Radio manâ€™s murder seen warning for logging foes
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 23:59:00 06/17/2010http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/inquirerheadlines/regions/view/20100617-276176/Radio-mans-murder-seen-warning-for-logging-foes
DAVAO CITYâ€”THE DEATH OF ANTILOGGING broadcaster Desidario Camangyan on Tuesday could be a warning for environment activists in Davao Oriental.
Sr. Stella Matutina said activists were now uncertain about their safety because even the 52-year-old Camangyan, who was perceived to have wielded some sort of influence, was attacked and killed by suspected illegal loggers.
Camangyan, a staunch antilogging advocate that worked for Sunrise FM in Mati City, was gunned down while hosting a singing contest in Mabini, Davao Oriental.
Matutina said Camangyanâ€™s death worried environmentalists and made them think whether or not to continue with their effort to stop illegal logging and mining activities in the province.
â€œWe now worry about our safety,â€ she said by phone.
Matutina also said other environmental activists like her had been receiving threats even prior to Camangyanâ€™s death.
But Matutina admitted that if they will be cowed by the attack on Camangyan, illegal loggers and miners would flourish.
Supt. Querubin Manalang, police spokesperson for Southern Mindanao, said investigators have yet to establish the motive and the identity of the suspect in the killing of the broadcaster.
He said the police were not only looking at illegal mining and logging, but also alleged illegal activities of politicians, who came under fire from Camangyan.
Matutina urged authorities to step up their efforts to solve Camangyanâ€™s murder and put the perpetrators behind bars.
â€œWe denounce this killing,â€ she said.
The recent killings of two radio journalists, both within the span of less than 24 hours, in the country has again sparked international outrage directed at the outgoing administration of President Macapagal-Arroyo.
In a statement posted at its website, the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) said Ms Arroyo must be held accountable for the twin killings. The group also said President-elect Benigno Aquino III must act quickly to stop the killings.
â€œThese killings, barely half a month before President-elect Noynoy Aquino takes office, show that enemies of press freedom in the Philippines are confident they can continue to get away with murder,â€ IFJ Asia Pacific director Jacqueline Park said.
She also said Aquino must, once he is Chief Executive, compel law enforcers and justice officials to take â€œall necessary action to end the killings of media workers, and to see justice prevail against the perpetrators of these vicious crimes.â€
â€œAnd Gloria Arroyo must be held accountable for her failure to act on more than 100 killings of media workers during her presidency. As a congresswoman in the new Congress, she remains at the forefront of our attention to seeing that justice is done.â€
On Tuesday, unidentified motorcycle-riding men shot Joselito Agustin of dzJC Aksyon Radyo at the boundary of Laoag City and Bacarra town in Ilocos Norte. He died early the next day. Dennis Jay Santos, Inquirer Mindanao and Alcuin Papa in Manila