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NUJP wants apology from NBI over agents’ impersonation as media men

/ 02:52 PM March 07, 2013

MANILA, Philippines—The National Union of Journalist of the Philippines called on the Justice Secretary Leila De Lima and National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) Director Nonnatus Rojas to issue a public apology after its agents posed as media practitioners to conduct a surveillance of the residence of Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram III.

Reports had it that the NBI’s Technical Intelligence Division called up a TV5 reporter to say they wanted to observe and gather information at Kiram’s house. Upon arriving at Kiram’s house, the NBI agents said they wanted to  pose as TV5 news crew to which the reporter did not allow. The reporter also told the Sultan’s wife Fatima about the agents’ presence. Still, the NBI agents introduced themselves as part of the TV news crew.

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“The charade pulled off by the NBI agents was not only unethical, it was downright criminal. They not only willfully endangered the reporter but all other journalists who have been covering the Kiram family amid the unfolding crisis in Sabah,” the NUJP said in its statement.

“We demand the following from Justice Secretary Leila de Lima:

         To issue, with NBI Director Nonnatus Ceasar Rojas, an immediate public apology to the media and a promise not to let such an incident happen again;

         To immediately relieve, if not fire, the agents and whoever ordered them to undertake the operation; and

         To file the appropriate administrative and criminal charges against them,” NUJP further stated.

However, De Lima denied having knowledge about the NBI agents who went to the Kiram’s house in Taguig Wednesday.

“I immediately texted (NBI) Director Rojas last night after I saw the news and Director Rojas denied issuing any instruction, any order to that effect…Walang authority,” De Lima said adding that she already ordered to investigate the matter if those three who went to the Sultan’s house were really NBI agents.

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TAGS: Features, Global Nation, Media, NBI agents, Press Freedom, Sabah standoff
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