The Philippine Daily Inquirer and its reporter, Julie M. Aurelio, Saturday bagged the top print media awards at the 14th anniversary of Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) in Quezon City.
The VACC composed mostly of relatives of victims of heinous crimes, handed out the Outstanding Newspaper Award to the Inquirer, while Aurelio was cited as this year’s Outstanding News Reporter.
“I think this is the ninth time you were given the Newspaper of the Year Award. You were inducted into the Hall of Fame four years ago,” said VACC chair Dante Jimenez during the ceremonies held at the Multi-Purpose Hall of Camp Crame, meaning the Inquirer.
The VACC handed its kalabasa (Shame) award to the Court of Appeals. The VACC said the appellate court ruled against crime victims in several cases, including those that had already been won in the lower courts.
The Inquirer was cited for “sustaining its quality publication with the highest regard for journalistic professionalism and integrity and for its unwavering standards and courageous reporting of news that enable it to maintain its credibility through the years.”
Aurelio was recognized for “her passionate commitment to responsible and fair newspaper reporting that benefited various social and political issues and concerns, including those that touch on the advocacy of justice.”
Lawyer Ma. Leonor G. Robredo, widow of former Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo and guest of honor at the ceremony, praised this year’s awardees from media, the government and the private sector.
“Even the media can make headlines reporting on other things but the focus on crime and corruption helps not just the ratings but the larger society as well. You all decided to be part of the solution rather than point fingers and play the blame game,” Robredo said.
Aurelio said the award would inspire her and the Inquirer to better serve the public and to take the lead in exposing corruption and fighting other crimes in government.
“It’s an honor to be recognized by a prestigious body for my work which I generally consider as my way of serving the people. I am very thankful for this surprise,” Aurelio said.
“This recognition inspires me and the Inquirer to be at the forefront of exposing corruption and fighting crime in our capacity as members of the fourth estate,” she added. Philip C. Tubeza