Makabayan bloc urges House to condemn killing of broadcaster Percy Lapid

Makabayan bloc urges House to condemn killing of broadcaster Percy Lapid
Screengrab shows radio broadcaster Percy Lapid in one of his last shows aired on YouTube.
Philstar.com Screengrab / LAPID FIRE ni Percy Lapid on YouTube

MANILA, Philippines — The progressive Makabayan bloc filed a resolution Friday urging the House of Representatives to "condemn in the strongest terms" the extrajudicial killing of veteran journalist Percival Mabasa, better known as Percy Lapid.

Mabasa was shot dead on Monday at the gate of BF Resort Village in Talon Dos, Las Piñas. Police reports say he was driving along Aria St. on board his black Toyota Innova at around 8:30 p.m. when he was shot by two male suspects on board a motorcycle without a plate number.

House Resolution No. 468 urged the administration of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. to immediately investigate his murder, to hold accountable those responsible, and to take concrete steps to stop media killings and other attacks against free speech and press freedom.

House Deputy Minority Leader and Rep. France Castro (ACT Teachers Partylist) who led the filing of the petition pointed out that Lapid is the second journalist killed since Marcos Jr. took office on June 30, after Rey Blanco, also a radio broadcaster, was stabbed to death on September 18 in Mabinay, Negros Oriental.

"We believe that he was silenced due to his advocacy for truth," said Castro.

"We hope that an investigation will immediately be called by the House Committee on Human Rights on the matter, because now the perpetrators are becoming bolder and more brazen in their attacks considering that the killing was done in Metro Manila and the last program of Percy Lapid was against red tagging."

Lapid also hosted the radio show Lapid Fire in DWBL 1242 where he aired commentaries and criticism on controversial policies of the government, including the bloody drug war under former President Rodrigo Duterte, alleged corruption including online gambling operations, and historical distortion about Martial Law under the late ousted despot Ferdinand Marcos, Sr.

In his final episode, Mabasa touched on the dangers and consequences of red-tagging to the lives and safety of those red-tagged and to free speech. He was critical of Duterte, former NTF-ELCAC spokesperson Lorraine Badoy-Partosa, and most recently the malicious disinformation and harassment against Manila Judge Marlo Magdoza-Malagar. 

According to the Committee to Protect Journalists' 2021 World Impunity Index, the Philippines is the seventh in the list of countries worldwide where journalists are murdered and the perpetrators go free. 

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