BAGUIO CITY – The Presidential Task Force on Media Security (PTFoMS) and the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) condemned the killing of veteran broadcaster Percival Mabasa,
more popularly known as “Percy Lapid”, who was reportedly shot to death by still unidentified gunmen riding a motorcycle along Aria St., Sta. Cecilia Village, Talon Dos, Las Piñas City Monday night.

We at the Presidential Task Force denounce the murder of Percy Lapid and send our deepest condolences
to the family, friends and colleagues of the victim, PTFoMS said, vowing “rest assured that the PTFOMS will not rest until the perpetrators of this heinous crime are brought to justice. There is absolutely no justification for murder.”

Based on the initial report submitted by Col. Jaime O Santos, Las Piñas City Police chief, the victim, while driving along Aria St. on board his black Toyota Innova at around 8:30 pm, was shot by two male suspects on board a motorcycle without plate number, “causing his instantaneous death.” The vehicle of the victim then crashed at the gate of BF Resort Village.

The NUJP blurted out, “the killing shows that journalism remains a dangerous profession in the country,” citing that the incident taking place in Metro Manila “indicates how brazen the perpetrators were, and how
authorities have failed to protect journalists as well as ordinary citizens from harm.” Lapid, host of “Lapid Fire” on DWBL 1242, according to the NUJP, had been critical of the Duterte administration as well as
some personalities in and policies of the Marcos administration.

Among his most recent commentaries on his YouTube channel, the group cited, was on the dangers of red tagging, particularly the most recent harassment of Manila Judge Marlo Magdoza-Malagar. He had also commented on the security risks of Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators and on historical distortion of
Martial Law.

The PTFOMS vowed it has been in close coordination with law enforcement agencies, particularly the PNP and the Media Security Vanguards in the investigation of the incident. “While it is still too early to establish the exact motive behind the incident, the PTFOMS will presume the killing to be “work related” as a
matter of procedure so that the full might of the Presidential task force will be brought to bear against the perpetrators.”

Media Security Vanguards are PTFoMS Focal Persons composed of PNP’s Public Information Officers (PIO) and serve as the “first line of defense” of journalists all over the country as they will be the
first to receive and respond to all threats leveled against any media worker. Through the efforts of PTFOMS, all PIOs nationwide were officially designated as Focal Persons last January of this year, with
PIO head PBGen Roderick Augustus Alba as Chief Vanguard.

According to the NUJP, Mabasa is the second journalist to be killed under Marcos Jr. administration after radio broadcaster Rey Blanco was stabbed dead in Mabinay, Negros Oriental last September 18, 2022.

Artemio A. Dumlao/ABN

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