Journalists join Rappler’ suit vs coverage ban

April 30, 2019

OVER 40 print and broadcast journalists yesterday joined Rappler’s petition to the Supreme Court questioning Malacañang’s coverage ban on the controversial online news outfit.

In a petition-for-intervention, the group led by veteran journalists Tina Monzon-Palma, Luis Teodoro, Marites Vitug, and John Nery shared Rappler’s argument that the ban violates press freedom, free speech, due process and equal protection guaranteed under the 1987 Constitution.

Also, the group expressed fear that the coverage ban “extends not only to Rappler and to its reporters and staff but also to any journalist who would write or broadcast anything that the President deems to be ‘fake news’.”

“That the ban is directed at content is clear and incapable of dispute…Absent the substantial government interest as well as the ‘clear and present danger,’ the ban constitutes impermissible content-based prior restraint of protected expression,” read the petition filed through former SC spokesman Theodore Te of the Free Legal Assistance Group.