PCOO exec: Ombudsman complaint is 'smear campaign'

Adrian Ayalin, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 14 2018 11:13 PM | Updated as of Jun 14 2018 11:28 PM

MANILA- Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Undersecretary Joel Egco blasted as a mere smear campaign the complaint filed against him by the DILG-Napolcom Press Club at the Ombudsman.

“This is clearly a smear campaign against me, intended to fend off the filing of appropriate charges against them,” said Egco in a statement.

Joel Amongo, DILG-Napolcom Press Club president, filed several charges against Egco on allegations that the latter is harassing their group.

Egco claimed that the complaint at the Ombudsman was a result of his move to inform Pilipino Mirror, the former employer of Amongo, of the latter's supposed illicit activities.

The DILG Press Corps (DPC) earlier issued a resolution saying its members have been receiving threats from another group of “fly-by-night” journalists who call themselves the “DILG-Napolcom Press Club,” whose members have established a foothold on and used the address of the DILG Media Center without prior approval from the agency.

According to the press group, the DILG-Napolcom Press Club was organized by Amongo immediately after refusing to recognize the results of the election of officers of the DPC last March.
Egco, who is also the executive director of the Presidential Task Force on Media Security, said they will conduct an investigation into the supposed harassment by Amongo's group of “legitimate media workers” who are members of the Department of the Interior and Local Government Press Club.

Egco also said that the Office of the Ombudsman is part of the task force he is heading.

“The Office of the Ombudsman is an observer in the task force and it knows how dedicated and relentless we are in pursuing our mandate to protect the life, liberty, and security of media workers. It is the criminal acts of these so-called 'fly-by-night media’, as alleged by the DILG Press Corps, that must not go unpunished,” Egco said.