MANILA (Reuters) – Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr on Sunday strongly condemned the killing of a Filipino journalist and ordered the police to conduct an investigation to bring the perpetrators to justice.
The journalist, Juan Jumalon, also known as “DJ Johnny Walker”, was shot by unidentified assailants while broadcasting from his home in a southern Philippine town on Sunday morning, the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) said in a statement, citing initial reports.
“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 said in a post on X platform.
Media watchdog NUJP also condemned the “brazen killing” which it said was caught on a livestream of Jumalon’s show. Jumalon’s home in Calamba, Misamis Occidental served as his radio station.
Jumalon’s killing brings to four the number of journalists killed since Marcos took office in June 2022, and to 199 since democracy was restored in the Philippines in 1986. That figure included 32 killed in a single incident in 2009.
The Philippines has one of Asia’s most liberal media environments, but it remains one of the world’s most dangerous places for journalists, particularly in its provinces.
It ranked as the eighth worst country when it comes to prosecuting killers of journalists, according to 2023 Global Impunity Index released by the Committee to Protect Journalists released this week.
(Reporting by Karen Lema; Editing by Michael Perry)