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#TWenty: The 2018 TomasinoWeb Year-end special

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20. Tito Sotto’s request to take down Inquirer’s articles on Pepsi Paloma

Tito Sotto takes oath as Senate President. Photo grabbed from Rappler.

 

On the evening of July 4, Inquirer.net took down its articles regarding the rape of Pepsi Paloma namely, “The Rape of Pepsi Paloma,” and “Was Pepsi Paloma Murdered?,” following the written “request” of Senate President Tito Sotto sent to the said publication last May 29.

Many have also quizzed, especially the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines as to why, even after six years of publication, Sotto only brought up the issue just now, wherein his newly acquired position as the Senate President in May 21 only added fuel to the fire.

The articles in-question were written by the New York-based columnist, Rodel Rodis and was published last 2014. In his Facebook post where he published Sotto’s request, he said, “If the Inquirer agrees to his requests, a dangerous precedent will be set.” – Cielo Erikah Mae Cinco

READ: The Rape of Philippine Press

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Basketball

Chabi Yo, Nonoy bag MVP and Rookie of the Year honors

Growling Tiger forward Soulemane Chabi Yo was crowned as the season MVP while point guard Mark Nonoy claimed rookie of the year honors in the UAAP season 82 men’s basketball tournament on Wednesday, Nov. 6.

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Photo by Corinne Vizconde/TomasinoWeb

Growling Tiger forward Soulemane Chabi Yo was crowned as the season MVP while point guard Mark Nonoy claimed rookie of the year honors in the UAAP season 82 men’s basketball tournament on Wednesday, Nov. 6. 

Both players were instrumental in snapping UST’s three-year Final Four drought, with Chabi Yo serving as a two-way threat all throughout the season and Nonoy being the chief orchestrator of the team’s league-best offense.

Chabi Yo notched 76 statistical points to finish first in the MVP voting with his averages of 16.9 points, 14.7 rebounds and 1.3 assists, completely outclassing co-import Angelo Kouame, who himself was also among the favorites to claim the individual plum. 

Nonoy on the other hand, had 39.29 statistical points to go along with his season averages of 10.0 points, 3.8 rebounds and 2.3 dimes to edge out fellow frontrunners in teammate Sherwin Concepcion and the streaky Tamaraw guard LJay Gonzales. 

 

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Blogs

Revisiting Galleries and Museums

The country has numerous museums welcoming visitors. For Thomasians, these are only some that are nearby and very accessible. Let’s get ready to discover galleries and the astounding visuals they have to offer. 

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Artwork by Aldrich Aquino

Do you remember the rush of excitement in marching towards the museum and happily lining up in the entrance to see what it looks like inside? The memories might be fleeting but the feeling remains. After all these years, museums still invoke curiosity and wonder.

Every month of October, we are encouraged to revisit the museums all around the country. This month celebrates the Museums and Galleries and is intended to kindle national consciousness in the Filipino; promoting the nation’s rich and distinctive culture, heritage, and national identity embodied in the form of art and cultural, historical, and religious artifacts.

The country has numerous museums welcoming visitors. For Thomasians, these are only some that are nearby and very accessible. Let’s get ready to discover galleries and the astounding visuals they have to offer. 

National Museum of Natural History

museum-of-natural-history

Photo from Rappler

 

One of the most visited museums in the metro and also the largest museum in the Philippines, the National Museum of Natural History puffs its hint of modern architecture mixed with its rich heritage and collection of numerous artifacts.

Located at Teodoro F. Valencia Circle, Ermita, Manila. It opens it doors from 10:00AM to 5:00PM every Tuesday to Sunday. The newly reformed museum boasts a pristine atrium where the “The Tree of Life” rises in the center. Extending upwards, the skydome acts as a natural lightsource. It has now hosted numerous tourists and fellow Filipinos alike. Visitors can ogle on the beautifully designed halls and displays that consist of many artifacts and paintings.

Roaming around the alluring space of the museum, it would instantly make you realize that it is jam packed with literally everything—from marine life to biology to botany, the possibilities are endless. It shows the exquisiteness of our world, engaging us to become more interested in the life that exists around us.

National Museum of Fine Arts 

Photo from National Museum

Amidst the busy streets of Manila, peace can be found at the National Museum of Fine Arts located at Padre Burgos Drive, Manila. It opens at 10:00AM to 5:00PM from Tuesday to Sunday. One of the most famous paintings in the country’s history is displayed in the first floor lobby—Juan Luna’s Spoliarium. The enormous piece could be found hanging on a wide wall, being admired by anyone who enters.

