Media groups urged to release records of massacre aid
MANILA, Philippines— The Presidential Task Force on Media Security (PTFoMS) has asked some media groups to publicly release a financial report about the aid for the families of the Maguindanao massacre victims.
Documents sent to INQUIRER.net showed the PTFoMS addressing a letter to certain media groups, among them the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP).
In the letter, the PTFoMS sent a resolution asking the groups to publicly release a financial report about the monetary grants they had received from local and international donors to help the families of the massacre victims.
However, the group Justice Now, which represents the families of the media members who died in the massacre, said they had not been demanding the NUJP to release its records of the funds and other assistance meant for them.
“We are aware that, although no names were mentioned, the supposed demand for accountability was primarily targeted at the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines, which, we once again stress, was one of the first organizations to rush to our side right after the massacre and has never left us since then,” Justice Now said in a statement issued last April 23.
According to the group, it understands that the NUJP does not have funds for this kind of work and “that what it does is help source and secure the assistance needed by the families of murdered journalists, not only those of the victims of the massacre.”
NUJP President Nonoy Espina told INQUIRER.net in a phone interview that, through his group, the International Federation of Journalists had aided the bereaved families by means of scholarships for their children.
He said that 60 children had received scholarships coursed through the NUJP.
However, the IFP informed the NUJP the funding stopped due to lack of funds.
“The NUJP has also been very open with us, updating and consulting us regularly,” Justice Now said.
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