Originally published on the Facebook page of NUJP on 1 May 2018.
The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines condemns the murder of our former Dumaguete City chapter chairman, Edmund Sestoso, host of the program “Tug-anan” on dyGB Power 91, who died Tuesday afternoon, May 1, of injuries he sustained when he was shot by two motorcycle-riding gunmen the day before.
Edmund is the ninth journalist to be murdered under the presidency of Rodrigo R. Duterte and the 182nd since 1986.
The brazenness of the attack on Edmund and that it happened only three days before we commemorate World Press Freedom Day underscores how deeply the culture of impunity has rooted itself in our country, emboldening those who wish to silence not only the press but to control civic discourse in general by stamping out critical and dissenting voices.
We demand justice for Edmund and for all silenced voices.
We demand that government fulfill its obligation to protect the citizenry, uphold all basic democratic rights and stop vilifying those who freely express themselves.
Nevertheless, we are certain that independent Philippine journalists will not be cowed, not by threats nor attacks, and will continue to serve the people’s right to know even as we advance the struggle for a truly free press.