2008 in the Philippines

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2008 in the Philippines
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2008 in the Philippines details events of note that happened in the Philippines in 2008.






  • March 6 - Several members of Congress call for an investigation into a 2004 joint oil exploration agreement between the Philippines, China and Vietnam over the disputed Spratly Islands, claiming that the agreement was unconstitutional and infringed on national sovereignty.[11]
  • March 6 - Filipino authorities announce the arrest of three men from Jordan and Indonesia in connection with an alleged plot to bomb the United States embassy and three other foreign missions in Manila. Two other suspects in the plot were later arrested in Boracay.[12]



  • May 19 - The Manila Police District said that the bank robbers responsible for the murders in Paco, Manila and in Cabuyao, Laguna are the same. They also believed that the bank robbers are former members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.[26]
  • May 27 - The Manila Electric Company held its tension-filled annual stockholders meeting, which lasted for more than 13 hours, making it the longest stockholders' meeting in Philippine corporate history.. The head of the state pension fund Government Service Insurance System Winston Garcia filed a motion to the Securities and Exchange Commission to suspend the stockholders' meeting after it questioned the proxy votes in favor of the Lopez family. The MERALCO board proceeded with the company's stockholders' meeting, defying a cease and desist order issued by the Securities and Exchange Commission after it questioned the authenticity of the injunction order. After the rally and resistance of the stockholders against the bloc of Winston Garcia, the Lopez family retained control of MERALCO. The stockholders awarded five board seats to its representatives and only four seats to the representatives of the government. It took independent auditor SGV and Co. seven hours to come out with the results of the voting.[27]


Ces Drilon kidnapping[28][edit]

  • June 8 - Ces Orena-Drilon, news anchor of ABS-CBN's late night television program Bandila, together with her crew and a Mindanao university professor, was initially reported to have been kidnapped by the Abu Sayyaf in Maimbung, Sulu, by the rebel group Abu Sayyaf.
  • June 10 - ABS-CBN management issued an official statement, saying that Drilon and her crew are missing in Sulu.[29]
  • June 11 - ABS-CBN management confirmed that Drilon and her crew have been kidnapped for ransom in Sulu but declared that it "will abide by its policy not to pay ransom because this would embolden kidnap for ransom groups to abduct other journalists..."[30]
  • June 12 - Angelo Valderama, the assistant cameraman from Drilon's crew, was released. The abductors named Indanan, Sulu mayor Alvarez S. Isnaji as their emissary in the ongoing negotiations for the other captives' release.
  • June 16 - The kidnappers Abu Sayyaf issued an ultimatum. The rebel group demanded for ransom amounting to P15 million by noontime of June 17, in exchange for the release of Drilon, Encarnacion and Dinampo.
  • June 17 - The Abu Sayyaf extended their deadline for the ransom payment. Later during the day, PNP Chief Avelino Razon said that Drilon and the other hostages are expected to be released within the next few hours. Drilon and the hostages were freed shortly before midnight.
  • June 18 - Ces Drilon and her crew were taken to Jolo, Sulu. Afterwards, they were brought by the Philippine army to Zamboanga city for a press conference. Philippine Senator Loren Legarda joined the released hostages and was reported to be the negotiator to the Abu Sayyaf. Legarda and the released hostages flew afterwards to Manila for another press conferences, and were brought to The Medical City afterwards for medication.
  • June 19 - PNP declared the Isnajis as suspects in the kidnapping of Drilon, her crew, and Dinampo.

