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Yearbook 2012

Philippines. At the beginning of the year, the Senate initiated a civil trial against the Chief Judge of the Supreme Court, Renato Corona, who was suspected of corruption and of trying to prevent a lawsuit against former President Gloria Arroyo. After a dramatic televised trial, Corona was found guilty of corruption - he had secretly secured large bank assets. He was deposed in May and suspended from all public office in the future. It was the first time a high-ranking official was convicted by national law, and it was seen as a success for President Benigno Aquino and his campaign against corruption.

2012 Philippines

According to countryaah, prosecution was also filed in April against President Arroyo, who was arrested in November for suspected election fraud. In July, she was released on bail, but was still prohibited from leaving the country. In October, Arroyo was arrested again, now on suspicion of stealing millions from a state charity lottery. Arroyo, who was sick, was detained at a military hospital.

A conflict with China over the boundary line in the South China Sea intensified in April. When the Philippine Coast Guard attempted to control Chinese fishing boats at the disputed Scarborough Reef, China sent patrol boats blocking Philippine fishermen. Demonstrations against China took place in the capital Manila. The countries have long disputed the supremacy over the reef. The boats were withdrawn in June with reference to approaching storms with no solution to the conflict.

Interior Minister Jesse Robredo died in an air crash in August. Several national mourning days were announced and many publicly expressed their grief as Robredo was very popular and known as an indomitable politician.

In October, the government and the largest Muslim rebel group in the country, the MILF, signed a framework agreement on peace in a new attempt to put a stop to the more than 40-year-old armed conflict in the southern Philippines. The settlement included plans for a Muslim region with increased self-government in the southern Philippines, called Bangsamoro. The MILF was said to have given up its demands on its own state and eventually agreed to disarm, but no details of a future peace agreement were available. The framework agreement was nevertheless seen as a victory for President Aquino, who came to power with promises to try to make peace with the guerrillas.

Aquino was also praised abroad for his fight against corruption. Growth in the Philippines was high, more and more foreign investors were attracted to the country and the Manila Stock Exchange set a record during the year.

The typhoon Bopha, an unusual tropical storm, advanced across the country in December, causing major damage. Hundreds of thousands of people were forced to flee their homes and over 1,500 perished.

A new law was passed on free contraception and family planning. The law was the result of a long political battle where not least the Catholic Church struggled to increase access to contraception. The supporters hoped that the law would lead to reduced poverty and mortality for women.

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