By: Gail T. Momblan
THE government has committed its full involvement in solving cases of media killings and violence in the Philippines, the Presidential Task Force on Media Security (PTFoMS) said.
Undersecretary Jose Joel Sy Egco, PTFoMS Executive Director, said the country improved in the global impunity index for journalists for its relentless efforts in the fight against media violence.
“Yung number one mandate natin is to protect the life, liberty and security of the media workers and their families,” he said.
Egco said that the PTFoMS has an inventory of media violence cases in every region so they can monitor those cases under trial and reinvestigate if necessary.
Nine media practitioners were killed in the past two years, according to Egco. Two of them had been confirmed as work-related killings.
Egco, however, failed to further present the cases in Western Visayas.
“I’m not sure kung mayroong kaso sa Region 6 na may conviction,” he said.
Stakeholders including the government offices, law enforcement agencies, the academe, and media practitioners were gathered for the first time to tackle media security.
Twenty media practitioners from the Region 6 took part in the discussion.
The Operational Guidelines of Administrative Order No. 1, which established the lead coordinating body tasked to investigate media killings, were presented to the attendees on Dec 5, 2018 at the Iloilo Convention Center in Mandurriao district, Iloilo City.
The seminar primarily underscored the role of the Presidential Task Force on Media Security composed of the Philippine National Police (PNP); National Bureau of Investigation (NBI); Department of Justice (DOJ); Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP); among others, in protecting and handling cases of media practitioners.
The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP), Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas (KBP), Philippine Press Institute (PPI), Publishers Association of the Philippines, Inc. (PAPI), National Press Club (NPC) were invited as observers.
The introduction of the Operational Guidelines of Administrative Order No. 1 in Iloilo City was the last leg of the seminar which was attended by stakeholders from Regions IV-B, V, VI, VII, and VIII.