denied him bail. We reiterate that the court upheld its decision that Pemberton is guilty of killing Jennifer Laude. We stress that the lighter penalty […] More →