The International Federation of Journalists joins
its affiliate the National Union of Philippines (NUJP) in expressing disappointment
in the delayed and minor punishment given to the perpetrator of an assault on a
radio journalist in the Philippines in June 2011.
The IFJ reported on the incident, in which Kalinga Governor Jocel Baac forced himself into the
announcer’s booth of radio station dzRK in Tabuk, Kalinga on June 7 last year,
and hit radio commentator Jerome Tabanganay,
of the government-owned station,
several times using a microphone. Before leaving the booth Baac also threatened
Tabanganay, saying “talk again and I will kill you”.
The entire incident
was caught on video, web-streamed via the internet and heard live by listeners
of Radyo ng Bayan-Kalinga, the only radio station operating in the area.
It took over
thirteen months for the Philippines authorities to decide on a punishment for
Governor Baac, which was one month’s administrative suspension but no criminal
joins the NUJP in expressing disappointment, not only in the time taken for a
resolution of the case but also that the outcome was merely an administrative
suspension without any criminal charges, despite the serious nature of the
“This incident was an example of
the unacceptable use of violence and intimidation against media workers, that
is seen all too often in the Philippines,” said the IFJ Asia-Pacific.
“The IFJ calls on the Philippine authorities to ensure that
breaches of press freedom are dealt with in a timely manner and that
punishments reflect the serious nature of such crimes”.
further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific
on +612 9333 0950
represents more than 600,000 journalists in 131 countries
the IFJ on Twitter: @ifjasiapacific
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