KUWTT: Covid cases up 82% | June 21, 2022

Have a good day. Here are the articles from the Manila Times for Tuesday, June 21, 2022.

READ: Covid cases up 82%

THE Department of Health (DoH) on Monday reported an 82% increase in Covid-19 cases in the country. In its weekly case bulletin, the DoH said 3,051 cases were recorded from June 13 to June 19, a daily average of 436. That’s 82% more than the cases reported from June 6 to June 12. Undersecretary of Health and Spokesperson Rosario Vergeire said the National Capital Region or Metro Manila is particularly experiencing “an onset of spike in case counts” similar to the September 2021 and January 2022 spikes driven by the Delta and Omicron variants. Vergeire made it clear that the current trend cannot be called a “push” and that it will only confuse the minds of the public. She attributed the rise in cases to Omicron subvariants, increased mobility and diminished population immunity due to the slow delivery of booster shots. Of 55 million Filipinos eligible for boosters, only 14 million received boosters.

READ: Marcos to lead DA

PRESIDENT-ELECT Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. will temporarily act as Secretary of the Department of Agriculture (DA) on Monday to address the agriculture sector’s most pressing concerns. At a press briefing, the new leader said the problem in the agricultural sector was “serious”. His decision to lead the agriculture department was not just to make it clear what priority we place on the agricultural sector, but also from a practical perspective to get things moving quickly,” he added. One of his plans is to rebuild the agricultural value chain, and one of the ways to do this is to change the organizational structure of the DA.

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READ: Sara plans in-person classes next school year

VICE President-Elect and incoming Secretary of Education Sara Duterte-Carpio plans to resume full face-to-face classes in the next school year. Outgoing Education Secretary Leonor Briones has said the Department for Education (DepEd) wants all schools to resume physical lessons for the 2022-23 school year. The Ministry of Education said that as of June 16, 32,787 public schools and 1,063 private schools had returned to face-to-face lessons. During a Monday press briefing, Duterte-Carpio said she would meet with DepEd officials on June 25 to organize the transition of teaching online. Duterte-Carpio also said she would follow the initiatives of the current administration for more benefits for teachers.

READ: Bank freezes Okada Manila account

OKADA Manila’s bank accounts have been frozen due to the intra-company dispute in Tiger Resort Leisure and Entertainment Inc. (TRLEI), the operator of the hotel-casino and resort located in Parañaque City. TRLEI legal counsel Estrella Elamparo said the banking institutions involved in freezing Okada Manila’s accounts include BDO Unibank (BDO), Asia United Bank and Union Bank of the Philippines. With the standstill ante order (SQAO) issued by the Supreme Court last April, banks have become more cautious in handling Okada Manila’s financial transactions, Elamparo said. BDO, in particular, also demanded that the former TRLEI board of directors, led by Hajime Tokuda and Byron Yip, and the one formed by Kazuo Okada, led by Filipino businessman Antonio “Tonyboy” Cojuangco and Dindo Espeleta, sign an agreement to pay the salaries of Okada Manila employees.

BUSINESS: Peso weakens further to 54:$1 on Monday

In business, the Philippine peso depreciated further, crossing the $54 per dollar level on Monday. The local currency closed at P54.065 to the dollar on Monday, lower than the close of P53.75 on Friday June 17th. This is the weakest performance since the close of P54.08 to the dollar on October 12, 2018. Monday’s close also has already breached the upper limit of the government’s exchange rate P50-53:1 peso -dollar expected for the year.

SPORTS: NU shoot for UAAP volleyball crown

Leading the sports, National University aim for the season sweep and championship when they take on De La Salle University (DLSU) in Game 2 of the Women’s Volleyball Season 84 Finals. University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) at the Mall of Asia Arena today, June 21. The game is set for 6:30 p.m. after the individual plum award ceremonies. The Lady Bulldogs have won all of their 15 games this season, including a 25-20, 25-12, 25-21 sweep of the Lady Spikers in Game 1 last Saturday. Drawing MVP chants from NU fans, super rookie Bella Belen led the way for NU in this game with 15 points in addition to 13 excellent receptions.

READ: Opinion and Editorial

Antonio Contreras and Yen Makabenta are the front-page columnists today. Contreras laments the inequality of justice, while Makabenta compares the rise of Bongbong Marcos to that of two former prime ministers.

Today’s editorial discusses modest proposals for culture and the arts. Read a full version in the opinion section of the newspaper or listen to the voice of the times.

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On behalf of the Manila Times, this is Aric John Sy Cua reporting. Have a safe Tuesday.

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