MERGE President Rodrigo Duterte delivers his expletive-free 48-minute SONA with Senate President Vicente Sotto (left) and House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, who was ousted last night, sitting behind him.*

Visayan bloc backs
Arroyo speakership

MANILA – Majority of the Visayan Bloc members voted for a change in the top leadership of the House of Representative and Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo (Pampanga, 2nd District) as its Speaker, Rep. Alfredo Benitez (Neg. Occ., 3rd District) said last night.

Arroyo, who was deputy Speaker of Luzon, was voted the first female head of the House of Representatives by 184 members with 12 abstentions in a session convened immediately after the State of the Nation Address of President Rodrigo Duterte.

She replaced Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez (Davao del Norte, 1st District). moremoremore

Duterte vows chilling war vs. drugs

MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte yesterday declared in his State of the Nation Address that the war against illegal drugs “is far from over”.

Duterte, who declared during the presidential campaign that he would eliminate the problem of illegal drugs in six months, said that the war resulted in the seizure of illegal drugs worth millions of pesos before, but run into billions in peso value today.

“I can only shudder at the harm that those drugs could have caused had they reached the streets of every province, city, municipality, barangay and community throughout the country,” Duterte said in his 48-minute speech, that was applauded 34 times. moremoremore


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State of the Nation
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Just come home


Bacolod collects P412M
in biz tax January-June

A total of P412,382,176.56 in business tax was collected by the Bacolod City government in the first half of the year, records of the Permits and License Division of the Office of the Mayor showed.

The amount was generated from 21,399 business permits issued by the PLD, divided into the following status: additional – 134, new – 3,314, and renewal – 17,891.

In January, P387,462,463.07 in business tax was collected and 16,074 permits were issued; in February, P12,044,755.95 was collected from 2,922 permits.