A RADIO broadcaster was shot to death in Mindoro on Monday, the third journalist in just over a month to be murdered in one of the most dangerous countries for media workers.
A gunman riding a motorcycle shot Nilo Baculo, 67, from close range outside his home in the small, central city of Calapan, local police chief Superintendent Glicerio Cansilao said.
“We are investigating whether it had something to do with his work, although at the moment we could not say categorically,” Cansilao said.
He said Baculo used to work as a commentator and newsreader for the DWIM radio until it shut down last year.
The Philippines is the third most dangerous country in the world to be a media worker, behind Syria and Iraq, according to the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists.
The Philippines is so dangerous because of what is described as a “culture of impunity”, where powerful figures, such as politicians or businessmen, can organize the killing of journalists or other critics without fear of being caught.
These figures can rely on corrupt police and politicians, as well as a graft-tainted judicial system, to ensure they will not be held to account.
Baculo’s murder came after another radio broadcaster was shot dead in the southern city of Davao on May 23. A fortnight earlier yet another radio broadcaster was shot dead in Mindanao.
Four journalists have been killed this year, and 33 since President Benigno Aquino came to power in 2010, according to the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines.