Category Archives: LIBEL

ROQUE SLAMS INQUIRER FOR ‘MALICIOUS’ REPORTS

Malice in 2 stories ‘very clear’

MANILA – Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque on Sunday lashed out at the daily broadsheet Philippine Daily Inquirer (PDI) for publishing two reports about groups opposing his nomination for a seat at the UN International Law Commission (ILC), a body of experts tasked with developing and… Read More

NOBEL PRIZE AWARDEE Maria Ressa blames Duterte gov’t for her cyber libel rap

RESSA A CONVICTED FELON FOR CYBER LIBEL

By ROGER M. BALANZA

Rappler founder Maria Ressa on Tuesday, October 12, stood firm on her claim the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte was behind the cyberlibel crime filed against her even as she thanked Malacanang for congratulating her for winning the Nobel Peace Prize 2021 for journalism.

Rappler CEO and executive editor Maria Ressa is escorted by police after posting bail in Pasig Regional Trial Court on March 29, 2019.

Ressa and Russian journalist Dmitry Muratov won the 2021 Nobel prize for braving the “wrath of their respective governments to expose corruption and misrule.”

“I suppose thank you and then what I didn’t appreciate is almost hand in hand it came with a hit,” Ressa said of the Malacañang statement congratulating her for her award.

However, Ressa spiced up the thank you with a sour note relating to the cyberlibel rap filed against her..

“Hand in hand with that (congratulation) was this reminder, which is a lie… that the cyberlibel complaint is filed by an individual and what the government repeatedly refuses to say is that it takes a government to actually file a criminal case, ” she said.

“So this is the government’s case, it’s the Department of Justice’s, it is their decision. So they should really own it. So thanks, but not thanks, ” Ressa said.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque on Monday said in a virtual press briefing,that the Palace is congratulating Ressa but slammed the journalist for her claim about government being behind the libel case.

The criminal liability of Maria Ressa remains pending in our courts and we leave it to our courts,” Roque said. Ressa is on bail from a libel rap filed by a businessman.

Roque said Ressa still has to clear her name before the Philippine court.

“In fact, she’s a convicted felon for cyber libel in the Philippines and faces other cases in the Philippines and that’s for the court to decide,” he said.

Ressa is the first Filipino recipient of the prestigious citation. She was also the first woman to receive this year’s Nobel Prize award.

Roque congratulated Ressa, noting that the award is “a victory for a Filipina.”

Roque said press freedom in the Philippines is alive “and the proof is the Nobel prize award given to Maria Ressa.”

IS MINDANISIA ‘PRESIDENT’ ELY PAMATONG running in 2022 for president of the Philippines?


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Antique congressional aspirant wants to decriminalize libel

SAN JOSE DE BUENAVISTA, Antique – An Antiqueño lawyer aspiring to represent his province’s lone district in Congress will push to decriminalize libel against media practitioners once elected in the May 2022 elections.

Lawyer Abdiel Dan Elijah Fajardo, former national president of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP), filed his certificate of candidacy (COC) under the Liberal Party (LP) at the Commission on Elections (Comelec) provincial office here on Wednesday.

“My father and I had since been advocating for the decriminalization of libel against media practitioners, so hopefully I would win in the election so I could pursue it,” he said in a press conference that followed.

“Due to fear of libel suits, media practitioners could not freely express their opinions for they might be committing public and malicious imputation of a crime, or a vice or defect or to have caused dishonor on a person,” he added.

A media practitioner found to have committed libel, as provided for under Article 353 of the Revised Penal Code, has to face prision correccional in its minimum and medium periods or a fine ranging from PHP200 to PHP6,000 or both.

The media under Article 353 of the Revised Penal Code may also face civil action, which may be brought by the offended party.

“The media, who are already almost struggling in their economic existence also, would of course be cowered in expressing their opinions so as not to get a libel suit,” Fajardo added.

He said those who are also usually filing libel against media practitioners are only after the civil action because of the damage caused on their reputation and not really imprisonment of the media so there is a need for the decriminalization of libel.

Fajardo is the eldest son of the late Daniel Gumban Fajardo, who published the regional newspaper Panay News and served as president of the Iloilo Press Club (IPC), a media organization. 

PACQUIAO FILES P100M libel cases vs. Quiboloy

Libel case mere propaganda

 September 14, 2021

DAVAO CITY – The libel cases filed by Senator Manny Pacquiao are retaliatory and politicalin nature considering that election season is coming, said the legal counsel of Pastor Apollo Quiboloy, the founder of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ.Pacquiao filed PHP100-million libel and cyber libel cases… Read More