23 Jan 2016

Medal of Valor to be conferred to two SAF commandos who died in Mamasapano
President Aquino has authorized the posthumous conferment of Medal of Valor to two SAF commandos who died during the Mamasapano mission, which will be commemorated on Monday, a Palace official said.

In a radio interview on Saturday, Presidential Communications Development and Strategic Planning Office Undersecretary Manolo Quezon III confirmed that the President has already authorized the grant of the awards.

“This is the awarding ceremony that will take place, I believe, in Camp Crame. The President authorized the award and among the awards that will be conferred ay ang tinatawag na Medalya ng Kagitingan or the PNP Medal of Valor,” Quezon told dzRB Radyo ng Bayan.

Quezon also said that aside from the awarding of the PNP Medal of Valor, which will be given to two individuals, there will also be the Medalya ng Kabahayanihan or the PNP Distinguished Conduct Medal to be awarded to other members of the SAF 44.

SAF members Senior Inspector Gednat Tabdi and Police Officer 2 Romeo Cempron will receive the Medal of Valor awards on Monday during the PNP’s commemoration of the first anniversary of the Mamasapano incident.

The 44 SAF members were killed in Mamasapano, Maguindanao on Jan. 25, 2015 in a mission to neutralize Indonesian bomb maker Zulkifli Binhir alias Marwan and Filipino terrorist Abdul Basit Usman.

The SAF members killed the Indonesian terrorist, but failed to arrest Usman. Usman was later killed in a clash with authorities.

The police commandos were leaving the site when they encountered members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters resulting in the deaths of its 44 members. PND (as)

Palace happy over favorable assessments of Phl economy by foreign rating agencies
The Palace expressed elation over the good assessments by economists on the Philippine economy, which is expected to uplift the lives of Filipinos over the long term.

In a radio interview Saturday, Presidential Communications Development and Strategic Planning Office Undersecretary Manolo Quezon III said one of the good news is Moody’s Analytics prediction that the full-year expansion for the Philippines should be among the fastest in Asia for the coming year. This is despite the quarter four slowdown from its point of view.

Secondly, Quezon said Fitch Ratings expects more foreign banks setting up shops in the Philippines to open their offices after the Security Bank and Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi deal.

Another item is the NICE (National Information and Credit Evaluation) upgrade of the NICE Investors Services of South Korea. NICE Investors Services raised the Philippines’ credit rating by a notch from BBB minus to BBB—an investment grade, as South Korea cited the reforms in the Philippines and the robustness its economy.

NICE Investors Service, a Seoul-based debt watcher, said the government’s good governance initiatives and the sustained rise in infrastructure investments contributed for the decision to upgrade.

Quezon said the Aquino administration will continue strengthening the economy in its remaining months in office. He added that politics will not matter much, as the important thing is that all Filipinos benefit from these developments in the economy.

“Ang importante dito hindi lang ang administrasyon kundi ang buong bayan na siyang magbebenipisyo sa ganitong mga balita,” Quezon told dzRB Radyo ng Bayan. PND (as)