NUJP to media Observe accuracy in reports
Gilbert P. Bayoran (The Freeman) - September 19, 2018 - 12:00am

BACOLOD CITY, Philippines —  The head of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines–Negros Occidental has reminded colleagues to observe accuracy in their news reports.

 

This was after reports that a passenger plane crashed in a town of Negros Occidental Thursday last week. This went viral online, and caused panic among residents and netizens, according to NUJP-Negros Occidental chairperson Marchel Espina.

“We have to remember there’s a threat to free press, especially the proliferation of ‘fake news,’ that sole purpose of which is to discredit the legitimate news outlets,” said Espina, who is a former correspondent of The Freeman, and now chief editor of SunStar-Bacolod.

Various law enforcement agencies insisted that they have no knowledge about the alleged joint Philippine-US military exercises in the airspace of Negros Island, after a person reported a low-flying aircraft that led to false radio reports that a plane crashed in the Occidental.

“We assure the public that there was no accident involving any aircraft in Negros Occidental,” Leonardo said. The military exercises are held between 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., said Ofelia Leonardo of Bacolod Silay Airport CAAP.

A media advisory from CAAP-Bacolod Silay Airport, which was later relayed by the Philippine Information Agency to the media, stressed that no plane crash had occurred.

Espina said that journalists should not be peddlers of misinformation. “We have to ensure credibility, balance, and accuracy in our reporting,” she declared. While she understands the tight competition among media outlets, Espina, however, said: “We have a duty to our readers, listeners, viewers, and followers to be responsible.”

MARCHEL ESPINA
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