freedom of the press

02/25/06 at 9:11 am | Posted in INQUIRER.net | Leave a comment

This is how the Arroyo administration is defending democracy:

1017: Veiled warning to some segments of media?

"We're entering a period of censorship and intimidation never before seen since the 1970s and the 1980s," said Manuel L. Quezon III, a columnist of the Inquirer.

He was quoted saying this in the article Media fear censorship, intimidation.

So, are we journalists just being paranoid? Gee, maybe Tribune publisher Niñez Cacho-Olivarez is only being paranoid:

Cops enter Tribune office, get copies of mock-up issue

Inquirer columnist and UP professor Randy David, who led one of the rallies yesterday, was detained by cops and later released:

"We have so many ironies today, not least of which is the fact that in January 2001, we were on the same march on Edsa, and she (Ms Arroyo) was at the Edsa Shrine, waiting for us to give her the presidency. And now she's stopping us," said University of the Philippines professor and Inquirer columnist Randy David shortly before he was arrested by policemen in plainclothes.

David, along with Akbayan president Ronald Llamas and lawyer Argee Guevarra, was taken in a green Toyota Corolla sedan (plate number WJU-141) to Camp Karingal, according to Akbayan media officer Percy Sendaña.

The three were charged with illegal assembly and inciting to sedition, but were released early last night.

Not to worry, however, said National Telecommunications Commission chief Ronald Solis, who met with representatives of broadcast media yesterday after the proclamation of the state of emergency to ask for "balanced reporting."

Solis spoke to the Inquirer before meeting with representatives of various broadcast media.

He said fears of a government crackdown on the media were unfounded and described as "OA [overacting]" suspicions of eventual curtailment of press freedom.

He said circulars had already been distributed to broadcast media organizations in the past outlining what they could and could not do during periods of emergency.

Ay sori, sir, OA lang po pala kami.

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