Tell it to SunStar: CCPC applauds quick creation of SITG to probe murder of Misamis Occ. broadcaster

tell it to sunstar
tell it to sunstar

By Atty. Pachico A. Seares, Cebu Citizens-Press Council, executive director

Statement of Cebu Citizens-Press Council (CCPC) on the shooting to death of Juan Jumalon, radio newscaster of 94.7 Calamba Gold FM, gunned down while he was on air Sunday, Nov. 5, 2023.

Even as we appreciate the prompt condemnation of the murder of broadcaster Juan “Johnny Walker” Jumalon of Calamba, Misamis Occidental -- especially the reactions of persons in high places, with the duty and power to end impunity in the killing of journalists -- we applaud more the quick harnessing of forces to solve the crime.

These were done just hours after the killing: (1) The SITG or Special Investigation Task Group was formed by the Philippine National Police (PNP). (2) The assistance of National Bureau of Investigation, with the committed resources of Department of Justice, was obtained by PTFoMS or Presidential Task Force on Media Security.

That’s a lot of improvement in response since the July 22, 2021 murder of radio commentator Renante Cortes and the December 2021 frustrated murder of Rico Osmeña, another radio commentator.

The tragedies that struck both Cebu block-time broadcasters got much slower reaction. It wasn’t known if an SITG was even formed for Cortes, as the Cebu City police directly turned over his case, six months after the incident, to CIDG. An SITG, routine protocol in the PNP Manual of Operations, was certainly formed to investigate the gun attack on Rico Osmeña, from which he survived bullet wounds in the neck and the back. But Osmeña’s SITG was created only on Feb. 3, 2022, several weeks after the Dec. 16, 2021 shooting. Both Cortes and Osmeña files had long been moved as cold cases to CIDG (Criminal Investigation and Detection Group).

We join the voices condemning the brazenness of the Misamis Occidental crime: Juan Jumalon was shot in the head right in his home studio and when he was on air, the show live-streamed on Facebook Live. That, as we thank the authorities for the immediate response. We hope the SITG, along with NBI and DOJ (Department of Justice) will soon have the evidence to solve the crime and convict the culprits.


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