MANILA - Malacañang on Friday condemned the latest incident of media killing in the country.
"We condemn the killing of radio broadcaster Sammy Oliverio in Digos City, Davao del Sur this morning, 23 May. We note that Mr. Oliverio was a block-timer airing programs in behalf of the local government unit over Radyo Ukay and other radio stations in Digos City," Communications Secretary Sonny Coloma said.
"The PNP (Philippine National Police) has been directed to exert maximum efforts to track the assailants and bring them before the bar of justice," Coloma added.
Senator Grace Poe also wants justice for Oliverio.
"This mocks our efforts to elevate press freedom in the country and protect our journalists who fearlessly pursue our good," she said.
Meanwhile, the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) expressed disappointment over the government's alleged failure to protect its own citizens.
"We can almost predict what comes next: police setting up another of those useless task forces that have so far failed to nail any of the masterminds in the 163 media murders before Oliverio's, and the government vowing to bring his case to 'justice' just as it has failed to do with all the other cases," it said.
"It would not be farfetched, either, to expect that, somewhere down the road, some government flunky, or even President Benigno Aquino III himself, will be repeating the immortal words he uttered during US President Barack Obama's visit, that the victim was killed 'not because of professional activities, but, shall we say, other issues.' As if anything justified murder," it added.
Police said Oliverio was on his way home from the market with his wife when motorcycle-riding suspects shot him twice in the head. -- With report from RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News