In the UAAP, the Ateneo Blue Eagles clinch solo first place, and the twice-to-beat advantage with a grueling 68-66 win over the UST Growling Tigers. It seemed as if the Blue Eagles had something going when they built a 13-point lead, but it quickly evaporated as the Tigers came clawing back to keep the game close down the stretch. This time, however, the fabled Tigers' luck ran out, as star center Karim Abdul was called for both a goal-tending violation, and a foul, giving the Blue Eagles a 2-point lead with 7 seconds to go. Aljon Mariano flubbed a 3-point shot, and that was the game for Ateneo.
Now, the Blue Eagles await their opponent in the Final Four. Given the standings, it could be anyone: FEU, UST, NU, or La Salle. Today's games will help clear up the playoff picture.
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Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago was in full battle mode as she grilled former DILG Undersecretary Rico Puno regarding some alleged questionable deals in the purchase of guns for the police. However, she was unable to get anything substantial (at least, to bolster her accusations against Puno), and was reduced to being acerbic and biting.
I was supposed to write about this last week, but, after having taken a look at both sides, it appears that there is more to Puno than meets the eye. Now, the President is faced with the choice of appointing Puno to a less controversial and sensitive post, or allow his shooting buddy to retire quietly to his farm.
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With the appointment of former Senator and DOTC Secretary Mar Roxas to the DILG post, I'm expecting that the Liberal Party (LP) will attempt to strengthen its hold on local governments as it gears up for next year's elections. While I'm hoping that Roxas will continue the reforms that the late DILG Secretary Jesse Robredo started, I'm not sure if Roxas will be able to resist the temptation to use his powerful position to consolidate his forces, since Roxas will likely make a run for the Presidency in 2016.
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The current drive against politicians' self-aggrandizement has gathered enough momentum to actually force some politicians to take down their posters proclaiming their supposed accomplishments. Thanks to the anti-Epal movement, people have become more aware of the issue, and are actively snapping shots of politicians' follies and posting them online. Here's hoping that the movement is able to sustain its efforts going into next year's elections, so that people won't vote for candidates who persist in this arrogant method of claiming credit.