Statement of CHR Spokesperson, Atty. Jacqueline de Guia, on the killing of a radio broadcaster in Dumaguete City

Statement of CHR Spokesperson, Atty. Jacqueline de Guia, on the killing of a radio broadcaster in Dumaguete City

A radio broadcaster was murdered yesterday, 5 May 2020, on the same day that a media giant was shut down and only 3 days after World Press Freedom Day. On his way home, Rex Cornelio, a news reporter and announcer in DYMD Energy 93.7 FM was shot in Barangay Daro, Dumaguete City. He is the third radio broadcaster to be killed in Dumaguete since 2018 and the latest casualty in the unrelenting trend of attack and harassment against members of the press.

Around 154 media attacks and assaults have been recorded in our country from June 2016 to December 2019. These violence and similar attacks to journalists signify an erosion of free press and undermining of democracy. We cannot stress enough our strong condemnation to these violence and harassments that send a chilling effect and cultivate a culture of fear and silence among media workers. Journalists deserve utmost protection for they fuel our democracy. Without the information, education, and truth-probing enabled a by a free press, other freedoms we enjoy may be in peril.

A swift investigation should be done to ensure that perpetrators are held to account. For our part, the CHR-Region VII will investigate and monitor the resolution of the case to its just end. To ensure long-term protection for members of the press, we reiterate our call to the government to establish safeguards to prevent further media attacks. ###