13 September 2012
Media killings need justice, not just pronouncements — GWP
Gabriela Women’s Party Representative Emmi De Jesus is wary over the possible dismissal of Miguel Belen’s case if Prosecutor Antonio Ramos, who had been absent several times, fails to show up on the scheduled September 15 hearing.
Miguel Belen, a Bicol-based radio commentator died on July 31, 2010, 22 days after he was shot seven times. He is the first media person killed under President Benigno Aquino III’s watch.
“Media killings continue over the years because government after government nurtured warlords and allowed them to grow strong that they practically rule their provinces. The Aquino administration’s weak law enforcement and “padrino” practices further cultivate the culture of impunity. Criminals and paid killers are not afraid of the law anymore making media practitioners, who investigate and expose corruption and various illnesses of government, as vulnerable targets,” said De Jesus.
The Aquino government has yet to resolve the cases of Dr. Robert Ortega, Eddie Apostol, and the abominable Ampatuan massacre which claimed the lives of 32 journalists. According to the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines, 150 Filipino journalists have been killed since 1986, with four victims killed in 2012. Out of these cases, only 10 cases have convictions, and no mastermind has been convicted.
“Before and after the Maguindanao massacre, media killings remain unabated. There was no significant change on the resolution of cases despite repeated pronouncements from the government. The President should realize that media killing is making a mockery of democracy. Ginagawa nitong madugo ang ipinagmamalaki niyang daang matuwid. The President should show his political will by dismantling warlords, and immediately resolve cases of media killings. Deliver justice, not just pronouncements,” ended De Jesus.
REP. EMMI DE JESUS 0917-3221203
Wena Festin, 09156349308