Veteran broadcaster Jay Sonza drew the ire of netizens for calling Rappler CEO Maria Ressa “ugly” in a Facebook post.
Sonza, who supports the Duterte administration, also called Ressa a “tiburcio” or tomboy.
“Maria Ressa – inis siya sa pagmumukha niyang ubod ng pangit. Feeling niya nasa war zone siya araw-araw dahil sa Pilipinas halos lahat ng makasalubong niya magaganda,” Sonza wrote.
“She is actually at war with her self-inflicted failures in life. May face siya pero ngetpa (panget). May pekpek siya pero tiburcio siya. Si Maria Ressa ang nilalang na ipinaglihi sa sama ng loob,” he added.
Sonza vented his anger on Ressa after the latter claimed that reporting in the Philippines under the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte was worse than being in a war zone.
In an interview on American television network CBS, Ressa said her arrest earlier this year was meant to silence her.
She further noted that the country’s current media landscape was “far worse than any war zone” that she had ever worked in.
Ressa and other officers of Rappler faced several lawsuits, including a cyber libel complaint, tax evasion, and alleged violations of the country’s Anti-Dummy Act.
Rappler alleged that it has been subject to harassment and bullying by the Duterte administration.
The President himself had reportedly made repeated false accusations against Rappler, including being supposedly funded by the United States Central Intelligence Agency.
Its reporters and correspondents have also been barred from covering all presidential events.
Many netizens rallied behind Ressa.
They took to social media to express their disappointment over Sonza’s “insensitive” remarks.
One wrote, “Wow! Ang guapo mo naman! Napakabastos mo… Look at the mirror first. Between you and Ms. Ressa, I will pick her face over yours.”
“Nagsalita ang tisoy… 3 yrs ng troll… hindi pa din naappoint,” another netizen said.
A netizen added, “Nakakahiya sa kagwapuhan ni Jay Sonza ano? Wala pa rin bang posisyon sa gobyernong ito? Panay ang tahol eh.”
Si Jay Sonza, wala yatang salamin sa bahay. Pahiramin nyo nga ang lolo nyo para mapagtanto niyang wala siyang karapatang magsabi na pangit ang kapwa niya. https://t.co/ZxDW2WC8Ro
— ogie diaz (@ogiediaz) November 11, 2019
Jay Sonza is a journalist like Maria Ressa. That is all I can say because this person is beyond hate. Didn't he try unsuccessfully to run as senator and vice president? He has become so bitter that he couldn't see the irony of his post. @PinoyAkoBlog pic.twitter.com/cEQFilCS0J
— That Nook (@that_nook) November 11, 2019
Before his remark bashing Ressa, Sonza uploaded a photo of a pistol on Facebook.
He claimed that it was “the latest model of a handgun designed” for the camp of Vice President Leni Robredo.
“This the latest model of a handgun exclusively designed for Leni Robredo and company only,” he said.
“Hindi po kayo namamali. ‘Pag kalabit mo, putok sa iyo. Sure fire!” he added.
Last week, opposition leader Robredo accepted her appointment as co-chair of the Inter-agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD).
She said she would pursue an anti-drug campaign without “senseless” killings.
Duterte’s anti-drug campaign has been criticized worldwide for thousands of killings, but the administration has defended it, saying those slain had resisted arrest.
Sonza is among those who support the President’s “deadly” war on drugs.
“Lahat halos ng mga bansa sa buong mundo gustong gayahin iyong Duterte War On Drugs. Pres. Donald Trump wants it implemented and done in the USA, especially after the massacre of Americans by the Mexico drug cartel,” Sonza wrote in another Facebook post.
“On the other hand, [BP] Leni is seeking US advise (sic) on illegal drugs campaign. Is this woman naive or simply stupid?” he added.
The Vice President on Friday, November 8, said she will meet with officials of the United States (US) and the United Nations (UN) to discuss the government’s campaign against illegal drugs.
She said she will have a meeting with officials of the US Embassy “to coordinate the flow of cooperation and information.”
Robredo added that she will also meet the UN officers in the Philippines to learn something from their “researches and studies on best practices and lessons from other countries regarding the campaign against illegal drugs.”