DAVAO City Chief Prosecutor Raul B. Bendigo said Thursday he will endorse the libel charges filed by House Speaker Prospero C. Nograles against two city-based journalists to the Regional State Prosecutor’s Office (RSPO).

"It will be endorsed to the RSPO because I am related to the complainant," Bendigo told Sun.Star Davao.

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Bendigo further said he will do it even without the motion of the respondent for him to inhibit.

"I am disqualified if party is relative within the 4th degree by consanguinity (blood) or affinity (marriage) and the Speaker is a relative by affinity within the second degree," Bendigo said.

Nograles is Bendigo's brother-in-law.

The respondents Roger Balanza and Edgar Velez of the Durian Post, a weekly newspaper, were earlier charged with libel by Nograles.

Nograles, in his affidavit, cites February 15-21 and February 22-28 issues where he claimed Balanza destroyed his reputation.

He said the respondent identified him as a candidate for mayoralty race who engages in vote-buying to win the upcoming election.

He further said there were other articles in the issues of Durian Post written mostly by Balanza which discredit, defame, dishonor, and destroy his reputation.

He further claimed that contrary to established practices of journalism, there was no effort on the part of respondents to get his side on all stories.

Balanza, meanwhile, said he will face the charges. He earlier said he was just doing his job to give information on political issues to the public to guide them in making the right choice this coming election.

Balanza further said it was just straight reporting and done without malice. (Rhodamae M. Hernandez)