As Filipino journalists all over the country mourn the passing of fellow newsman Nonoy Espina, his family informed the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) on Thursday, July 8, that they wish to channel all “abuloy” or donations for his funeral to a health and welfare fund for journalists and media workers.
Nonoy, former NUJP chairperson, died of liver cancer on Wednesday, July 7, in his hometown in Bacolod City.
“We know so many colleagues live under precarious economic conditions, with no tenure and often, with little social benefits,” Nonoy’s sister, Inday Espina-Varona, said in a Facebook post.
According to a March 2021 survey conducted by NUJP, 15 percent of the more than 200 journalists polled nationwide receive a measly salary of P5,000 and below per month, while 19 percent have a monthly salary ranging from P5,000-P10,000.
The pandemic has further exposed the economic vulnerabilities of journalists and media workers, with many unable to afford medical treatment when they get sick.
“Pagtibayin natin ang hanay to fight for better wages and work conditions,” Inday, also a veteran journalist, stated further. “But let us let Nonoy spark us into doing the practical. Ambag ambag tayo para sa kapatirang mamamahayag.”
The NUJP Board of Directors warmly accepted the Espina family’s offer, knowing that Nonoy would have wished that too. He had always been caring and compassionate with fellow media workers, especially those struggling in the communities.
In fact, when NUJP organized a fundraiser last month, Nonoy did not want it to be for him alone, saying that other colleagues are also in need.
Today, the NUJP formally announces the Nonoy Espina Emergency Fund for Media Workers in honor of its former chairperson.
“Magandang paraan ito ng pagbibigay pugay kay Chair Nonoy at sa pagpapatuloy ng pagmamalasakit niya at ng unyon sa mga kapwa mamamahayag,” NUJP Chairperson Jonathan de Santos said.
“Kahit minsan parang tayo-tayo na lang ang nagtutulungan, malaking bagay pa rin na kaya at handa tayong gawin ito para sa isa’t-isa,” he added.
NUJP will announce the guidelines for the fund in the coming days. #
Please send donations to:
Account name: National Union of Journalists of the Philippines
Account number: 007-229-50756-3
Branch: Metrobank Kamuning
SWIFT Code: MBTCPHMM
Bank address: Metrobank Plaza Building, Sen. Gil J. Puyat Avenue, Makati, Metro Manila
Jhoanna Paola Ballaran