THE National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) condemned the inclusion of its member and former director Cong Corrales, his wife and son in an anonymous list, tagging them as members of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP).
The NUJP said, “There is nothing more cowardly and deplorable than to vilify persons and put them in mortal peril behind the cloak of anonymity.”
“And as has happened all too often, red tagging is not mere intimidation. All too often it can be a virtual death sentence,” the NUJP said.
“Even media have not been spared from Red-tagging and other acts clearly intended to intimidate a critical press into silence, as with the ongoing vilification campaign against the NUJP and the cyberattacks on alternative media,” it added.
In his statement, Corrales, a current associate editor of a newspaper in Cagayan de Oro, called the people behind the “hit list” cowards and denied that they were or are currently members of the rebel group.
“My wife is a marketing executive with Gold Star Daily, where I am the associate editor. My son is a regular staff of the Commission on Elections-10 and is currently serving in the commission's city office. Our credentials are readily available,” Corrales said.
He said the list not only intimidates him as a journalist but endangered his family.
“We know fully well that red-tagging is a virtual death sentence. On my end, I will not let this cowardly act push me to silence. I will continue speaking truth to power,” Corrales added.
The Cagayan de Oro Press Club also released a statement regarding the red-tagging of Corrales and family.
“We, the Board of Directors of the Cagayan de Oro Press Club (COPC), strongly debunk the allegation that Board Member Leonardo Vicente “Cong” Corrales is affiliated with the Communist Party of the Philippines as what has been stated in a document circulated during a press conference in a hotel this morning, Feb. 22, 2019.
“Aside from him, Board Member Corrales’ wife and son have been accused as well.
“Mr. Corrales is an active member of the local media community being the associate editor of Mindanao Gold Star Daily, a local daily with a Mindanao-wide circulation.
“Let it be known that we will stand with Board Member Corrales as we call on the authorities to investigate this red-tagging and ensure that media personalities be spared from this accusation.”