By Erwin M. Mascariñas
Journalists from different parts of the country marched and staged a Black Friday protest against the recent murder of publisher and columnist Dennis Denora and renewed calling an end to the killings at the Boy Scouts Circle in Quezon City, last Friday evening.
“We are here to condemn the recent killing, which is the 11th journalist killed under the Duterte administration. We hope that this would be the last; with what is happening right now with the pillars of our democracy and the check and balances that were supposed to be established to form our democratic institutions are being attacked points out to a more bigger challenge as media practitioners,” said lawyer Jo Clemente, acting chair of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP).
For her part, Kath Cortez, NUJP Davao City chapter secretary general, said the latest media killing shows that Mindanao media does not fall far from the situation from other media practitioners across the country.
“This Black Friday protest that is launched by NUJP is an opportunity for us especially those from Mindanao journalist to share our situation, we right now are facing several issues such as martial law where in our access for information has been limited, where the information now is being spoon-fed by the government and based only on their interest and what they want to give out the public,” Cortez said.
Marchel Espina, NUJP Bacolod chapter chair, called on national government to end its hostility against media because the problem with the current administration is it does not take kindly to dissent or criticism.
Dennis Denora, publisher, and columnist of the community paper Trends and Times and an officer of the Davao Region Multi-media Group, was shot dead by still unidentified killers near the wet market of Panabo City, Davao del Norte.
Denora is the 11th journalist killed in the less than two years since President Rodrigo Duterte assumed office and the 184th since 1986.