For our special presentation on Straight from the Sky tonight, we tackle issues that’s been hugging the headlines for three weeks now. These are the hostage crisis last Aug.23 which became an international shame for the Filipino people, and that insult inflicted upon us Cebuanos by former Miss Universe Gloria Diaz who made uncalled for remarks that made many Cebuanos indignant.
Tonight our panel of guests is led by Mr. Francisco “Kito” Unchuan of White Sands Resort, representing the hotel and resort industry, Mr. Choy Torralba of Radyo Fuerza representing the broadcast media and Atty. Paul Oaminal to talk about the legalities on these issues. So watch this very interesting show on SkyCable’s channel 15 at 8:00pm tonight.
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This is going to be as short week as this Thursday, we will be celebrating the 132nd birthday of Pres. Sergio Osmeña Sr. which is always a holiday here in Cebu. Then Pres. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III signed proclamation no.26 declaring Friday as a holiday for Eid’l Fitr, the end of Ramadan.
This used to be called “Holiday Economics” under the Arroyo administration. This was supposed to be scrapped under the new Aquino administration; however, given the current realities when we are having a lull in our tourist arrivals, thanks to that botched rescue attempt that killed 8 Hong Kong tourists, I guess the think tanks in the Aquino cabinet realized that long weekends offer a huge advantage in promoting our domestic tourism, which has proven to be very successful in GMA’s administration.
If only you looked at the numbers, the Philippines now has a 90 million population and less than 20 million are the ones who do not belong below the poverty line. So one can say that we have that much middle class Filipinos who can afford to take short holidays. That’s more than the population of Hong Kong and Singapore combined! So instead of Filipinos enjoying foreign countries, they can take the opportunity to visit great vacation places in the Philippines and enjoy the best that our country can offer, while at the same time, helping our own tourism industry.
It seems that Lapulapu City has taken the lead when Mayor Paz Radaza met with some hotel and resort executives and announced that from Sept.20 to Dec. 20, 2010, they would offer a 50 percent discount to domestic tourists as a way of alleviating any loss of business that stemmed from the hostage taking incident. This is an aggressive move on the part of the City of Lapu-Lapu to come out with this promo which I’m sure would bring more domestic tourists to the shores of Mactan.
As we wrote a few days ago, the economic managers of the Aquino administration finally swallowed their pride and for the first time since the elections, publicly admitted that GMA did very well in handling our economy, then it behooves for them to continue with that economic path that allowed our country to fare much better during the great financial debacle of the year 2009. There’s an old American saying that goes, “If it ain’t broke, then don’t fix it!”
During the US elections, the main issues that are discussed, like foreign policies or America’s role as the policeman or the world all take second fiddle to the economic issues, that is why former US Pres. George Bush once quipped “Read my lips… it’s the economy stupid!” In our last May elections, there was no discussion on the Philippine economy by the opposition, otherwise they would have lost the elections. Hence the focus was on the negative issues that plagued the Arroyo administration, which is why they won the Presidency. But now that they are in charge of the country, then they must bite the proverbial bullet and admit to certain realities that happened during GMA’s time as far as the economy was concerned.
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For whatever it is worth, finally, three weeks after the botched rescue attempt at the Quirino Grandstand, Pres. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III last Friday accepted his full responsibility for that very embarrassing incident that caused an international furor and strained our otherwise good relations with the Special Administrative Region (SAR) of Hong Kong and the People’s Republic of China.
P.Noy should have made that statement a few days after that incident, but now that the dust has cleared, it’s not late in the hour to accept his responsibility in that botched rescue attempt. It is a fact that it also took a full two weeks before Dinky Soliman admitted that P.Noy was in Emerald Garden Restaurant during that crisis. As to why it took them that long to make this public admission I really don’t know. So now, it’s apology time!