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Pimentel’s Right Of Reply Bill (RORB) Dug Up From 1972?

March 1, 2009


news-media-montageDepending on which side of an issue people find themselves, the mass media, the working press in particular, is perceived as friend or adversary.

This is why those who’ve found themselves on the receiving end of media ‘attacks’ have been saying it’s time for journalists to behave, to be fair, or have a Sword of Damocles over them.

Libel is considered a crime and now there is the Right Of Reply Bill which if enacted can lead to the padlocking of an ‘erring’ outfit.!.pdf

It turns out that the controversial Right of Reply Bill is a blast from the past.

Sen. Francis Escudero told yesterday’s Kapihan sa Sulo Hotel news forum that Sen. Aquilino Pimentel’s ‘baby’ was actually the same draft presented at  a 1972 Senate hearing.

Martial law having been declared on September 21 of that dark year, the RORB got a ‘better’ incarnation: Ferdinand Marcos killed press freedom entirely.

But a voice from that era speaks out clearly, that of National Press Club President Eddie Monteclaro.

eddie-monteclaro-quote-on-rorbpimentel-on-rorbSen. Aquilino Pimentel fought the dictatorship at that time and it was through his militancy which resonated through the news media, that Filipino will against oppressive one-man rule was galvanized.

It is tragic that Mr. Pimentel is the one who has dug up an edict from an era writ in shame.


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