Items filtered by date: Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Tour De Lombok Mandalika 2017 welcomes cyclists from 19 countries

Twenty-one cycling teams from 19 countries including Indonesia, Malaysia, New Zealand and Spain arrived in Lombok to participate in the Tour De Lombok (TDLM) 2017, which was held from April 13 to 16.

TDLM 2017 is classified in the “2.2” category by the Union Cyclists International (UCI) after the Philippines. Divided into four legs totaling in 485.6 kilometers, the route passed through Lombok’s main cultural and tourist attractions.

The first leg of the race took riders from the governor's office in Mataram, the capital city of West Nusa Tenggara, to Kuta Beach in Central Lombok with a total distance of 126.3 kilometers. The second leg had the cyclists racing over 113.3 kilometers from Bangsal to Senaru in North Lombok. The third leg covered 112.1 kilometers from Kuta Beach to Sembalun in Central Lombok. The fourth and final leg was a 112-kilometer circuit race consisting of 10 laps in Mataram city.

The organizers coordinated with the local police to ensure safety, resulting in zero road closures throughout the event.
he head of the National Sports Council's (KONI) West Nusa Tenggara branch, Andi Hadiyanto, said the TLDM 2017 was not the only sports-tourism event held in Lombok this year. According to him, this kind of activity is not only aimed at promoting the captivating beauty of Lombok but also at encouraging sports participation by West Nusa Tenggara youth.

“A lot of cyclists were captivated by the beauty of Lombok and the friendliness of people that they encountered along the route of the race,” said Hadiyanto.

Meanwhile, Tourism Minister Arief Yahya said international-scale sports tourism events could have a direct impact on and high media value for Lombok as well as Indonesia. He expressed optimism that Tour De Lombok would boost specific market interest in recreational sports. (asw)

The Jakarta Post

  • Published in Sports

PNP behind most killings in Duterte's drug war, police insiders claim

The Philippine police have received cash payments for executing drug suspects, planted evidence at crime scenes and carried out most of the killings they have long blamed on vigilantes, said two senior officers who are critical of President Rodrigo Duterte's "war on drugs."
In the most detailed insider accounts yet of the drug war's secret mechanics, the two senior officials challenged the government's explanations of the killings in interviews with Reuters.
Almost 9,000 people, many small-time users and dealers, have been killed since Duterte took office on June 30. Police say about a third of the victims were shot by officers in self-defence during legitimate anti-drug operations. Human rights monitors believe many of the remaining two thirds were killed by paid assassins operating with police backing or by police disguised as vigilantes - a charge the police deny.
The two senior officers, one a retired police intelligence officer and the other an active-duty commander, claimed the killings are in fact orchestrated by the police, including most of those carried out by vigilantes. They spoke with Reuters on the condition of anonymity.
"It is the Philippine National Police doing it," said the retired intelligence officer. "This killing machine must be buried six feet under the ground." He said he was angry about the impact of the killings on police discipline and wanted "to put Duterte on the defensive." Reuters was unable to independently verify if the police are behind vigilante killings.
The president's office and the Philippine police did not respond to questions from Reuters.
'Only the poor are dying'
The intelligence officer has authored an unpublished 26-page report on the conduct of the drug war in an effort to organize opposition to Duterte's campaign. The report, titled "The State-Sponsored Extrajudicial Killings in the Philippines," provides granular detail on the campaign's alleged methods, masterminds and perpetrators. The document has been shared with leaders of the Catholic Church in the Philippines and with the government-funded Commission on Human Rights.
Some of the report's accusations against individuals could not be confirmed by Reuters; the news agency is therefore not publishing the full document. Many of its findings, however, support and expand upon previous investigations of the drug war by Reuters and independent human rights monitors.

