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One dead in Ironman 70.3 triathlon in Cebu

By Dale Israel/CNN Philippines – A Filipino athlete died at the Ironman 70.3 triathlon in Cebu early Sunday morning. Lapu-Lapu City Police Office director Rommel Cabagnot said the fatality is 47-year-old Eric Nadal Mediovillo of Laguna Province. In a text message to reporters, Cabagnot said Mediovillo was declared dead on Read more »

Balikbayan box ‘rules’ review sought

By Macon Ramos-Araneta/thestandard.com.ph – Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto on Monday called for the immediate “activation and convening” of a joint Senate-House oversight committee to review the implementation of the law governing balikbayan boxes. Recto made the call following mounting complaints on the “unreasonable documentary requirements” in sending balikbayan Read more »

Nationwide smoking ban takes effect July 23

By AC Nicholls/CNN Philippines – Tricycle driver Ricky Francisco has been hooked on cigarettes for years. He said he typically smokes while waiting for passengers, or sometimes even during his rounds. But now, Francisco told CNN Philippines he has no choice but to cut down rather than risk paying fines. Read more »

Top China diplomat Wang Yi to visit Philippines

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi will make a rare trip to the Philippines next week, the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs announced Friday, July 21. In a media advisory, the DFA said Wang will join a bilateral meeting, a signing ceremony, and a news conference at the Shangri-La at The Read more »

Philippines bill proposes jail time for unenthusiastic anthem singers

By Janie Octia and Joshua Berlinger/CNN – Philippines citizens may need to start exercising their vocal chords. The country’s House of Representatives has approved a bill requiring members of the public to sing the country’s national anthem, Lupang Hinirang, “with fervor” whenever it is played publicly. Those who are convicted Read more »

Philippines outsourcing: ‘Customers want people, not robots’

By Timothy McDonald/BBC News, Manila – In a Manila call centre, Sarah Prestoza spends hours helping exasperated callers on the other side of the world troubleshoot problems with their internet connections. Almost all of them are in a bad mood; some are rude, others are racist. A few “difficult callers” Read more »