Former journalist gunned down in the Philippines

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) express condolences over the shooting-murder of a former journalist in Batangas in Luzon, in the central Philippines on April 13.

Melinda Magsino-Lubis, Photo credit: NUJP

Melinda Magsino-Lubis, Photo credit: NUJP

Melinda Magsino-Lubis, 41, was a former correspondent of the Philippine Daily Inquirer in Batangas and has received death threats in 2005 after she reported on local corruption involving the Batangas Governor Armando Sanchez. Magsino died when she was gunned down at midday as she walked along the street. She was shot by two assialants on a motocycle and died at the scene.

Following the death threats in 2005, Magsino left her post with the Philippine Daily Inquirer. In the years that followed she had worked with the Philippine Centre for Investigative Journalism and TV5, as well as starting a blog with a number of Batangas journalists, the most recent post was from September 2014. More recently, Magsino had not been actively reporting, yet remained active on social media commenting on social issues before her death.

The circumstances and motive surrounding Magsino’s death are still unclear.

Dabet Panelo, NUJP project coordinator said: “If future details reveal that Magsino’s death involved her former work as a journalist, she will be the second journalist killed this year.”

IFJ Asia Pacific acting director, Jane Worthington said: “The IFJ offer its condolences to the family and colleagues of Melinda Magzino-Lubis who was murdered in cold blood. This senseless murder highlights the challenges facing journalists across the Philippines.”

The IFJ and NUJP call on the Philippine authorities to thoroughly investigate this murder an bring those responsible to justice.