Sun, 24 Mar 2019

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, November 6 (PIA) - Presidential Task Force on Media Security (PTFoMS) Undersecretary Joel Sy Egco warns media to be very careful during election period as this season could spikes violent incidence involving media.

Egco, in a seminar on the implementation of Administrative Order 1 Operational Guidelines and introduction of the PTFoMS protocols held in Cagayan de Oro City, shared his team has been going around the country to explain directly to the grassroots, to the stakeholders, to the member agencies and the media partners in the local level, the provisions of Administrative Order 1, the very first administrative order signed by the President on October 2016.

"It aims to protect the lives, security and liberty of media workers all over the Philippines," he said.

Included in the seminar were members of Philippine National Police (PNP), Department of Justice (DOJ) and National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and members of the media.

"Our intention is to prevent deaths, prevent murders of media workers in the Philippines. This does not involve journalists but everyone involved in gathering the news," he added.

As to the credibility of the task force, Egco explained, "This is not just any spineless creation; We bite."

"Impunity is there when in case somebody dies, you just turn your back on the victim. Before somebody dies, we monitor. We act on the threat immediately to prevent death," he said.

Mindanao accounts for the highest number of journalist deaths and media killings since 1986. Egco said, 32 deaths in Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) alone. Meanwhile, other regions had 15, 13, and 9 but majority come from Mindanao.

PTFoMS, after the seminar, also released the handbook for security measures for media workers in time for election season.

"Study and learn and follow the protocols contained in that handbook. That will definitely save your lives," Egco said.

"No. 1 predictability is your worst enemy," he said.

"Even social media, limit your exposure especially when you think that you are under threat," he said.

"Lastly, if ever you feel threatened, whenever you face danger, you call us and definitely we will be there. We have quick reaction team, protocols to save lives of our friends in the media," he said. (JMOR/PIA10)

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