The report claims that police are paid to kill not just drug suspects, but also - for 10,000 pesos ($200) a head - rapists, pickpockets, swindlers, gang members, alcoholics and other "troublemakers."
It also claims that civilian members of the so-called Davao Death Squad, which rights activists allege killed hundreds of people in Duterte's hometown of Davao, were drafted to "augment and assist" the police's current nationwide anti-drug operation.
The report doesn't provide documentary evidence for its accusations, which the intelligence officer said were based on accounts from 17 serving or former policemen, including the commander Reuters interviewed. The police commander said he agreed to talk because he was upset that authorities are targeting only petty drug suspects. "Why aren't they killing the suppliers?" he asked. "Only the poor are dying."
The second half of the report is largely political in nature, asserting that Duterte has close ties to Communist forces in the Philippines. Many in the military and police are concerned by what they see as Duterte's leftist sympathies. Since taking office, the president has released Communist rebels from prison to restart peace talks.
The report also calls the drug war a "social cleansing" campaign similar to that launched in Mao Zedong's China, with Duterte aiming to have drug addicts "physically eliminated."
New leads
The Commission on Human Rights has reviewed the report and the accounts could open up new leads in ongoing investigations, said chairman Chito Gascon. Church officials confirmed receiving the report as well.
"We should do all we can to follow any lead that could ultimately shed light on these killings with the view to ultimately holding the perpetrators to account," said Gascon.
The fresh claims come amid growing criticism of the drug war. In February, the country's influential Catholic Church called it a "reign of terror." The campaign has also sparked street protests and lawsuits.
Duterte's police chief, Ronald Dela Rosa, halted police operations for most of February after it emerged that an anti-drug unit had kidnapped and murdered a South Korean businessman last year. The killings continued but at a slower pace. On March 6, Dela Rosa announced that the police were resuming their drug operations.
In March, a former policeman, Arturo Lascanas, testified in the Philippine Senate about his role in vigilante-style killings in the southern city of Davao, where Duterte was once mayor. Lascanas was the second Senate witness to link Duterte to the Davao Death Squad. Duterte denies ordering any killings, either as president or mayor.
In a subsequent interview, Lascanas told Reuters that for over a decade he was paid for carrying out the liquidation of drug suspects and criminals. In the early 1990s, he said, he was paid 3,000 to 5,000 pesos ($60-$100) for each of the "jobs" he performed. By the early 2000s he was earning tens of thousands of pesos for each operation, he said. Lascanas said he had no documentary proof of the payments. He has since left the country.
Unplugging cameras
In the past nine months, police acknowledge having shot dead more than 2,600 suspects during their operations. They say such shootings occur after suspects open fire on undercover officers trying to catch them dealing drugs.
But these so-called "buy-busts" are actually well-planned executions, said the commander interviewed by Reuters. The commander said targets are chosen from lists of suspects drawn up by police and local officials, who later coordinate to unplug security cameras in the neighbourhood where a killing is planned. According to the report, street lamps are also switched off.
"There is no such thing as a legitimate buy-bust," the commander said. "The dealers know the cops and won't sell to them."
Instead, he said, a team of police operatives will execute the target, who is almost always unarmed, then plant guns and drugs at the crime scene to justify the use of deadly force.
"We have to plant evidence for the legality of the operation," the commander said. "We are ordered to do these operations, so we have to protect ourselves."
The commander said officers put the gun in the dead suspect's hand and pull the trigger with the victim's finger so forensic testing will show that the suspect fired a gun.
Late last year, he said, police crime-scene investigators told their fellow officers to place the guns at a slight distance from the suspects, rather than in their hands, to make things look more realistic.
Most drug suspects in his precinct are shot by rookie cops who are either eager for the experience or nominated by their superiors, the commander said. The superiors refer to this as a "baptism by fire."
Each member of the team is quickly paid according to two factors, said the commander: his role in the killing and the target's value.
Cash rewards
According to the report, the cash "reward scales" for drug killings range from 20,000 pesos ($400) for a "street level pusher and user," to 50,000 pesos for a member of a neighborhood council, one million pesos for "distributors, retailers and wholesalers," and five million for "drug lords."
Police officers kill for money, said the commander, but also out of fear: Even the police are afraid of being included on a "watch list" of drug suspects drawn up by police and local officials.
Officials have been killed for not cooperating, he added. He said he was aware of two cases but did not provide details on exactly what happened.
Reuters reported last year that the watch lists were effectively hit lists, with many of those named ending up dead. Another Reuters investigation showed that police officers were killing 97 percent of the suspects they confront in violent buy-bust operations, the strongest evidence yet that the police were summarily executing suspects.
Officers also cooperate because they know the police force's flawed disciplinary system, which fails to adequately investigate even a fraction of the killings, means there is little chance they will get caught, said the intelligence officer.
One sign of the drug war's success, says the government, is that more than a million users and pushers have voluntarily registered with the police, a process known as "surrendering."
But the commander said police are given a quota of "surrenderers," and fill it by using city ordinances to arrest men who are drunk or shirtless - a misdemeanor known as "half-naked" - then forcing them to register as drug suspects.
Reuters learned of the intelligence officer's 26-page report from him and interviewed two Catholic priests in Manila who said they had encouraged him to compile it. One of the priests said he edited the report; the other said he helped distribute it among a small group of clerics and human rights activists. Both are helping organize opposition to Duterte's drug campaign.
The Church's initial reluctance to criticize Duterte's drug war was prompted by a desire to "give him a chance" when he took office, said one of the priests. But the killings, along with the president's overtures to Communists, made many in the Church feel their values were under attack, he said.
The intelligence officer said he hoped the report would be used as evidence at the International Criminal Court. In October, the Hague-based tribunal said it could prosecute suspects if the killings were "committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack against a civilian population." By MANUEL MOGATO and CLAIRE BALDWIN, Reuters


