Another journalist is killed, number of slain scribes reach 61 under Arroyo

Another journalist has been killed: Aristeo Padrigao, commentator at dxRS Radyo Natin in Misamis Oriental, died from a single bullet wound in the head yesterday.

Padrigao is the 61st journalist to be killed in the line of duty since President Arroyo.

In a statement, the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) said:

The horrific pattern of antagonism and violence against journalists in the Philippines is a disgrace and must end.

It is a gross failure on the part of the Government and police force that journalists continue to lose their lives in the struggle to protect and uphold press freedom and freedom of expression for all people in the Philippines.

The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) meanwhile called for greater vigilance among Filipino journalists:

We call on our colleagues not to waver, to continue banding together and remain vigilant against all attempts to suppress us and the independent Philippine media.

The struggle for genuine press freedom in our country has been a long and painful one and will continue to be a long and painful one. But we cannot waver. We must see this struggle through to the end and the inevitable victory that awaits us and our people.

Condolences to Padrigao’s family, most especially to the son he brought to the university yesterday just before he was killed.