Masbate legislators to probe killing of radio reporter tagged as NPA fighter
LEGAZPI CITY—The provincial board of Masbate will investigate the killing of a reporter who was gunned down last Saturday (Nov. 14) by soldiers in a supposed clash at a village in the town of Milagros.
Jamon Espares, Masbate board member, in a phone interview said he has filed a resolution on Tuesday (Nov. 17) at the board’s committee on justice to look into the motive for the killing of Ronnie Villamor, a reporter of radio station dyME in Masbate.
Espares said he had invited officials of the Philippine Army and the Philippine National Police (PNP) based in the province to shed light on their report that tagged Villamor as a member of a New People’s Army (NPA) unit operating in Milagros.
Espares said the board would want to know the basis for authorities to tag Villamor as a member of NPA since Villamor was a radio reporter and pastor of a Christian group, too.
A police report said Villamor, with four others, engaged members of an Army Scout platoon in gunfight at the village of Matanglad past 1 p.m. on Saturday. The platoon was led by a 2Lt Maydim Jomadil.
The report also said the soldiers were on combat operation when they tried to stop five men carrying guns. The group, however, scampered and Villamor, 50, drew a handgun and aimed it at the soldiers, prompting the government troopers to return fire and kill him on the spot, according to the report.
Found on Villamor, referred to in the report as suspect, was a caliber .45 pistol, two magazines with bullets, holster, sling bag with ID cards and a mobile phone.
Gil Rivera, anchor of dyME, on Tuesday said Villamor was a reporter on his program and a member of Masbate Tri-media Organization. Rivera said the media group, led by Diosdado Briones, would issue a statement condemning the killing.
Edited by TSB
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