4 October 2023

Digital Technology Guru

Digital Technology Guru Reviews

Commission on Elections Warns E-Wallet Operators About Vote Buying

3 min read
Commission on Elections Warns E-Wallet Operators About Vote Buying

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has issued a warning to electronic wallet operators about allowing candidates to use their apps for vote buying in the upcoming Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections. Comelec Chairman George Garcia stated that the agency has informed companies such as GCash and Maya that they may face charges for conspiracy to commit vote-buying. The companies have been advised to monitor high-volume transactions, particularly in the days leading up to the election, and to be cautious when money is sent to multiple people in one day. Garcia mentioned that these companies have pledged their support to Comelec’s efforts against vote-buying, and the poll body intends to sign a memorandum of agreement with e-wallet companies. The Comelec also plans to coordinate with the Anti-Money Laundering Council and the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas to monitor large transactions on GCash and PayMaya. Violators may face imprisonment for up to six years.

Majority of Filipinos Favor Legalizing Medical Marijuana

A recent study conducted independent think tank Capstone-Intel Corp. revealed that 63% of Filipinos surveyed support the legalization of medical marijuana. The respondents expressed their approval as long as there is more research conducted on the topic and strict policy guidelines are in place for access and dosage control. Additionally, the need for more awareness and education on medical marijuana was cited the respondents. The study also found that 38% of the respondents believed that medical marijuana could provide a viable solution for patients who have not found successful treatments through conventional medicine. 49% of the respondents called for further research and reviews on the benefits and drawbacks of using cannabis for medical purposes. The study highlighted the importance of regulating medical marijuana to guarantee its quality, safety, and proper dosage control.

Agribusiness Key to Sustainable Rice Production

Former Agriculture Secretary William Dar emphasized the importance of investing in agriculture and focusing on agribusiness in order to achieve sustainable rice production. Dar suggested treating farming and fishing as agribusiness ventures which can boost the farming industry. He highlighted the significance of farm clustering, stating that farmers can be more productive and earn higher incomes looking at the whole value chain. Dar also emphasized the need to invest in irrigation infrastructure to improve the long-term sustainability of rice production. He suggested that the National Irrigation Administration could achieve its target of irrigating 1 million hectares of farmlands every year within the next five years through private-public partnerships. Dar also mentioned the importance of building more farm-to-market roads to enhance agricultural productivity.

Lia Flood Death Toll Estimated at 11,300

Following a devastating flood in the city of Derna, Lia, estimates of the death toll vary widely. While the official death toll is reported to be 3,166, a United Nations report states that the toll from Derna alone has risen to 11,300. The report also states that another 10,100 people are still missing in the city. Aid is now arriving in Lia as the international community mobilizes to assist with the aftermath of the deadly flood. At least 40,000 people have been displaced across northeastern Lia, according to the International Organization for Migration. Two dams upstream from Derna burst under the pressure of torrential rains from Storm “Daniel.” These dams were built to protect the city after it experienced significant flooding in the past.

Analysts Predict No Change in Key Interest Rates

Analysts believe that the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) will keep key interest rates unchanged due to well-anchored inflation expectations. Despite a slight uptick in inflation last month, a fourth successive pause in interest rates is expected, especially as the US Federal Reserve is also anticipated to hold rates steady. The BSP’s policy rate currently stands at 6.25 percent, and a pause is expected after a series of rate hikes in the past. The BSP ordered a pause in May of this year after inflation started declining, and two more pauses followed due to continued easing in consumer price growth. Renewed price pressures may prompt the BSP to make changes in the future.

– The Manila Times – Comelec warns vs digital vote buying
– The Manila Times – Pinoys back legalizing medical marijuana
– The Manila Times – Agribusiness key to sustainable rice production
– The Manila Times – Lia flood death toll estimated at 11,300
– The Manila Times – Analysts: Key rates to stay unchanged