MALACAÑANG strongly condemned the killing of a veteran radio announcer yesterday morning in Villasis, Pangasinan.
The Presidential Task Force on Media Security (PTFoMS) described the attack on broadcaster Virgilio Maganes of DWPR Radio Station Dagupan City as an act of cowardice.
On Nov.8, 2016 Maganes survived an attempt on his life by feigning death. He was shot six times by motorcycle-riding gunmen.
Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary and PTFoMS Co-Chair Martin Andanar immediately directed Media Security Executive Director Undersecretary Joel Egco to swiftly act and personally handle the matter.
Initial investigation reaching PTFoMS office showed that Maganes, 62, was shot several times by gunmen riding a motorcyle around 6:45 a.m. near his home in Licsab, Brgy. San Blas, Villasis, Pangasinan.
The veteran broadcaster died on the spot. Investigators recovered six empty shells of .45 pistol at the crime scene.
“We are deeply saddened by the untimely death of Virgilio Maganes and extend our sincerest condolences to his family. This administration condemns any type of killing, especially those in the media,” Andanar said.
The Palace official also urged the Philippine National Police to go after the perpetrators and masterminds in the killing and bring them to justice.
For his part, Egco said they are looking at all angles to determine the motive for the killing of Maganes, his personal friend.
“PTFoMS is on top of the situation and is closely coordinating with Maganes’ family, friends and local police officials to learn more details about the incident. In fact, I will oversee the investigation personally and conduct a case conference before visiting the wake”, Egco added.
This cowardly killing in the midst of a pandemic is unforgivable, Egco said.
“We will get to the bottom of this and will stop at nothing in identifying and hunting down the people behind this despicable crime. It will be just a matter of time before these murderers will be brought to justice,” he promised.
Through the efforts of PTFoMS, a frustrated murder charge was filed in court against one of the suspects but was later on dismissed on the basis of an Affidavit of Desistance executed by Maganes.
PTFoMS is mandated to ensure the safety and security of media workers. The task force initially presumes all forms of violence against media workers to be work-related until further investigation proves otherwise.