Tuesday, November 14, 2006

On the latest media assaults

To understand the appeal of the Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility (CMFR) calling for the stopping of the assault on press freedom by the Arroyo regime, here are the alerts CMFR prepared on the latest assaults on press freedom by the administration:

Police tries to arrest reporter

AN ARREST warrant for a business reporter, one of the 43 journalists sued by the husband of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, Jose Miguel Arroyo, was served by at least six policemen right inside the MalacaƱang Palace compound last 13 November.

Five Manila Police District policemen entered the press working area of the MalacaƱang Press Corps and sought Mia Gonzalez, reporter of the national business daily, the BusinessMirror, shortly before 11 a.m. Gonzalez was, however, not arrested because she was on leave.

Asked why they were looking for her, the policemen said their purpose was “confidential.” One reporter then checked the area’s logbook, and found out that the police were going to serve an arrest warrant.

Gonzalez, who has been covering the presidential beat since the Ramos administration, said that no notice about the court order was received by herself, her lawyer or even the staff of Newsbreak magazine, the publication to which she is a contributor.

“We’re surprised that an arrest warrant was about to be served on Mia Gonzalez, our contributor. We, including our counsel, have not received a copy of the resolution from the court. We deplore the short cut in the legal process, a clear abuse of power,” Marites Vitug, editor in chief of Newsbreak, said.

Read more here.

Newspaper columnist receives death threat

A newspaper columnist who has been charged with libel by the husband of Philippine President Gloria Arroyo received a death threat through the e-mail on 12 November.

Ellen Tordesillas, columnist and chief of reporters of the daily newspaper Malaya, found the threatening message on her e-mail at around 3 p.m. shortly after sending her column. The message, coming from the address danie11aperez80@yahoo.com, was time-stamped 7:21 a.m. of the same day.

The letter said: “What kind of death do you prefer? To die of cancer? To die of accident? To die of ambush? To die of heart attack due to your libel suit? Masyado kang matapang ha? Puro banat mo sa Pangulo dahil hindi ka napartehan ng gracia kahit kaunti. (You’re very brave, aren’t you? You keep criticizing the President just because you did not even get to have a tiny share of the blessings.) Your days are numbered.”

Read the rest of the alert here.

No comments:

Blog directory