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Journos' security concerns take spotlight at DILG, PNP, media dialogue

Journalists' security concerns were the main topic of the conference attended by representatives from the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Philippine National Police (PNP), and members of the media on Saturday, an event that stemmed from the surprise visits of police officers to the private residences of several journalists last week.

According to Luisito Santos’ report on Super Radyo dzBB, DILG Secretary Benhur Abalos called for a dialogue with the media at the Camp Crame in Quezon City.

PNP Public Information Office chief Police Colonel Red Maranan said the dialogue was being held to tackle the concerns of the members of the media regarding their security.

Likewise, the dialogue also aims to shed light on the visits by police officers of the Eastern Police District at the private residences of several journalists in Marikina City last week.

In a tweet last Saturday, GMA reporter JP Soriano recounted his experience after a self-identified policeman came to his private residence to check if he had received any threats following the killing of broadcaster Percy Lapid.

Soriano said the policeman politely introduced himself, and explained that he was ordered by the PNP to check if journalists were being threatened.

The National Capital Region Police Office has since ordered a halt to the visits

Personalities and groups attending the dialogue include PNP officer-in-charge Police Lieutenant General Rhodel Sermonia, officials of the National Press Club, Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas, and the Presidential Task Force on Media Security.

Marcos commits to protecting journalists

President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. expressed his commitment to ensure the safety of journalists in the country, Office of the Press Secretary officer-in-charge Cheloy Garafil said on Saturday.

She said that the journalists’ welfare is of "utmost concern to the government."

Garafil, who also attended the meeting, added that the President is fully aware of the "vital role" of journalists in nation-building.

“Patuloy ang commitment niya na kayo ay proteksyonan at kilalanin ang inyong important role sa nation-building,” she said.

(He remains committed to protecting you and recognizes the important role you play in nation-building.) —LBG/VBL, GMA News