Typhoon Frank (Fengshen)[edit]

  • June 19 - Typhoon Frank made landfall in eastern Samar in the central Philippines and travelled northwest over the islands.[31] Fengshen was initially forecast to go through Bicol Region but later on shifted its course further westward, eventually going towards the direction of Mindoro Province. However, before even reaching Mindoro it again shifted its direction northward towards the direction of Metro Manila, mainly because of the weakening of the High Pressure area system in the northern part of the Philippines.[32]
  • June 21 - The ship MV Princess of the Stars, owned by Sulpicio Lines that carried 626 passengers and 121 crew members, stalled in rough seas near Sibuyan Island in the central Philippines. The ship left Manila Saturday morning. Typhoon Frank caused the ship to sink, though it was previously reported that the ship experienced engine failure.[33]
  • June 22 - Typhoon Frank crossed Metro Manila between 5 am and 6 am Sunday.
  • June 24 - President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and US President George W. Bush had a meeting at the Oval Palace in White House as part of the Philippine President's 10-day working visit in the USA. Issues on oil and food prices and terrorism were reportedly discussed in their meeting.[34]
  • June 29 - President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo met with Republican White House Presidential candidate John McCain. The President expressed her gratefulness to the latter's support for the approval of the Veterans Equity bill. Other issues like terrorism in Mindanao were also discussed.[35]


  • July 24 - President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo appointed former Senator Ralph Recto as the socioeconomic planning secretary and director general of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA).[36]
  • July 25 - a Qantas Boeing 747 operating Flight 30, headed from London to Melbourne with a stop at Hong Kong, made an emergency landing at the Manila airport. A gaping hole on the belly near the right wing was torn from the fuselage in mid-air when a large piece of what appeared to be canvas and a red piece of insulation material stuck out of the fuselage, pushed by an oxygen tank explosion. The 747 was carrying 356 passengers and 19 crew, but there were no reported injuries or fatalities.[37]
  • July 28 - President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo delivered her eight State of the Nation Address (SONA).[38][39]
  • July 31 - Fitness.Fashion, a catwalk team-up between some of the country’s top designers and best-selling activewear brands, at the Rigodon Ballroom of the Peninsula Manila in Makati City, sponsored by Samsung and Inquirer Lifestyle[40]


  • August 8 - After 16 years of broadcast, ABC-5 ended its commercial operations on Friday evening at 22:00 (10:00 PM).
  • August 9 - at 19.00 (7:00 PM) local time, ABC-5 was rebranded as TV5 and launched its new programs.[41][42][43] However, despite the name change, the corporate name will still be Associated Broadcasting Company and Tonyboy Cojuangco will remain its CEO.[44]
  • August 30 - The Eraserheads had their reunion at the Fort Bonifacio City Open Grounds in Taguig City. Its a one night concert but after the 1st set(which they play only 15 songs) the concert had to be cut short because of Ely Buendia's worsing health condition and he was sent to the hospital.The media hailed the event a "concert of the year" in 2008 even if the event cut short.


  • October 8 - ABS-CBN celebrates its 55th anniversary and unveils the TV plug "Beyond Television", describing ABS-CBN's transformation from a small television network in 1953 into a full-fledged media conglomerate with businesses beyond television.
  • October 13 - Jollibee celebrates its 30th anniversary.


  • November 19 - The House Committee on Public Order and Safety launched its own investigation into the "euro generals". Nueva Ecija Representative Rodolfo Antonino, panel chairman, said that the panel has sent out invitations to all police officers who went to Russia, retired national Police comptroller Eliseo de la Paz and Local Governments Secretary Ronaldo Puno. Also invited were Budget and Management Secretary Rolando Andaya and a senior representative from the Commission on Audit.[50] The panel is also reviewing reports of the Philippine National Police and the Napolcom.[51]


  • December 5 - Sixteen persons - 10 suspected robbers, one policeman, four civilians inclding seven-year-old girl Lia De Vera were killed in a shootout incident inside the United Parañaque Subdivision 4, Parañaque City.[52]

National holidays[edit]

Holidays in italics are "special days", while those in regular type are "regular holidays".

In addition, several other places observe local holidays, such as the foundation of their town. These are also "special days."

Not sure[edit]




These are TV programs that premiered and had their finales this year; new seasons and miniseries are excluded.





