The National Union of Journalist in the Philippines (NUJP) – Davao Chapter strongly condemns the arrest and calls for the immediate surface of journalist Margarita “Ging” Valle, a columnist of Davaotoday.com.
Valle remains incommunicado after she was nabbed on June 9, 2019 at 10:30am in Laguindingan Airport, Languindingan, Misamis Oriental by the operating units of Criminal Investigation and Detection Group Region 9. She was waiting for her flight back to Davao City after she attended a training-workshop in Pagadian City when the arrest happened.
The 60-year-old journalist accused of the same person identified as Elsa Renton alias Tina Maglaya with Warrant of Arrest for Multiple with Quadruple Frustrated Murder and Damage to Government Property.
Valle is a reporter since 1980s as one of the pioneers Media Mindanao News Service during the Marcos regime. Later, Valle also became an administrative officer for MindaNews in 2001 and a writer for Sunstar Davao until 2018.
Aside from being a seasoned journalist with vast experience in reporting various issues in Mindanao, Valle is also known for her community development work partnering with different non-government organizations focusing on Peace Development, Environmental Protection and community capacity and ability programs. She is also active in advocating for Human Rights in Mindanao.
Valle’s arrest adds up to the growing number of trump up charges against people with critical views of the Duterte administration and human rights violations committed by state forces under the height of Martial Law implementation in Mindanao.
We believe that the recent attack to her and other journalists is a clear twisted logic of the Duterte administration that foolishly believes in the conspiracy theory of people linking with the communist party using same pretext and plot weaved by past administrations.
We fear of the possibility that journalists working in communities may be a future target of the threat, harassment and killings as Mindanao remains under the power of Martial Law.
We call for the immediate release of Margarita “Ging” Valle and drop all trumped-up charges against her.
Defend Press Freedom!
Safety Office-Eastern Mindanao