MANILA (Reuters) – Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr on Sunday strongly condemned the killing of a Filipino journalist and ordered police to launch an investigation to bring the perpetrators to justice.
Journalist Juan Jumalon, also known as “DJ Johnny Walker,” was shot dead by unknown assailants on Sunday morning while broadcasting from his home in a southern Philippines city, the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) said with an explanation. citing initial reports.
“Attacks on journalists will not be tolerated in our democracy, and those who threaten press freedom must face the full consequences of their actions,” Marcos said in a post on the X platform.
Media watchdog NUJP also condemned the “brazen murder” that was allegedly captured on a livestream of the Jumalon show. Jumalon’s home in Calamba, Misamis Occidental served as his radio station.
Jumalon’s killing brings the number of journalists killed since Marcos took office in June 2022 to four and to 199 since democracy was restored to the Philippines in 1986. That number included 32 killed in a single incident in 2009.
The Philippines has one of the most liberal media environments in Asia, but remains one of the most dangerous places in the world for journalists, particularly in its provinces.
It is the eighth worst country when it comes to prosecuting murderers of journalists, according to the Global Impunity Index 2023 released this week by the Committee to Protect Journalists.
(Reporting by Karen Lema; Editing by Michael Perry)