The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) Zamboanga-Sulu-Tawi-Tawi condemns the latest killing of a community-based journalist in Bongao, Tawi-tawi just a day after the observance of World Press Freedom.
Richard Nadjid, 35, married and a father of five, was gunned down the night of May 4, 2014 near his home in Bongao.
While investigators say they have yet to establish the motive for the killing, it is disturbing that Tawi-Tawi provincial police director Senior Supt. Joselito Salido has immediately and baselessly dismissed the possibility of Nadjid’s murder being work-related, calling the victim “just one disc jockey, a person that plays popular music on FM radio station. He is not a journalist.”
That the chief of a province’s police force can display not only insensitivity but, more alarming, ignorance reflects on the quality of what is supposed to be the country’s main law enforcement agency and explains why media murders and human rights violations in general continue to be committed with impunity.
For Salido’s enlightenment, Nadjid was not only the station manager of DxNN Power Myx FM station in Bongao, he also handled the station’s regular morning news and public affairs program.
But Salido’s cop-out on Nadjid’s murder is not surprising given how his commander-in-chief, President Benigno Aquino III, himself set the tone by dismissing media killings with the blanket insinuation that these murders were prodded by motives other than the victims’ work.
Nadjid is the second member of Tawi-Tawi’s fourth estate killed and the 27th under Aquino, the worst year-on-year record under any administration.
On June 25, 2007, radio broadcaster Vicente Sumalpong, production supervisor of Radyo ng Bayan, was gunned down. As with ALL media killings in this country, the mastermind remains at large.
Rowena C. Paraan
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