By ELAINE O. RATUNIL
CAGAYAN de Oro City––“Be professional, conveyors of truth,” was the appeal of Justice Secretary Raul M. Gonzalez in a recent press conference held during the 21st National Prosecutors League of the Philippines (NPLP) in Xavier Estates and Country Club, Cagayan de Oro City.
The statement was made after the Secretary was made to comment on the growing number of media practitioners being killed.
Gonzalez said: “We are not happy about that [incident] but we should classify why a media personality was killed.”
He said that other media resort to something which should not be done.
Further, he said that at times we lump together data on the number of media being killed without identifying what are the causes of the killings.
He cited a case in Iloilo City in which there were two media personalities killed but the incident is related to their relationship to women.
“What I want is let us be more circumspect…Let us report them properly because that is not also good for us,” said Gonzalez.
He said that the media tend to exaggerate and sensationalize stories.
Hence, he reiterated that the mission of the press is to speak the truth.
“That is why we are appealing also to the press not to over sensationalize stories. It would hurt not only individuals but also the country,” Gonzalez said.
Meanwhile, Gonzalez congratulated the media.
He said that the local media are vigilant in protecting their profession. That is why, he said, we are appealing to the press not to sensationalize stories.
The Arroyo administration has been widely criticized for its record of having the most number of media persons killed during its watch.
President Arroyo has created Task Force Usig to look into the cases of the killing of media personalities. A report from the Philippine Information Agency