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Killed while crying out for justice

/ 04:24 AM April 18, 2015

Two women were killed in Batangas province in a span of four days by armed men riding on motorcycles.

Melinda “Mei” Magsino, 40, a former Inquirer correspondent and online journalist, was shot in the head in Batangas City on Monday as she was walking from her house to a health clinic which she owned.

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Magsino’s killer fled on a motorcycle driven by another man.

READ: Ex-PDI reporter shot dead in Batangas

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On Thursday night, Ramona Tarnate, 44, was shot at close range while she was driving a motorcycle with her 16-year-old son to buy food in Nasugbu town.

Tarnate’s killer was a passenger of a motorcycle driven by another man.

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Magsino was a feisty journalist who created many enemies because of her exposés of graft and corruption in government in her province.

READ: Tribute to a journalist who feared becoming another statistic | What Went Before: Ex-PDI correspondent Mei Magsino

Tarnate, on the other hand, was a simple Nasugbu municipal employee who was crying for justice after being raped allegedly by a town official.

Tarnate had only one known enemy—her alleged rapist, Councilor Wilfredo Limboc, whom she had charged in court.

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My public service program at radio dwIZ, “Isumbong mo kay Tulfo,” helped Tarnate file a rape case against Limboc for which he is currently detained at the town jail.

Tarnate had complained to me that the judge to whom her case was assigned had been trying to convince her not to pursue the case against the councilor.

Her brother was likewise badgering her to drop the case.

The brother told her he had received threats that harm would come to her or other members of their family if she didn’t drop the case.

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A single mother, Tarnate told my female staff she would have forgotten about the rape because she didn’t want to be ridiculed by her town mates, if another whammy hadn’t come her way from the councilor.

Tarnate alleged that the councilor infected her with venereal disease, and that when she went to him to ask money to buy medicine for her illness, she was rebuffed.

Lawyer Jovito Barte, her counsel who brought her to me, said that with her death, Limboc will go scot free as there is no longer a complainant.

Ramona Tarnate was killed while crying out for justice.

* * *

Caloocan Representative Edgar Erice, chair of the Liberal Party’s political affairs, said the next president should have “integrity, competence and experience.”

Although Erice didn’t have him in mind, Davao City Mayor Rody Duterte fits the bill: integrity, competence and experience in governance.

Never been charged with graft, Duterte has been mayor of the most progressive and peaceful city in Mindanao for more than two decades.

Duterte may have ranked third in the latest survey (along with Interior Secretary Mar Roxas), but watch the results of the surveys in the coming months when the Davao City mayor finally declares he’s throwing his hat into the presidential ring.

The small-but-terrible Manny Piñol, aformer journalist, former provincial governor and political analyst, said the results of the surveys could have been higher if the respondents were sure Duterte was running.

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TAGS: Crime, Media killings, Mei Magsino, Melinda Magsino, Ramon Tulfo, Ramona Tarnate
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