MPC: Rappler reporter stays in Palace press corps until CA ruling

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 21 2018 11:45 AM | Updated as of Feb 21 2018 12:24 PM

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MANILA - A Rappler reporter who was barred from entering Malacañang upon orders of President Rodrigo Duterte will continue to be a member of the Malacañang Press Corps, the group's president said Wednesday.

MPC President Raymond Tinaza said Pia Ranada will remain a member of the journalists' circle unless there is a "final ruling" from the Court of Appeals on Rappler's appeal to overturn the decision of the Securities and Exchange Commission.

"Ang Malacañang Press Corps ay isang independent media organization...Itong membership sa Malacañang Press Corps, kumbaga, MPC reserved the right to accredit its own members. Hindi ito pinapasyahan ng Malacañang," he told radio DZMM.

"Hindi sila nakikialam at hindi sila dapat makialam doon sa pag-accredit ng ating mga miyembro," he said.

The SEC revoked Rappler's business papers over supposed violation of foreign ownership laws but said the online news site may continue with its operations.

Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea said Ranada or any of her colleagues cannot cover events at the presidential palace until the news site resolves its issue with the SEC.

Ranada was allowed inside the New Executive Building on Tuesday after being stopped briefly at the gate. The NEB houses the working area for reporters covering the President.

Tinaza said a general assembly of all MPC members is scheduled on Tuesday to gather consensus on whether or not they will issue a statement on Ranada's plight or what other steps they will take.

He said they are hoping to sit down with Communications Secretary Martin Andanar to find out "in black and white" the reason why Ranada was barred from entering the Palace and its scope.