Kevin Spacey to host Broadway's Tony Awards for first time

NEW YORK -- Stage and screen actor Kevin Spacey will step up to host Broadway's Tony Awards, organizers said on Tuesday, less than two months before the national broadcast of the annual theater honors.
It will mark Spacey's first time hosting the Tonys, which will take place in New York on June 11, broadcaster CBS said.
Recent hosts Neil Patrick Harris, Hugh Jackman and James Corden all won raves from critics but apparently were unavailable to do the honors again this year, prompting a wry bit of self-depreciating humor from Spacey.
"I was their 2nd choice for 'Usual Suspects,' 4th choice for 'American Beauty,' and 15th choice to host this year's Tony Awards. I think my career is definitely going in the right direction," he said.
"Maybe I can get short-listed to host the Oscars if everyone else turns it down,” he added.
British actor and talk show host Corden, who helmed the show a year ago, went on to host the Grammy Awards in February.
Spacey, 57, himself a Tony winner for "Lost in Yonkers" as well as a two-time Oscar winner, currently stars in the Netflix political drama "House of Cards." He also served for 10 years as artistic director of London's Old Vic theater company.
"We can’t wait to see the energy he brings to Radio City on Tony night," said Charlotte St. Martin, president of the Broadway League, and Heather Hitchens, president of the American Theatre Wing, in a reference Spacey's wry, sometimes sardonic humor.
Nominations for the Tony Awards, which cover plays, musicals, actors and creative teams on Broadway, will be announced on May 2. Hip-hop historical musical "Hamilton" swept the board last year with 11 wins.
Stars appearing on Broadway this season included Bette Midler in a hit revival of "Hello, Dolly!", as well as Sally Field, Jake Gyllenhaal, Nathan Lane, Glenn Close, Mark Ruffalo, Kevin Kline and Laura Linney.
The 71st Tony Awards will be broadcast live on CBS in a glittering three-hour show from Radio City Music Hall in Manhattan.
Chris Michaud, Reuters
(Reporting by Chris Michaud and Jill Serjeant; editing by Dan Grebler and Tom Brown)


