After printing of pork scam lists, lawmaker Aggabao sees need for right of reply
MANILA, Philippines—It’s about time to return the right of reply bill in Congress, a deputy speaker said.
Isabela representative Giorgidi Aggabao said his being allegedly included in the list of beneficiaries in the pork barrel scam compelled him to support a passage of a right of reply bill.
The bill aims to require newspapers to publish the response of subjects of their stories that implicated them.
The right to reply used to be included on the list of bills for consolidation of a freedom of information law.
He said some media outfits fail to air or print the side of those accused in the scam.
“Hindi ko naman pinapansin ito eh, until I saw a need of it,” Aggabao said in a press briefing on Tuesday. He is included in principal whistleblower Benhur Luy’’s list of solons who received kickbacks.
Asked if such a bill would be self-serving, Aggabao said in Filipino: “There needs to be a mechanism to clear your name.”
In the same briefing, Batangas Rep. Sonny Collantes expressed such frustration, saying his side was not aired even when he was interviewed by some reporters.
Collantes was also in Luy’s list.
“Ang daming nag-interview sa akin dito sa Congress. Ni -isa, walang lumabas. (Many interviewed me here in Congress. Not one of the interview was aired or published),” Collantes said.
He maintained that he had no transactions with alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles.
“I’m appealing to your sense of fairness… Pinakita ko sa media na wala naman po tayong transaksyon kay Napoles. Ala-una na ng umaga. Wala pa ring lumalabas (I told the media I had no transactions with Napoles. By 1 a.m. my side was still not aired),” Collantes said.
Originally posted: 1:33 pm | Tuesday, May 20th, 2014
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