The ANC Brief: On the travel ban


Posted at Feb 18 2020 04:15 AM | Updated as of Feb 18 2020 04:40 AM

The world is closely watching the developments of a possible treatment for COVID-19. Here are the stories making the headlines on ANC today:

More Filipino crew members of a Japanese cruise ship are infected with COVID-19. Beijing approved the first drug to fight COVID-19. Macau is to reopen its casinos. Will the country’s travel ban on Macau, Hong Kong and mainland China be lifted any time soon for the sake of OFWs?

Sen. Risa Hontiveros exposed during a Senate hearing a so-called “pastillas” scam among airport immigration officials. Corrupt immigrations officials allegedly receive bribes from Chinese nationals for seamless entry into the country. The officials received P10,000 each in bills rolled into bond paper, hence the reference to “pastillas,” a sweet soft candy wrapped in bond paper. During the hearing, immigration officials said they’ve never heard of the scam but will investigate.

The Senate public services committee headed by Sen. Grace Poe will start hearings on the ABS-CBN franchise renewal. Sen. Franklin Drilon filed a resolution calling for the extension of the ABS-CBN franchise until 2022. All this as the House of Representatives takes its sweet time on the franchise.

Not off the hook
The Palace said Police Lt. Col. Jovie Espenido isn’t off the hook after his name was included in the narco list. President Duterte said he would support Espenido. But Presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said Duterte could have a change of heart regarding Espenido.

Art flair
Norman Crisologo is curating a major section in the upcoming Art Fair Philippines, employing art from a broad range of styles and origins. ANCX talks to the sought-after curator, whose opinion and taste are widely valued by collectors.