PNP: Fewer media men killed in 2010

THE year 2010 have shown a significant improvement in the security situation for working journalists as fewer deaths were recorded by the authorities compared to 2009.

Records from Task Force Usig of the Philippine National Police (PNP) revealed that from that from January 1 to December 30, 2010, only three Filipino journalists were killed.

The PNP Task Force Usig is headed by Director Arturo Cacdac, the chief of the PNP’s Directorate for Investigative and Detective Management (DIDM).

The said figure is a significant decline from the 42 journalists who were killed in the same period for the year 2009.

At least 38 of the 42 journalists killed in 2009 were among the victims of the gruesome Maguindanao massacre were 57 persons were brutally killed in the worse political killings in Philippine history.

The yet to be submitted PNP’s Task Force Usig report seen by said that two of the three journalists killings in 2010 were said to be work related incident and the remaining one was due to personal matter.

Two of those killings took place during the first few weeks in the term of the newly elected President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III.

Aquino, whose father was a journalist and a senator jailed during martial law regime, said solving media and activist killings and addressing human rights issues is among the concern of his administration.

The report added that arrest had been made and that charges have already been filed against some of the suspects that were involved in the media killings.

Among the journalist killed in work-related incident in 2010 were Nestor Bedolido, 50, who was shot at close range by two motorcycle-riding gunmen while buying cigarette on a street in Digos City, Davao del Sur last June.

At the time of his death, Bedolido was working as a reporter for Kastigador, a weekly newspaper in Digos City, which is being bankrolled by a group of local politicians in the region, the report said.

Also on the same month, radio broadcaster Desidario Camangyan was shot dead by still unidentified gunman while he was hosting a local singing contest in Manay town in Davao Oriental.

A few days later, Joselito Agustin, a reporter for Sunshine radio FM in Laoag City, Ilocos Norte, was shot dead by still unidentified gunmen while he was riding his motorcycle on his way home from work.

Police investigators said both Bedolido and Agustin’s were known for their hard-hitting commentaries. Anthony Vargas

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