  1. ^ Until 4 February 2008
  2. ^ Beginning 5 February 2008
  3. ^ 2 die, scores hurt in Black Nazarene feast--police By Thea Alberto, Philippine Daily Inquirer. 15:25:00 01/09/2008
  4. ^ Augusto B. Santos (2008-01-31). "STATEMENT OF SECRETARY AUGUSTO B. SANTOS ON THE RELEASE OF THE FY 2007 NATIONAL INCOME ACCOUNTS - 31 JANUARY 2008". National Economic and Development Authority. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  5. ^ Cheryl Arcibal (2008-01-31). "Economy soars 7.3% in '07, fastest growth in 31 years". GMANews.TV (GMA Network). Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  6. ^ Maila Ager (2008-02-05). "Nograles is new House Speaker". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Archived from the original on 7 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-02-05. 
  7. ^ "De Venecia declares ‘war’ against Arroyo". Philippine Daily Inquirer. 2008-02-04. Archived from the original on 7 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-02-05. 
  8. ^ Efren Danao; Agence France-Presse (2008-02-09). "Bribes the ‘norm’ in system: Lozada confirms P200-M bribe to Neri". Manila Times. Archived from the original on 2008-02-11. Retrieved 2008-02-09. 
  9. ^ Veronica Uy (2008-02-08). "Lozada links First Gentleman, Abalos to NBN deal". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Archived from the original on 8 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-02-09. 
  10. ^ Jay B. Rempillo (2008-02-15). "SC Nullifies Government Warning Against Airing of ‘Hello Garci’ Tapes". Supreme Court of the Philippines. Retrieved 2008-03-19. [dead link]
  11. ^ Maila Ager (2008-03-06). "Solons seek probe of Spratlys deal with China". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Archived from the original on 9 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-19. 
  12. ^ Alcuin Papa; Tarra Quismundo (2008-03-14). "US, Australian agents to grill 3 suspected terrorists". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Archived from the original on 20 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-19. 
  13. ^ "Imelda Marcos Acquitted, Again". New York Times. 2008-03-11. Archived from the original on 14 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-19. 
  14. ^ "Pacquiao takes WBC title from Marquez". GMANews.TV. 2008-03-16. Retrieved 2008-03-19. 
  15. ^ Tetch Torres (2008-03-17). "Labor chief takes oath as Supreme Court Justice". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Archived from the original on 17 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-17. 
  16. ^ Pete Yost, Associated Press (2008-03-17). "Victims Battle Over Marcos' Money". Washington Post. Retrieved 2008-03-19. [dead link]
  17. ^ "Cory Aquino has colon cancer--family". ABS-CBN News Online. 2008-03-24. Retrieved 2008-03-24. [dead link]
  18. ^ Rey E. Requejo; Fel V. Maragay; Joyce Pangco Pañares (2008-03-26). "High court upholds Palace position on Senate hearings". Manila Standard Today. Retrieved 2008-04-10. 
  19. ^ Jim Gomez, Associated Press (2008-04-01). "Philippines: No Kidneys for Foreigners?". Washington Post. Retrieved 2008-04-10. [dead link]
  20. ^ Teresa Cerojano, Associated Press (2008-04-03). "Palau Leader Stranded at Manila Airport". Washington Post. Retrieved 2008-04-10. [dead link]
