Anti-Indecency Board fines Brigada over ‘controversial’ radio interview

Anti-Indecency Board fines Brigada over ‘controversial’ radio interview
Photo courtesy of Ramil V. Ayuman

THE Cebu City Anti-Indecency Board (Caib) imposed a five-figure fine on radio station Brigada News FM Cebu and its broadcasters, lawyer Juril Patiño and Dennes Tabar, for their controversial live interview with a minor rape victim from Dumanjug, Cebu, on March 13, 2024.

The interview, which went viral, drew criticism for being unethical.

Caib also demanded a public apology from the radio station and broadcasters.

“The public apology will be aired in their program and posted on their social media page,” said Caib chairman Lucelle Mercado, according to a Cebu City Public Information Office report on March 20.

During the broadcast, the anchormen prompted the four-year-old child to recall in detail the sexual abuse she had suffered, with the interview also being aired live on the station’s Facebook page. The Facebook Live video has since been deleted.

The broadcasters admitted their wrongdoing and accepted responsibility during a hearing with the Caib members, according to the PIO report.

Caib will send a formal letter to the radio station outlining its decision. It said it may recommend the station’s closure to the city mayor if a similar violation occurs in the future.

“If magkagrabe (if its violations become severe), we can recommend to the City the closure of the establishment. Nabuhat na ni namo sauna, ilabi na ni’ng mga erring establishments (We’ve done this before, especially with those erring establishments,” Mercado said.

She, however, assured due process in regard to all complaints lodged with them.

Caib, which serves as the City’s “morality police,” was created under City Ordinance 2346.

Meanwhile, Brigada News FM radio station earlier said it is currently conducting its own probe into the incident.

Brigada News FM’s area manager, Raul del Prado, in a letter, committed to addressing the complaints seriously.

He said administrative sanctions have been imposed on Patiño and Tabar, both of whom have expressed regret for their actions and are willing to accept responsibility.

Aside from Caib, the Police Regional Office in Central Visayas (PRO 7) also ordered an investigation into Brigada’s interview with the minor rape victim.

PRO 7 maintained that Brigada’s interview with the minor happened in the premises of the child’s residence, not at the Dumanjug police station, and was done without the consent or knowledge of the police. / WBS


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