UP to offer honorary degree to Duterte

MANILA – The University of the Philippines (UP) is set to offer President Rodrigo Duterte an honorary degree, which it traditionally gives to the nation’s head of state.
In a report, the Philippine Star quoted a text message from UP Board of Regents (BOR) Chairperson Patricia Licuanan that UP will confer an honorary degree or honoris causa on Duterte, “in keeping with tradition.”
Duterte has yet to accept the offer, the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) chief said.
This was seconded by UP Vice President for Public Affairs Jose Dalisay Jr., who told ABS-CBN News, “to the best of my knowledge, no official communication has been sent to the Palace from the Office of the President of UP about a possible conferment.”
In a memorandum issued early in April, the Office of the UP Secretary cited among matters approved by the BOR, the conferment of Doctor of Laws degrees.
The motion was made by Senator Regent Francis Escudero, and was seconded by Regents Frederick Mikhail “Spocky” Farolan and Angelo Jimenez, both Duterte appointees.
The BOR will not announce the degrees until the conferees accept the honor, the memorandum says.
Dalisay said that there is no given length of time as far as the process is concerned, but an official memorandum will be released only after the honoree accepts in principle.
“Right now, everything in conjecture,” he said.
Dalisay also said that there might be more than one recipient of the honorary degrees, according to the BOR decision.
According to Dalisay, UP has conferred honorary Doctor of Laws degrees on most Presidents of the Republic of the Philippines:
1. Manuel L. Quezon (March 16, 1929);
2. Sergio Osmeña (March 25, 1930);
3. Manuel A. Roxas (April 13, 1948);
4. Elpidio Quirino (Feb. 12, 1949);
5. Emilio Aguinaldo (June 12, 1953);
6. Ramon Magsaysay (April 5, 1955);
7. Carlos P. Garcia (April 7, 1959);
8. Diosdado Macapagal (May 30, 1965);
9. Ferdinand Marcos (May 22, 1966);
10. Jose P. Laurel Sr. (April 20, 1969—posthumous);
11. Corazon Aquino (April 20, 1986);
12. Fidel V. Ramos (April 24, 1993); and
13. Benigno Aquino III (April 17, 2011).
Presidents Joseph Estrada and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo were also offered honorary degrees, but Dalisay said they could find no record of their official replies, if any, regarding the conferment.
Public administration professor and former UP Vice President for Public Affairs Edna Co, meanwhile, said that it is likely that Duterte was suggested for a UP honoris causa, but if he was offered the degree, he has yet to accept it.
As of this writing, Malacanang has remained mum on the matter.
ABS-CBN News got in touch with UP BOR Co-chairperson Danilo Concepcion and Escudero, but both have yet to comment on the issue as of this writing.

Ivy Jean Vibar, ABS-CBN News


3 die in California killing spree; shooter shouts ‘Allahu Akbar’

LOS ANGELES, United States — A 39-year-old man went on a shooting spree in the central California town of Fresno on Tuesday, killing three people and injuring another before being arrested, authorities said.
The suspect, an African-American man named Kori Ali Muhammad, is believed to have shot a security guard last week outside a motel in the city. The guard died in hospital.
Fresno police chief Jerry Dyer told reporters that Muhammad shouted “Allahu Akbar” as he was being taken into custody.
Lieutenant Mark Hudson, a police spokesman, told AFP the FBI had been contacted about the killings and it was too early to say whether they were terror-related.
A spokeswoman for the FBI declined comment, referring media inquiries to local police.
Hudson said Muhammad had also indicated as he was being arrested that he hated white people and the government.
He said Tuesday’s shootings, which took place at around 10:45 am at four different locations in the downtown area of the city, were unprovoked and that up to 16 rounds were fired during the brief rampage.
Muhammad faces four counts of murder and two counts of attempted murder, authorities said.
Hudson said the weapon used in the killings had not been recovered. CBB

  • Published in U.S.

Trump signs ‘Buy American, Hire American’ order

KENOSHA, United States — President Donald Trump moved Tuesday to make good on his emblematic pledge to “Buy American, Hire American” by tightening skilled-worker visa rules, but his room for maneuver remains limited without wider congressional reform.
Speaking in Kenosha, Wisconsin — one of the states that carried him to his upset victory last November — Trump vowed: “We’re going to do everything in our power to make sure more products are stamped with those wonderful words, ‘Made in the USA.'”
Like many of Trump’s executive orders to date, his newest decree will have little practical impact, but sends a signal for government agencies to come forward with ideas for reforming the country’s H-1B visa system.
Trump is looking to stamp out “abuses” of the time-limited work permits, which are pervasive in the US high-tech sector, as a first step towards reforming the regime.
Intended for scientists, engineers and computer programmers, H-1B visas have become an important gateway for the many Indians drawn to Silicon Valley. The United States issues 85,000 each year.
Trump’s decree namely instructs the Labor, Justice and Homeland Security departments to tackle abuses and draw up reforms aimed at bringing the program back to its original intent: awarding visas to the most skilled and highly paid applicants.
The Trump administration argues that the current system has led to a “flood” of relatively low-wage, low-skill workers in the tech sector — and in doing so has harmed American workers.
“We believe jobs must be offered to American workers first,” Trump said.
The US Chamber of Commerce voiced immediate reservations: While it agreed there was room for improvement of the H-1B program, it warned the Trump administration not to do away with it altogether.
“It would be a mistake to close the door on high-skilled workers from around the world who can contribute to American businesses’ growth and expansion and make the US more competitive around the world,” the business lobby said in a statement.
The White House sees the decree as a way to spur momentum towards a broader congressional reform of the H-1B scheme — whose outline remains unclear.
“This is a transitional step to get towards a more skill-based and merit-based version,” a US official told AFP. “There is a lot we can do administratively, and the rest will be done hopefully legislatively.”
In his maiden speech to Congress, on March 1, Trump had proposed introducing an Australian-style merit-based system to reduce the flow of unskilled workers into the United States.
Seeking momentum
Trump’s new decree also includes a “Buy American” component, calling for stricter implementation of existing laws that are intended to favor US-manufactured goods in public tenders.
Without making specific new announcements, the Republican president once more pointed the finger at the North American Free Trade Agreement between the US, Canada and Mexico, dubbing it “a complete and total disaster.”
“It’s been very, very bad for our companies and for our workers and we’re going to make some very big changes or we are going to get rid of NAFTA for once and for all,” he warned.
As Trump’s presidency nears the symbolic 100-day mark, the 70-year-old leader is looking to regain momentum on the domestic front after his flagship travel ban was blocked in court, and his vaunted health reform foundered in Congress.
Trump’s promise of an ambitious tax reform — another central campaign pledge that would notably involve slashing corporate taxes — is also struggling to take shape.
“Our tax reform and tax plan is coming along very well,” Trump said in Wisconsin. “It’s going to be out very soon.”
But Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin acknowledged in the Financial Times earlier Tuesday the reform would likely be delayed, calling the target of getting it through Congress before August “highly aggressive to not realistic at this point.” CBB