  21. ^ Christine Avendaño (2008-04-08). "Rice import quotas lifted". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Archived from the original on 17 April 2008. Retrieved 2008-04-10. 
  22. ^ "Philippines Police Seize Bomb Materials". New York Times. Associated Press. 2008-04-09. Retrieved 2008-04-10. [dead link]
  23. ^ Carlos H. Conde (2008-04-09). "9 Officers Sentenced in Philippine Coup Plot". New York Times. Retrieved 2008-04-10. 
  24. ^ Raymond Africa, with Reuters (2008-05-19). "9 ‘executed’ in Laguna bank rob". Malaya (newspaper). Archived from the original on May 24, 2011. Retrieved 2008-06-07. 
  25. ^ GMANews.TV (2008-05-18). "Survivor in Laguna bank heist dies; police chief axed". GMANews.TV (GMA Network). Retrieved 2008-06-07. 
  26. ^ Mark Merueñas (2008-05-19). "MPD: Ex-soldiers could be behind Manila, Laguna robberies". GMANews.TV (GMA Network). Retrieved 2008-06-07. 
  27. ^ Patricia De Leon (2008-05-27). "Lopez family retains control of Meralco after 13-hour meeting". GMANews.TV (GMA Network). Retrieved 2008-06-30. 
  28. ^ "MPD: Ces Drilon kidnapping". GMANews.TV (GMA Network). 2008-06-20. Retrieved 2008-06-30. 
  29. ^ "(Update) ABS-CBN: Official Statement on Ces Drilon". ABS-CBNNews.com (ABS-CBN News). 2008-06-10. Retrieved 2008-06-30. [dead link]
  30. ^ "ABS-CBN Official Statement on Ces Drilon". ABS-CBNNews.com (ABS-CBN News). 2008-06-11. Retrieved 2008-06-30. [dead link]
  31. ^ "Typhoon Frank (Fengshen)". PAGASA. 2008-06-20. Retrieved 2008-06-20. 
  32. ^ "PAGASA says typhoon had erratic movement". Philippine Daily Inquirer. 2008-06-23. Archived from the original on June 27, 2008. Retrieved 2008-06-23. 
  33. ^ "Philippine ferry carrying over 800 sinking in storm: officials". Yahoo! News. 2008-06-22. Archived from the original on 2008-06-24. Retrieved 2008-06-22. 
  34. ^ "President Bush Meets with President Arroyo of the Philippines". White House. 2008-06-23. Retrieved 2008-06-30. 
  35. ^ "Arroyo-McCain meeting tackles 'hard, soft' approach to Mindanao - Palace". GMANews.TV. 2008-06-29. Retrieved 2008-06-30. 
  36. ^ "Arroyo names Ralph Recto NEDA chief". Inquirer.net. 2008-07-24. Archived from the original on 27 July 2008. Retrieved 2008-07-28. 
  37. ^ Qantas 747 makes emergency landing at Manila – Philstar.com – The Filipino global community
  38. ^ "Final SONA Speech". ABS-CBN News. 2008-07-28. Retrieved 2008-07-28. [dead link]
  39. ^ "ARROYO'S STATE OF THE NATION ADDRESS". GMA News.TV. 2008-07-28. Retrieved 2008-07-28. 
  40. ^ Style statement Sporty - INQUIRER.net, Philippine News for Filipinos
  41. ^ Tony Boy takes a partner INQUIRER.net
  42. ^ From ABC-5 to TV5
  43. ^ From ABC5 to TV5
  44. ^ Tonyboy still CEO of TV5
  45. ^ www.abs-cbnnews.com, Death toll in Tagaytay jeepney plunge climbs to 9
  46. ^ gmanews.tv, 7 killed as jeep plunges into ravine in Tagaytay
  47. ^ earthtimes.org/articles, Seven killed in road collision in the northern Philippines
  48. ^ gmanews.tv/story, Overtaking bus slams into car in Pampanga; seven killed
  49. ^ Bus-Revo smashup kills 6, hurts 30 11 January 2008
  50. ^ "House to probe 'euro generals' scandal, too". ABS-CBN News. 2008-11-19. Retrieved 2008-12-04. 
  51. ^ Martin, Sammy (2008-11-14). "House to push probe on 'euro generals'". The Manila Times. Retrieved 2008-12-04. 
  52. ^ 16 reported killed in Parañaque shootout
  53. ^ "Pacquiao KOs Diaz in 9th round for 4th world title". GMANews.TV. 2008-06-29. Retrieved 2008-06-30.