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ABS-CBN suspends Drilon for 3 months


INQUIRER.net
First Posted 19:59:00 07/05/2008

Filed Under: Ces Drilon kidnapping, Crime, Media

MANILA, Philippines -- Broadcast giant ABS-CBN has suspended news anchor Ces Drilon for disobeying orders not to go to Indanan, Sulu, where she and her cameramen Jimmy Encarnacion and Angelo Valderama were kidnapped by an armed group.

In a statement posted on its website, ABS-CBN on Saturday said Drilon is suspended for three months as news anchor of late night newscast Bandila and as Senior Correspondent.

Citing its Standards & Ethics Manual, the ABS-CBN News & Current Affairs said: ?While all reporting of conflict and other hazardous environments involves an element of risk, you must avoid obvious danger and not take unreasonable risks?You may move into a dangerous environment only with the authorization of your supervisor."

Drilon, her team, and professor Octavio Dinampo were kidnapped by alleged members of the Abu Sayyaf Group while pursuing a story in Sulu and were held captive for nine days before they were safely released, following alleged payment of some P5 million to 10 million ransom, according to reports.

Valderama was freed on June 12 after payment of ?board and lodging fee.?

Earlier, Drilon apologized to her supervisors for disobeying their orders and to her cameramen for unwittingly endangering their lives.

In the same ABS-CBN announcement, excerpts of Drilon?s memo were revealed. "I respectfully accept the sanctions you deem proper in my disregard of your order. I cannot put into words how deeply I regret having put my team in danger ... and having caused anxiety and stress to the whole organization,? she wrote.

While praising Drilon for her courage during her ordeal, Maria Ressa, head of the ABS-CBN News & Current Affairs, also stressed the need to hold Drilon accountable for the ?grave consequences of her error in judgment.?



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