Agence France-Presse

  • Published in U.S.

De Lima seeks punishment for child exploitation

MANILA, Philippines - Detained Sen. Leila de Lima is pushing for the immediate passage of the bill seeking to impose stiffer penalties on those who involve children in their criminal activities.

De Lima sought the passage of Senate Bill 195 or the proposed “Act Defining Criminal Exploitation of Children and Increasing Penalties for All Crimes Involving Them,” which she filed before she was detained last February.

“Children are made victims when criminals – in any capacity or extent – involve them in the commission of offenses. As such, this bill seeks to provide stiffer penalties to include imprisonment for individuals who engage, promote, facilitate or induce a child in unlawful activities,” the senator said.

She said minors should be guided, not jailed, as they do not possess the same level of discernment that adults have.

De Lima said minors are “vulnerable to influences that place their lives and future at risk.”

De Lima also considered imprisonment of children as a violation of their human right to development.

She cited Article 15, Section 1 of the Constitution that states children have the right to special protection from all forms of neglect, abuse, exploitation and other conditions prejudicial to their development.

Earlier, other senators opposed proposals to lower the age of criminal liability as pushed by President Duterte, saying it will not rehabilitate youth offenders.

Sen. Sherwin Gatchalian said putting up centers for juvenile offenders has “very good results in reforming the kids” based on his experience in Valenzuela City.

“Almost 70 percent of the kids there were reformed and were brought back to their families. I think we should give the JJW (Juvenile Justice Welfare) Act a chance. It should be fully implemented,” Gatchalian said.

Sen. Juan Miguel Zubiri, an ally of Duterte, also rejected the proposal, especially if the lower limit would be nine years old.

“My daughter is nine years old, they’re innocent at that age,” Zubiri said.

He said he might agree if the lowest age of criminal liability will be at 12 or 13 years old.

Sen. Grace Poe warned the senators that the proposal, if approved along with the re-imposition of the death penalty, would only promote a cruel society.

“What kind of society are we creating if we are going to cruelly punish a child, who does not have a clear understanding of the situation,” Poe said.

She said it was not true that minors today mature early because of social media. She said even if children imitate adults based on what they see in social media, the solution is for parents and guardians to be more vigilant and protective of their wards.

Poe said stiffer penalties should also be imposed on irresponsible parents.

By Paolo Romero (The Philippine Star)


29 dead in Nueva Ecija bus crash

MANILA, Philippines - An overloaded mini-bus fell into a deep ravine along a winding road near the boundary of Nueva Ecija and Nueva Vizcaya before noon yesterday, killing 29 of its passengers, many of whom were traveling back to Manila and Ilocos after the long Lenten break.

Authorities said the accident in Barangay Capintalan in Carranglan town along the Cagayan Valley-Nueva Ecija highway left 38 people injured, many of them critically.

Police said the impact of the fall yanked out the roof of the Leomarick bus with license plate AVZ-757.

The Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) said 18 of the fatalities were females.

