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Mocha bites back, questions MPC stand vs bloggers

/ 10:24 AM November 09, 2017

PCOO Assistant Secretary Esther Maragaux “Mocha” Uson. (INQUIRER FILE)

“We do not have authority over you, but you want to have authority over the bloggers. Is that fair?”

Communications Assistant Secretary Mocha Uson pointed this out on Thursday to the members of the Malacañang Press Corps (MPC) after she proposed that Rappler be moved under her office’s supervision.

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Uson, in a video posted on her blog, clarified that she does not want Rappler to be banned from covering Malacañang.

“Tama po kayo. I do not have the authority over your members dahil sabi ninyo ito ay pagkitil sa freedom of the press at kahit pa na re-classify lang ang aking nire-request kay (Communications) Secretary Martin (Andanar), ito ay maliwanag na hindi ko pinapatanggal ang Rappler sa Malacañang,” she said.

But Uson questioned the MPC for resisting her assertion of authority over them while the mainstream media “wants authority” over bloggers.

“Pero ito ang tanong, ayaw niyong makialam ang social media office sa inyo, pero bakit noong inaayos na ang accreditation ng mga bloggers, kayo ay nakikialam dito? We do not have authority over you, but you want to have authority over the bloggers. Is that fair?” she said. “Akala ko ba freedom of the press ang inyong ipinaglalaban?”

Uson said the “whole point” in her letter to Andanar was for Malacañang to “be open to all forms of media, not only to the members of Malacañang Press Corps.”

“Ang Malacañang ay para sa taumbayan at hindi lang para sa iilan. Iyan ang tunay na kalayaan ng pamamahayag,” she said.

In her one page-letter to Andanar, the assistant secretary for social media requested that Rappler “be reclassified and moved from (MPC) to Social Media” as she cited that Rappler has no print or broadcast counterpart.

The MPC denounced Uson’s move, stressing that the affairs of MPC was “not in any way under the control and supervision of the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) or any government agency.”

“The MPC deplores any attempt to curtail press freedom and will continue to ensure a strong free press, keep the public informed and the government in check,” it said.

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In a subsequent letter to Andanar, Uson also requested copies of documents pertaining to the “status” of the MPC, including “copies of the Securities and Exchange Commission documents on the MPC’s registration.”   /kga

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TAGS: bloggers, journalists, Malacañang Press Corps, Mocah Uson, Rappler, Social Media
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