MANILA – The Presidential Task Force on Media Security (PTFoMS) on Wednesday decried the killing of a former radio commentator running for councilor in Tacurong City, Sultan Kudarat by motorcycle “riding-in-tandem” gunmen.
“The government condemns in the strongest possible terms the killing of Jaynard Angeles, a candidate in the local election and former station manager of Radyo ni Juan. We will never tolerate any act of violence against any person,” Undersecretary Jose Joel Sy Egco, executive director of PTFoMS, said in a statement.
“We condole with the family, loved ones, and colleagues of Mr. Angeles. The PTFoMS is now in close coordination with the Philippine National Police (PNP) in conducting intensive police operations to pursue his assailants and bring the perpetrators before the bar of justice,” he added.
The initial report submitted by the PNP to the Task Force showed that Angeles was shot and killed at an auto repair shop in Purok Sampaguita, Brgy. New Carmen, Tacurong City at about 10 a.m. on Wednesday.
Investigation revealed that two gunmen approached Angeles and shot him in the head which caused his death. He was 36 years old.
The suspects fled the scene onboard a black Kawasaki Bajaj motorcycle.
Before the incident, Angeles had resigned from Radyo ni Juan to run for councilor in his hometown of Lambayong.
“Even if Mr. Angeles is a former media practitioner, the Task Force will not stop until the masterminds and their cohorts are caught, charged, and convicted for this heinous crime. There is no justification for murder, whatever Angeles may have been involved with in the past,” Egco said.
The incident occurred after the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) recently directed the PNP to designate Media Security Focal Persons in each province and city nationwide upon the request of PTFoMS, citing the increasing incidents of violence against journalists before, during, and after the elections.
PTFoMS’ request was expeditiously and favorably acted upon by the DILG in anticipation of a possible increase in violent incidents involving media workers during the election season.
Egco said as the election draws near, the focal persons will serve as the “first line of defense” of journalists even in the most far-flung areas of the country as they will be the first to receive and respond to all threats leveled against any media worker.
He said the focal persons will also coordinate directly with the assigned PTFoMS Special Agents (SAs) in expediting the resolution of cases of violence against journalists.
“We took the initiative to request for high ranking PNP officers as focal persons because we could foresee what will be necessary for the future in terms of safety and security for members of the 4th Estate as mandated by President Rodrigo Duterte in his Administrative Order No. 1 (AO1),” Egco said. (PR)