CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY – President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. condemned the killing of a 57-year-old broadcaster who was shot dead while his program was being live-streamed in Calamba town, Misamis Occidental province on Sunday.
“I condemn in the strongest terms the murder of broadcaster Juan Jumalon,” the President said in his post on X (formerly Twitter).
Jumalon, also known as DJ Johnny Walker of Calamba Gold FM 94.7, was shot inside his home studio in Purok 2, Barangay Don Bernardo A. Neri around 5:35 a.m. on Sunday, while livestreaming the program “Pahapyod sa Kabuntangon.”
He was declared dead on arrival at Calamba District Hospital.
“I have instructed the PNP (Philippine National Police) to conduct a thorough investigation to swiftly bring the perpetrators to justice. Attacks on journalists will not be tolerated in our democracy, and those who threaten the freedom of the press will face the full consequences of their actions,” Marcos added.
As this developed, the Calamba Municipal Police Station (CMPS) in Misamis Occidental province said it is investigating the identity of the perpetrators who were caught in closed-circuit television (CCTV) footage.
Capt. Diore Ragionio, Officer-in-Charge of CMPS, said in an interview that witnesses have been invited to the Police Regional Office-10 (PRO-10) headquarters here to provide additional statements.
Police are now looking at four angles that led to the killing of Jumalon.
"We have considered all angles (in the motives of Jumalon's assassination) and we are gathering evidence so we can go which (angle) can lead to justice," he said.
The CCTV footage obtained by CMPS investigators showed two suspects entering Jumalon's residence.
The actual shooting was caught while his program was live on Facebook.
The gunman also grabbed what seemed like the victim’s necklace.
"We are now actively conducting a thorough investigation to identify the perpetrators of this crime and bring them to justice," PRO-10 Director, PBGen. Ricardo Layug Jr. said.
Media organizations condemned the attack against Jumalon, especially since the incident happened three days after the observance of the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes Against Journalists, an annual event recognized by the United Nations every Nov. 2.
Undersecretary Paul Gutierrez, Executive Director of the Presidential Task Force on Media Security, said the creation of a Special Investigation Task Group (SITG) is among the agreed protocols among the agencies within the group.
“Even as we extend our sympathy to the victim’s family and friends over this dastardly attack, we also call on the Misamis Occidental Police Office to immediately constitute its SITG to investigate this incident and apprehend the suspect and others possibly involved in the interest of justice,” he said in a statement.
The Mindanao Independent Press Council Inc. and the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines also condemned the killing.
Dr. Manuel Jaudian, former president and Board ex-officio member of the Cagayan de Oro Press Club (COPC), urged fellow members of the press to stay vigilant.
"Always we keep watch from the forces of darkness who are no longer afraid that even in the broad daylight, wherever you are, they will kill to silence our messaging for the truth," he said.
Misamis Occidental Gov. Henry Oaminal also said he was "shocked and I am in grief, as I denounce in the strongest terms, the untimely death" of Jumalon.
"Having known this man as a fearless broadcaster, I share the grief of his family and the people of my province for we lost a truth crusade," he said.
Oaminal also asked Layug to investigate the Jumalon case and all other cases like the Oct. 15 improvised device explosion in Clarin which hit his convoy; the Oct. 23 shooting of Calamba Municipal engineer Jopson Baones; and Oct. 28 grenade-throwing incident at the house of Calamba Mayor Villanueva.
Other media harassments
In a separate incident, the COPC also expressed concern about the "doxxing" incident perpetrated by a fictitious Facebook account against its member, Menzie Montes, and vice president for print, Cong Corrales.
Montes, a broadcaster at DXCC iFM radio, and Corrales, Mindanao Gold Star Daily editor-in-chief, had their documents containing their addresses and names of their family members exposed by the fictitious Facebook user.
The documents exposed were information sheets from the City Housing and Urban Development Department (CHUDD) of the local government here.
"We urged CHUDD and the City Hall under the leadership of Mayor Rolando Uy, to cooperate with us in identifying this Facebook user so that charges will be filed," read a COPC statement.
"Doxxing" is a practice where anonymous groups or individuals, post documents of victims that contain private, personal, and sensitive information to the public via online platforms.
BenCyrus Ellorin, Uy’s political spokesperson, said the city government is investigating the incident. (PNA)