CAMP BAGONG DIWA — The Philippine National Police has released a computerized facial composite sketch of one of the suspects in the shooting of radio broadcaster Juan Jumalon alyas Johnny Walker in Calamba, Misamis Occidental.
The PNP said the suspect served as a lookout for the gunman.
“May sinasabing based on the available CCTVs, based on the review, lumalabas dalawa but ayoko na 'yun na 'yun kasi ongoing pa 'yung pagcoconsolidate ng mga facts,” PNP Chief Police General Benjamin Acorda said in a press briefing in Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig.
The Deputy Regional Director of Police Regional Office 10 will supervise the Special Investigation Task Group on the Jumalon case, he said.
The Calamba Municipal Police Station earlier said Jumalon was doing a live broadcast on radio station 94.7 Calamba Gold FM in his residence at Barangay Don Bernardo A. Neri when an unidentified gunman shot him in the head.
The suspect "entered inside the gate of the house of the victim," based on the report.
"The suspect fled away to unknown direction," it added.
The PNP chief said he was shocked by the brazenness of the killing.
“Yeah I was shocked the way it was done is very blatant and talagang... you can see that those who perpetrate it, there is no remorse. Talagang parang manok na lang. Kumbaga pangit tignan eh. Lawlessness talaga,” Acorda said.
“May (sketch na ng suspek). They (SITG) were able to review all the CCTVs. May mga nakuha tayong mga escape vehicles. May mga nabanggit na mga motibo for the sake of the conduct of the investigation we don’t want speculation kasi baka ma pre-empt 'yung investigation. May mga anggulong sinusundan but I am not at liberty to divulge the motivation o theory na sinusundan natin. 'Yung isang anggulo konektado sa trabaho, 'yung isa medyo personal.“ he added.
Authorities are validating information that Jumalon was heard mentioning names of barangay captains before the killing.
The special task group is coordinating with Jumalon's family.
“Yung ating Regional Director are coordinating now with the family. Nagusap na sila pagdating sa taking into custody ng cellphone (and) also other aspects. If there is a need (for security) we are willing to provide," Acorda said.
He also encouraged members of the media who are receiving threats to inform the police.
"With regards to the safety and security of our media practitioners that is also one of our kumbaga concern. Under my leadership, talagang 'yan ang isang tinututukan natin and ang gusto ko lang open 'yung communication natin with the media para kung may nararamdaman let us talk, sit down and how we can arrange for the safety and security para 'yung paglalabas ng mga katotohanan at katiwalian ay tuloy tuloy," he said.
For his part, Undersecretary Paul Gutierrez said the Presidential Task Force on Media Security is looking at several angles in the Jumalon killing.
In an interview, Gutierrez said one angle being eyed is that the Jumalon killing was not related to his work as a journalist.
"Lumiliit na work related ito. 'Yung initial assessment ng mga imbestigador kasi hindi naman siya hard hitting o bastos na bumatikos sa kanyang programa," he said in a TeleRadyo Serbisypo interview.
"Isa pang anggulo, meron pala itong land dispute sa lugar na 'yan at ito’y nakarating pa sa korte. Meron din anggulong tinitingnan sa katatapos na [barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections]."
He said the task force is reviewing Jumalon's previous broadcasts for more information. The Jumalon family has also been granted security.
Gutierrez said the Philippines' ranking in the Global Impunity Index has improved under the Marcos administration.
WIFE WANTS JUSTICE
Meanwhile, the wife of the slain broadcaster urged authorities to find her husband's killer.
"I seek justice for the death of my husband Johnny Walker pero pinapaubaya ko na sa Panginoon at sa mga otoridad. Nagpapasalamat din po ako kay President Marcos sa kanyang tulong para mapabilis ang paglutas ng kaso," Cherebel Jumalon said.
Speaker Martin Romualdez and the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption issued separate statements condemning the murder.
"The freedom of the press is a cornerstone of our democracy. Every journalist deserves the right to exercise their profession without fearing for their safety or their lives. Any attack or violence against members of the media is unacceptable and deeply troubling. We must ensure that those responsible for these heinous acts are brought to justice," Romualdez said.
He added: "To Filipino journalists: Your voices matter. Your stories matter. We stand with you and will continue to advocate for your safety and the right to perform your duties without intimidation or harm. Together, we will strive to put an end to these senseless acts of violence and uphold the sanctity of free expression in the Philippines."
The VACC, meanwhile, said: "Assault on media personalities should not be tolerated in our country , and those who intend to destroy free press, should face the extreme punishment provided by our laws."