Aside from the Spoliarium, the museum also showcases the works of famous painters such as Felix Resurreccion Hidalgo and Fernando Amorsolo. Aspiring artists, art lovers, or just casual viewers of art will find this museum a safe haven.

Ayala Museum

ayala-museum

Photo from Ayala Museum

Located in the city of business and industry, the Ayala Museum can be found at Makati Ave. cor. Dela Rosa St., Makati City and opens during 9:00AM to 6:00PM from Tuesday to Sunday.

The museum boasts as a major destination for school field trips, showcasing the country’s history from prehistoric times until the EDSA Revolution in 1986. The museum keeps a large number of rare artifacts that aren’t found elsewhere in the Philippines. The display of Philippine History enraptures its visitors—especially the Maritime Vessels Collection that pays tribute to a variety of ancient ships. A collection of pre-Hispanic items are worth looking at as well.

The museum also holds a lot of exhibitions, talks, workshops and even concerts which strengthens the museum’s goal in uplifting the Philippine arts, history, and culture scene vibrant.

Intramuros’ Museums and Galleries

 

Aside from the beauty that Intramuros radiates because of its history, there is more to it than just aesthetics. Its sites and museums houses the pieces and artworks that are part of the walled city’s rich past. 

You can start a museum hopping adventure around the area by starting from the Intramuros and Rizal Bagumbayan Light and Sound Museum which uses images, sounds, and animatronics to tell the history of the Philippines when it was colonized by Spain. 

Following that is Casa Manila Museum which also depicts the Spanish colonial lifestyle and how it influenced the Filipinos back then. The San Agustin Church is a UNESCO Heritage Site and its museum takes pride as well on its religious relics, wooden and ivory statues, the church’s 3500-kilogram bell, and many more. 

san-agustin-museum

Inside the San Agustin Church Museum. Photo from San Agustin Museum Facebook page

Depicting the lives of the largest number of immigrants in our country, the Bahay Tsinoy tells the struggles of the Chinese people, how they established Binondo, and how they connected with the Filipinos despite our differences. 

RIzal Shrine inside Fort Santiago, Intramuros. Photo from nhcp.gov.ph

Last on the list is the two-storey building Rizal Shrine Museum located in Fort Santiago where the Filipinos and Americans were imprisoned including our country’s national hero Jose Rizal. It stores Rizal’s archives and personal valuables such as books, clothing, medical instruments, and other things. 

Inside Museo de Intramuros. Photo from The Philippine Star.

You can also explore and see for yourself the other museums such as the NCCA Gallery, Museo de Intramuros, iMake History Fortress, Destileria  Limtuaco Museum, Instituto Cervantes de Manila, and Fr. George J. Willman SJ Museum. 

León Gallery

Situated in W14 La Fuerza Plaza, 2241 Chino Roces Avenue, Makati City, the León Gallery is the steward of Philippine antiques, Old Master Paintings by Juan Luna and Fernando Amorsolo to modernist modernist works by Fernando Zobel and Diosdado Lorenzo, and and other historical pieces of Filipino art. 

Photo from Rappler

The gallery also hosts exhibitions which features and commemorates the works of contemporary artists as well as antique furniture, ivory, and paintings. They also conduct biddings and auctions on antique furniture and paintings. The gallery definitely exceeds its mission on providing convenient access to contemporary and historical pieces of Filipino art.

UST Museum of Arts and Sciences

In the heart of the campus, is our very own museum that is a place to behold. Our museum has a wide collection of mineral, botanical, and biological artifacts that came from the science courses—more than 400 years ago when the university was beginning. Along with being the oldest university in the Philippines, UST also holds the oldest known museum in the country. The museum opens at 9:00AM to 2:30PM on Sunday and Monday, while it opens at 8:30AM to 5:30PM from Tuesday to Saturday.

Photo from UST Museum Facebook page

Cultural and historical pieces are the prevalent displays in the museum. It has old instruments, clothing, weaponry, and burial jars from different eras from the Philippines, China and Japan. Exuding the university’s pontifical status, the chair that Popes John Paul II and Francis sat on when they visited the country is showcased at the second floor.

The university definitely ignites and strengthens the sciences, Philippine culture and history together with religious artifacts in its museum.

