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National Newsbits for August 14, 2014


Today is the feast day of Saint Maximilian Mary Kolbe, the founder of the Militia of the Immaculata (Army of Mary), and the patron of journalists, families, prisoners, and pro-life advocates.  Today, special masses will be held at 6 a.m. and at 6 p.m. at the St. Maximilian Mary Kolbe Parish on Kaligayahan, Novaliches, Quezon City. In his native Poland, hundreds of pilgrims and devotees traditionally gather on his feast day at his major shrine, the Basilica of the Immaculate Mediatrix of Grace to offer special prayers. St. Maximilian was known as the “Apostle of Consecration to Mary” and a martyr of charity. Ordained a priest in 1918, he founded the Militia of the Immaculata in 1917 to work for the conversion of sinners and the enemies of the Catholic Church through the Intercession of the Blessed Mother. His main apostolate was to help spread devotion to the Virgin Mary. (Christina I. Hermoso)


The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) on Tuesday produced another instant millionaire, a bettor in Cagayan de Oro City who won Super Lotto 6/49’s P39-million jackpot last August 12. The lucky bettor matched the winning combination  of 29-48-26-42-09-02. Super Lotto’s Aug. 12 draw offered a total of P39,252,540 prize money. Meanwhile, 20 bettors each won the second prize of P48,360 for getting five of the winning numbers; and R890 for each of 864 punters who guessed four numbers. Super Lotto’s prize will revert to the minimum P16 million which will increase progressively until another bettor hits the jackpot. (Edd K. Usman)


The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) is monitoring a new low pressure area (LPA) east of the country that may enter the country’s area of responsibility on Friday. PAGASA senior weather forecaster Rene Paciente said the LPA is still outside the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR) at about 1,850 kilometers east of Southern Luzon as of Wednesday morning.  If it maintains its northwest track, the LPA will enter the country’s vicinity on Friday, Paciente said. Once it intensifies into a tropical depression, it will be known locally as “Kanor,” the second tropical cyclone inside the PAR this month and 11th this year. PAGASA expects three or four tropical cyclones this month. Paciente, however, said “Kanor” is not likely to make landfall. (Ellalyn B. De Vera)


State prosecutors have asked the Sandiganbayan to deny the request of lawyers of alleged pork barrel mastermind Janet Lim Napoles to subpoena the bank accounts, travel records, and the records of real properties and registered vehicles of the whistleblowers.  In a motion submitted before the Sandiganbayan Fifth Division, the prosecutors said the whistleblowers are “not the accused in this case.” The lawyers of the Napoles requested the court to subpoena the records of whistleblowers Benhur Luy, Marina Sula, and Merlina Sunas, including travel history from the Bureau of Immigration (BI), real property registered under their names at the Land Registration Authority (LRA), and vehicles registered under their names at the Land Transportation Office (LTO). The lawyers also asked the court to subpoena from six banks the accounts of the three whistleblowers as well that of Gertrudes Luy, Arthur Luy and Abegail Umali. (Jeffrey Damicog)