NUJP decries 'red-tagging' by 3 local tabloids

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 08 2019 04:08 PM

MANILA - The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) denounced reports published by three local tabloids, linking them to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), the New People’s Army (NPA), and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP).

Local tabloids Police Files Tonite, Bagong Bomba and Saksi Mata ng Katotohanan all published the same banner stories on January 7, using the headline “NUJP Pinamumunuan ng CPP-NPA-NDF” (NUJP headed by CPP-NPA-NDF ).

All three reports claimed their information came from a certain "Ka Ernesto," who claimed to be a former NUJP member and said the organization has links to CPP founder Jose Maria Sison.

According to NUJP, this was an "orchestrated government attack through unscrupulous elements in the media intended to silence journalists."

The group added this is the second time members of the group have been "red-tagged," as some stories published on December 26, the 50th anniversary of the CPP, accused NUJP of being the "legal front" of the CPP-NPA-NDFP.

"It is hilarious that they keep repeating these charges since the NUJP’s membership represents a broad spectrum of creeds and political beliefs bound by a common dedication to defending and expanding the bounds of freedom of the press and of expression," NUJP said in a statement.

NUJP said it initially wanted to ignore these claims, but such accounts exposes members to potential danger "from those who might readily believe this canard."

"With at least 12 colleagues slain under the watch of a president who has actually justified the murder of journalists--remember 'Just because you're a journalist you are not exempted from assassination, if you're a son of a bitch?'--and openly and constantly curses and threatens media, we are taking this matter very, very seriously," NUJP said.

The group said it is consulting legal experts for possible actions to take against those who spread false information against it.

"We do serve fair warning though to those behind this campaign: We will hound you and make sure you pay should any harm that may befall our members and other colleagues because of your craven machinations," NUJP said.

"To this end we are consulting legal experts on possible actions to take," it added.