A survivor, 31-year-old Ian Boy Fernandez of Sto. Domingo Bambang, said the bus was trying to overtake another bus when its engine stopped. While the driver was trying to restart the engine, he lost control of the vehicle on a sloping portion of the road.

Fernandez, who was with his 38-year-old wife Remedios and eight-year-old son Mico, said he was able to jump off the bus as it rolled downhill and veered toward the ravine.

As he climbed down the ravine to rescue his wife and child, people gathered at the crash site taking photos. It was not clear if his wife and son survived.

Fernandez said the bus was overloaded with more than 60 passengers, 11 of them standing, when it fell into the ravine about 100 feet deep.

Malacañang condoled with the families of the fatalities and vowed to hold accountable those responsible for the tragedy.

“We express our deep condolences to the families of the victims who died in the tragic bus accident in Carranglan, Nueva Ecija,” presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella said.

“We guarantee that the culprits behind the fatal bus mishap will be held accountable,” he added. The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) has ordered the suspension of the Leomarick franchise.

It was not clear as of press time if the driver was among the fatalities. Some survivors said passengers bound for Manila would have disembarked in San Jose, Nueva Ecija to get another bus ride to the capital.

Nueva Vizcaya Gov. Carlos Padilla rushed to the crash site together with personnel from the Philippine Red Cross and the Nueva Vizcaya provincial rescue team which, he said, retrieved 26 bodies from the site at around 3:55 p.m.

He said some of the injured were brought to the Indigenous Hospital in Aritao town, Nueva Vizcaya Provincial Hospital in Bambang town and Veterans Regional Hospital (VRH) in Bayombong town.

Dr. Arlene Hara, NVPH head, confirmed 13 deaths at the hospital alone.

“A still unidentified victim remains in critical condition at the ICU (intensive care unit) of the Nueva Ecija Provincial Hospital,” said Hara.

Dr. Rowena Constantino of the VRH said the dead included a six-month-old infant and seven children as of 5:15 pm.

Senior Supt.Antonio Yarra, director of the Nueva Ecija Provincial Police Office, said the accident took place at around 11:30 a.m. while the bus was traveling at around 75 kph along the treacherous Cagayan Valley-Nueva Ecija highway from Santiago, Isabela to Candon, Ilocos Sur.

“As of 2 p.m. about 40 victims have been taken out of the bus and lifted from the accident site, which is about 80 to 100 feet deep form the road area,” Yarra said.

He added the bus had a capacity of 45 passengers.

Authorities said rescue operation was tedious as personnel had to carefully check the injury of each passenger before removal from the site on a stretcher.

“The Cagayan Valley-Nueva Ecija highway was closed during the rescue operations, which resulted in about a three-kilometer long queue of vehicles,” Michael Calma, of the PDRRMO, added.
‘Accident prone’

Carranglan Nueva Ecija Mayor Mary Abad said Capintala was about 45 minutes from the town proper and is considered an accident prone area.

Reports reaching Camp Crame showed four pick-up vehicles helped bring the victims to hospitals in Bangbang, Nueva Vizcaya, which is closer to the accident area.

The mayor said local police are now coordinating with the bus management as initial reports showed the bus lost its brakes as it maneuvered a sharp curve.

PDRRMO’s Calma said rescue teams were checking the scene until late in the afternoon to ensure all the passengers were accounted for.

“Rescue teams were still checking. If you look closely, the bus appeared to have landed nose first,” he said in Filipino.

Meanwhile, LTFRB spokesperson and board member Aileen Lizada said in a text message the suspension of Leomarick franchise takes effect once the bus operator, initially identified as Leonardo Patulot, receives a copy of the order.

The operator has two buses, including the one which figured in the accident.

Based on initial information from LTFRB field officers, the bus was not out of line.

Lizada said they were looking at human error and the condition of the vehicle as possible cause of the accident.

If there was overloading, the bus operator and dispatcher would be asked to explain. Investigators would also check on travel time and if there was an alternate driver.

The LTFRB recently issued a memorandum setting a six-hour limit of driving for bus drivers.

“There are many angles that we need to thresh out,” she said in an interview over dzMM radio. By Cecille Suerte Felipe and Victor Martin (The Philippine Star)– With Alexis Romero, Ric Sapnu, Manny Galvez, Emmanuel Tupas, Raymund Catindig

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