8 May 2020

A journalist based in Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental received a death threat Thursday evening, May 7, 2020, just two days after a colleague was murdered.

Roy August Bustillo, anchor and reporter of Power 91 dyGB FM and correspondent for CNN Philippines, told NUJP the number 09758133900 rang his phone briefly at 6:02 p.m. “as if to check if my line was open.”

At 6:11 p.m., he received a text message frome the same number saying: “Bos zero ning roybuz (Butstillo’s nickname) kuha n tanan sched ug lihuk nya, pwede n ni krun o sunud semana.”

(Boss, I’ve zeroed in on roybuz and have all his schedules and movements, we can do this now or next week.)

Bustillo believes the sender deliberately sent him the message.

He said he immediately had the incident recorded in a police blotter.

Asked who could be behind the threat, Bustillo said he had no idea but added that he would receive angry messages on social media whenever they would post news, especially about drug arrests.

On Tuesday, May 5, two days before Bustillo received the threat, Cornelio Pepino, reporter of Energy 93.7 FM, was gunned down as he headed home after hosting his program.

Pepino was the third journalist murdered in Dumaguete in as many years following Edmund Sestoso in 2018 and Dindo Generoso in 2019.

He was the 16th journalist slain during President Rodrigo Duterte’s term and the 186th since 1986.

NUJP Safety Office