The month of October is not the only time for you to visit these museums, in fact, you can visit museums all year round. Now that art is made more accessible, these displays of Philippine culture can educate us about our identity. By seeing these in our museums—we become far more stimulated to understand their interpretations in the past. 

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Editorial

The mockery of Filipinos’ agony

Many actions and policies of the current administration not only fail to respond to the real needs and difficulties of Filipinos, but also reduces their daily agony to mere ‘challenges’ and experiments. 

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jeep
Photo by Miguel Yap/TomasinoWeb

The transport crisis in the Metro greatly showed its harsh realities in the past weeks. Aside from the horrendous traffic, the long lines in terminals, and the difficulty of hailing a spacious jeepney, the sudden malfunction of LRT-2 added up to the long list of problems and challenges many commuters have to endure. And yet, we can hear and see apathetic solutions from our leaders which are deemed to be ineffective and lacks the true intention of solving the country’s transit problems. Many actions and policies of the current administration not only fail to respond to the real needs and difficulties of Filipinos, but also reduces their daily agony to mere ‘challenges’ and experiments. 

Last Friday, we have seen Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo took a commute to his work from his home in Marikina to Malacañan. For him, this is to show those who challenged him that there really is no transport crisis. Hence, he said in his presscon that day that Filipinos only need to be creative in the traffic and commute problems in the Metro, and to “be creative” for we are known to be tough amidst difficulties. His creativity in his commute to the Palace took him almost four hours after three jeepney rides, an LRT ride, and a motorcycle ride, a struggle which could have been avoided if only there is a reliable public transport system in the Metro. 

Meanwhile, Senator Grace Poe also suggested having exclusive VIP MRT train coaches which will cost around P150-P200 per ride to ‘encourage’ especially upper class people to take public transport. The bill requiring government officials and leaders to take public transport every week has been filed again by Iligan Representative Frederick Siao in the Congress. Instead of providing legitimate solutions to address the transportation crisis, MMDA rides the publicity train by having its spokesperson Celine Pialago to steer the wheel, only to find her suing satirical social media pages instead of representing the struggles of daily Filipino commuters. 

To add to the burden, the current administration also seeks to respond to its traffic problems through neoliberalization of transport system in the country. Among this is the plan to phase out old, traditional jeepneys in 2020 as a response to its traffic problem with modern and eco-friendly ones. Although the proposition sounds good in theory, its effect on public transport and livelihood of jeepney drivers are worse than expected with costs that will surely bury many jeepney drivers and operators in huge debts and loans.

These actions and statements show that the big problem in the country’s transport system. The frequent denial and media publicity will never address these problems effectively but only shows the lack of empathy for the real needs of Filipinos, and mocks the burden they have to endure as a consequence of the selfish acts of many of our leaders.

Commuting from Manila to nearby provinces like Bulacan and Pampanga only takes around one to two hours. Meanwhile, commuting to Fairview in Quezon City, Las Piñas City, or to the nearby City of Antipolo takes a minimum of three hours especially during rush hours. To add to that, commuters have to endure long lines and poor facilities in trains and terminals, and the difficulty of hailing a jeepney or bus ride. As a consequence, many resort to bringing their own cars or using car hailing apps like Grab which only adds to the traffic on the road instead of its one to four passengers joining other commuters in jeepneys, buses or trains which can accommodate a minimum of 20 passengers. These scenarios only show that commuters and public transport is still not the top priority of our government despite other developed countries giving much of its attention to it.

Imagine also the burden of those who have no other option in their daily transport but to take public transport for it is more affordable than getting a taxi, a Grab booking or bringing and having their own car. Many of them are students and workers who experience the terrible transport crisis the most. This problem does not only tire them physically but also affects their performance in their schools and in their jobs, preventing them from reaching their full potential. They are also being deprived of having quality time with their families or with themselves or to manage other responsibilities and jobs they have. In fact, our leaders will not be required to take public transport through a law if only there is a quality, affordable and accessible mass public transport system in the country. Again, all these are the consequence of inefficient policies of our government which should be the one to provide those mentioned basic services and needs to the people it serves. 

Filipinos have long endured the long lines in terminals, hospitals and other governmental institutions. Their true welfare has long been sacrificed and neglected and our leaders seem to be unbothered of the fiasco burdening the country and its people. The government should divert its priority on the real needs of the people it serves and put an end to all its inefficient and elitist policies that only mocks and prolongs the agony of Filipinos.

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