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CHR to investigate online threats against TV5’s journalist, host

By John Patrick Magno Ranara Published Oct 13, 2022 11:25 am

The Commission of Human Rights (CHR) has issued an official statement promising to investigate the veracity of online threats made against TV5 network broadcasters Ed Lingao and Lourd de Veyra and urged the government to likewise address the problem.

This comes after Lingao published a post on his Facebook account showing a tweet made by a certain Twitter user, who claimed that Lingao and de Veyra were the next targets to be "taken down".

"This was tweeted by this character just a day after Percy Lapid was shot dead. Balita raw niya, kami ni Lourd ang susunod," Lingao wrote. 

Lapid passed away on Oct. 5 after being shot twice by two unidentified suspects while he was inside his vehicle near a subdivision’s gate in Las Piñas City. Many journalists were shocked over his death and took to social media to express outrage and call for justice over his murder.

Following the threat of assassination against the two media personalities, CHR stressed that they remain firm in their stance to protect all journalists in the country.

"We do not and cannot take lightly any threats or any allusions to harm the lives of journalists, regardless if such statements are deliberate or cursory," CHR stated.

In addressing the issue, CHR said, "We shall endeavor to reach out to the involved and explore preventive measures, through our Investigation Office, and offer assistance as well as a quick response mechanism that will look into the veracity of threats, among others."

Stressing the importance of the press in maintaining democracy, the independent human rights institution called on the government to focus on addressing these violations and take proactive measures to stop media attacks.

"We look forward to their efforts to look into this matter and similar cases of media rights violations committed in the country. CHR hopes for genuine justice and the end of impunity," the institution stated.

According to data gathered by the Committee to Protect Journalists, an organization that promotes press freedom worldwide, there have been a total of 155 journalists and media workers killed in Philippines between 1992 and 2022, including Lapid.