Nalzaro: Police should not blame the media

POLICE Regional Office (PRO) 7 Director Robert Quenery urged the media not to count the incidents of killings happening now in the Metro Cebu area. He blamed the media for focusing on the deaths, which have alarmed local officials and the public.

Quenery seems to be accusing the media of reporting these incidents out of proportion. I would like to remind Quenery that the workings of the media are quite different from law enforcement. Media documents cases so we can present figures to the public.

Quenery has no business interfering in our work. First, we did not make up or invent stories. The truth is that there is a spate of killings and there is a pattern, where most of the victims were allegedly involved in illegal drugs. Even an elementary pupil can see the pattern. In most cases, the killings were perpetrated by motorcycle-riding gunmen except in the shooting of former Talisay City Councilor Emil Go and the attempt on the life of businessman Wellington Lim where the perpetrators were on board sports utility vehicles.

Why is media documenting these cases? Because it is part of our job. When we get reactions from our news sources, at least, we can present figures. Isn’t it alarming that the number of unsolved killings has reached almost 50? In Lapu-Lapu City alone, from the middle of February up to this writing, around 20 killings happened.
Which raises raises speculations that a vigilante group is operating in the city.
But the police downplayed the claim that these are the work of a vigilante group saying the killings were perpetrated by a drug syndicate. They are killing each other. The media is not exaggerating on these because we also based our count on what is actually happening and on the police report.

Some of our police officers invite the media to a press conference if they present their accomplishments or positive reports. As for the negative reports or commentaries, they immediately blame the media and tend to evade its scrutiny. That is very unfair.

But the police and the media should not be blaming each other just because we differ in our profession. In fact, the police should be thankful to the media because the latter is supporting them in terms of information dissemination. The police should not take the reports personally. On the part of the media, we are not here to destroy the institution. We are helping the police and we should compliment each other.

•••

Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre’s allegation that the “former political has been” is a drug protector has no big impact compared to that allegation against “has--been” mayor Mike Rama, who was named by no less than Pres. Duterte as a drug protector.

Who is more powerful and credible, a Cabinet member or the president? Besides, Aguirre’s “expose” came in late. Had he not been threatened with disbarment by the “former political has-been,” I doubt if he will divulge the content of the affidavit of Reynaldo “Jumbo” Diaz, cousin of the late drug lord, Jeffrey “Jaguar” Diaz. It was a sort of Aguirre’s “resbak.” Mahulog man ni nga personalan.

Meanwhile, Rama is still carrying an extra baggage over the president’s allegations naming him as a drug protector. Nagpadayon ang “Buhing Kalbaryo” ni Mike Rama.
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