MANILA – A radio broadcaster was shot dead in Bongao, Tawi-Tawi last May 4, the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) said.
NUJP chairperson Rowena Paraan said 35-year-old Richard Nadjid was shot dead near his house in Bongao.
Nadjid, married and a father of five, was the station manager of DXNN Power Myx FM Station. He also handled the station's regular morning news and public affairs program.
Paraan criticized the local police for its treatment of the latest case of media-related killing in the country.
''While investigators say they have yet to establish the motive for the killing, it is disturbing that Tawi-Tawi provincial police director Senior Supt. Joselito Salido has immediately and baselessly dismissed the possibility of Nadjid's murder being work-related, calling the victim 'just one disc jockey, a person that plays popular music on FM radio station. He is not a journalist,''' Paraan said.
''That the chief of a province's police force can display not only insensitivity but, more alarming, ignorance reflects on the quality of what is supposed to be the country's main law enforcement agency and explains why media murders and human rights violations in general continue to be committed with impunity."
Babylyn Kano, a former colleague of Nadjid, said the victim is not known for dishing out hard-hitting political commentaries, even though Power Myx is owned by the Sahali family of Tawi-Tawi, a clan active in local politics.
Kano, however, noted that Nadjid acted as a witness in a drug bust operation by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) last month.
Nadjid is the second journalist to be killed in Tawi-Tawi. On June 25, 2007, Vicente Sumaplong, a radio broadcaster and production supervisor of Radyo ng Bayan, was shot dead. The mastermind in his killing remains at large.
Paraan said Nadjid is the 27th journalist killed under the administration of President Benigno Aquino III, ''the worst year-on-year record under any administration."
The NUJP has slammed President Aquino for giving a ''blanket insinuation that these murders were prodded by motives other than the victims' work."
Last week, at a joint news conference with visiting US President Barack Obama, Aquino was questioned by an American journalist on the issue of media-related killings in the Philippines.
Aquino defended his government's record on the killings by saying that "investigations are ongoing" in many of the cases.