THE NATIONAL PRESS CLUB of the Philippines (NPC) denounced the killing of a television cameraman in Cavite province on Thursday as it expressed utter disgust over the Aquino government’s lackluster efforts in preventing such heinous crime.
“The killing today in cold-blood of Mr. Jonathan Oldan, assistant cameraman of CNN Philippines in Imus City, Cavite by still unidentified gunmen again highlights the government’s apathy, or lack of interest, over the horrendous state of media killings in the country,” said NPC president Joel Sy Egco of The Manila TImes.
“We note that Mr. Oldan was killed in Cavite where the murder only last year of our colleague, Rubie Garcia, is yet to be solved by the authorities,” he bewailed.
Garcia, who was member of the NPC, correspondent for the tabloid Remate and president of a regional media group, was gunned down inside her house in Bacoor last April 6, 2014.
Egco added that as the Aquino administration nears the end of its term, members of the press have more reason to be wary of more attacks in their rank and to be harassed, noting that violence peaks during an election year.
“Not only are members of the press being killed with impunity, they are also subjected to various forms of harassments, such as the recent the threat of Cavite Cong. Elpidio Barzaga to physically detain colleague Christine Herrera of The Standard for contempt in relation to the case of Chinese fugitive Wang Bo,” the NPC head added.
On Thursday, NPC vice president Benny Antiporda received a subpoena from the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) in connection with the Wang Bo case, to the dismay of Club officers.
“All of these,” Egco stressed, “point to a bleak prospect of press freedom under the current dispensation.”
Joel Sy Egco
June 25, 2015