Martires slams PCIJ’s Mangahas for alleged ‘unethical behavior’
MANILA, Philippines – Ombudsman Samuel Martires has slammed Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism (PCIJ) Director Malou Mangahas for using in an article, their conversation, supposedly without the former’s consent.
Martires explained on Wednesday that no formal interview happened between him and Mangahas — instead, he claimed that Mangahas only trailed him during an anti-corruption summit last December 9.
He also insisted that he answered Mangahas’ questions on issues surrounding President Rodrigo Duterte’s Statement of Assets, Liabilities, and Net Worth (SALN) only in jest.
“Walang ‘interview’ na naganap tulad ng nais iparating ni Ms. Malou Mangahas. Hindi ko itinatanggi na kami’y panandaliang nag-usap ni Ms. Mangahas dahil sinalubong niya ako sa pasilyo ng Diamond Hotel habang ako’y pabalik mula sa aking ‘health break’,” Martires said in a statement.
“Tuloy-tuloy akong naglakad patungo sa conference hall habang patuloy din siyang nagtatanong na sinasagot ko naman ng pabiro. Lingid sa aking kaalalaman, isang panayam na pala ito at dagdag pa rito, for the record, hindi man lang humingi ng consent sa akin bilang interviewee,” he added.
(No interview happened between the two of us, unlike what Ms. Malou Mangahas wanted to imply. I do not deny that we briefly talked because she walked up to me along the corridor of the Diamond Hotel while I was back from my health break.)
(While I was walking back to the conference hall, she continued to ask questions that I answered jokingly. But what I did not know was that it was an interview, and in addition to this, it was on the record, and she did not bother to ask for my consent as an interviewee.)
In the PCIJ article, Mangahas pointed out that the release of Duterte’s SALN has been delayed for eight months. She said that the SALNs of administration officials have been locked with Martires at the helm of the Office of the Ombudsman — the prime agency assigned to release such documents of national officials.
The PCIJ Director said Martires advised her to get the documents from Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea.
“Well, you can go to the Office of the Executive Secretary,” Martires said, as relayed by Mangahas in her story. “Hindi kayo binibigyan ng Office of the President? Titingnan ko.” (The Office of the President does not want to give you a copy? I will look into that.)
Martires also claimed that Mangahas twisted his words, seemingly to make it appear as against President Rodrigo Duterte.
“Kaya naman laking gulat ko nang ilabas niya ang kanyang artikulo na inangguluhan pang tila ba may pormal na panayam.Hindi ko inasahan na sa kalibre ni Ms. Mangahas bilang mamahayag ay kanyang sasamantalahin ang pagkakataon na iyon,” he explained.
(That’s why I was shocked to know that she published the article which appeared as if a formal interview had happened. I did not expect that a journalist of Mangahas’ caliber would take advantage of that opportunity.)
Edited by MUF
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