The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) believes that the media’s role in the ongoing COVID-19 emergency is vital in informing both the government and the people on the real situation on the ground and useful in making the right decisions.
The announcement therefore that the media must secure an identification card from the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) in order to be allowed to cover is unfortunate and may prove counterproductive when vetted information from media professionals is most needed by the already nervous populace.
Media outfits have issued safety guidelines to their journalists. We are aware that we need to contribute to the resolution of this emergency and we can do it best by doing our jobs as journalists. Making it difficult for us to contribute does not help at all.
We urge Malacañang to reconsider its decision. The media are better as partners during emergencies.