Radio Journalist Threatened
Radio Journalist Threatened
QUEZON CITY (CMFR/Pacific Media Watch): On 3 January 2003, the mayor of a city in Pangasinan province, Northern Philippines, allegedly threatened to harm and kill a radio station manager and commentator after he reported that an illegal numbers game was widespread in the mayor's city. The mayor later apologised.
Orly Navarro said that Mayor Julian V. Resuello of San Carlos City threatened him during an informal gathering with media personalities and Pangasinan town mayors at a local hotel. Navarro is the station manager of, and a commentator for Super Radyo in nearby Dagupan City and former president of the Pangasinan Press and Radio Club (PPRC).
In an interview with CMFR on 7 January, Navarro
said that after he was introduced to Resuello, the mayor,
"who was raging like a bull," shouted invectives at him and
attempted to slap him. Navarro added that Resuello
repeatedly threatened to kill him and showed him his gun to
According to Navarro, Resuello kept on saying that "no media person – friend or foe - has the right to criticise" him. Apparently, Resuello was upset about one of Navarro's reports in his radio programme "Super Isyu tan Komentaryo" during which he stated that "jueteng", an illegal numbers game, "is still rampant in San Carlos City."
A press statement by the Katipunan ng mga Mamamahayag sa Pangasinan (League of Journalists of Pangasinan, or KMP) later declared that Navarro "was [just] quoting the result of a survey conducted by the Lingayen-Dagupan [Catholic] archdiocese."
The two other mayors present at the meeting calmed Resuello, ending what could have been a bloody incident.
The KMP, formed as an offshoot of this incident, denounced Resuello's act as "an affront not only to Mr. Navarro but to the Pangasinan media as a whole." The group's statement also noted there have been similar incidents between Resuello and other media personalities in Pangasinan in the past.
Navarro said the PPRC had requested that he come to a meeting on 6 January so that the group could look into the case, but that upon receiving information that Resuello would also be attending, he walked out. "It was like a set-up," Navarro said.
The mayor went to Navarro's radio station on 7 January and apologised to him. Despite Resuello's apologies, however, the broadcaster is still planning "to get justice."
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