By Baretang Bikolnon Staff
The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines and other fellow journalists condemn the brazen murder of Davao-based journalist Dennis Denora who was shot dead by still unidentified riding-in-tandem killers near the wet market of Panabo City, Davao del Norte.
Denora, publisher and columnist of the community paper Trends and Times and an officer of the Davao Region Multi-media Group, is the 11th journalist killed in the less than two years since President Rodrigo Duterte assumed office and the 184th since 1986.
According to Davao del Norte Police Provincial Office, Denora was shot around 2 p.m. on board his vehicle and sustained multiple gunshot wounds in the head while his driver sustained two gunshot wounds in his right hand.
“While there is still no official word on the possible motive for his murder, it was likely related to his work as a journalist. Denora’s colleagues in the province acknowledge that he was “fearless” in his commentaries in broadcast and print,” said NUJP in a statement.
“This is a tragic reminder of the physical risks journalists take as they work in the field. As a newspaper publisher like myself, I am disheartened by the death of one of the well-known columnists in Davao del Norte,” said Pamela Gay B. Perales, president of Davao del Norte Press & Radio-TV Club (DNPRC).
Denora is known for his fearless forecasts both in newspaper and in radio did have the highs and lows of the profession according to DNPRC condemning the said murder.
“We at DNPRC, believe it is not justifiable to take one’s life for personal or political reasons. His death awakens the anger and pains of journalists who do their job and yet are being judged by the pistol,” Perales said in their statement.
According to NUJP, this latest media killing belies Malacañang’s claim that the Philippines has improved its position among the deadliest countries in the world to be a journalist, a fact international press freedom watchdog Reporters Sans Frontieres already established early on when it reported that we had slipped six notches – from 127th to 133rd of 180 countries ranked – in its 2018 World Press Freedom Index.
“It also highlights what we and allied media organizations noted on World Press Freedom Day early this month, that journalism has become an even more dangerous endeavor under Duterte, who has himself spearheaded the vilification of the press because he cannot abide criticism,” NUJP stated. (BaretangBikolnon.com/Photo from Octavio Valle)