- Members of the media also called out the PNP after they attempted to arrest a media intern for doing coverage of the protest.
- He was almost taken to the police station for taking photos after being mistaken to be one of the protesters.
Members of the Philippine media called out the Philippine National Police (PNP) for attempting to arrest an intern of Manila Today who was covering the then ongoing Pride Protest.
Members and allies of the LGBTQ+ community were arrested on June 26 at Mendiola, Manila after holding a protest rally against the anti-terror bill and other national issues.
Around 20 individuals were apprehended around 10:30 am and were bought to the Manila Police District headquarters according to MPD Chief Public Information Officer Lt. Col. Carlo Magno Manuel.
He said that they didn’t intend to arrest the protesters but they were protesting without a permit.
“Napansin sila ng kapulisan at nilapitan. Tinanong kung may permit at wala silang maipakita. Hindi sila intensyon hulihin.”
He added that one protester “agitated” a policeman, which started the commotion.
But members of the media were alerted as a video uploaded by Jon Callueng made rounds online, showing the policemen trying to arrest an intern of Manila Today.
BREAKING: Police attempted to arrest intern of Manila Today, an on line independent media, doing a coverage of the Pride Protest. pic.twitter.com/RoSbW4oYl0
— Jon Callueng (@thejoncallueng) June 26, 2020
GMA News’ Raffy Tima questioned the reasoning behind the intern’s attempted arrest, asking if it was because he was only using a phone for coverage.
“Mga ser, may tinatawag pong mobile journalism, cellphone na ang gamit ng mga journalist, hindi malalaking camera!”
— Raffy Tima (@raffytima) June 26, 2020
A follow-up report from GMA News stated that the intern was nearly arrested because he was taking photos and was mistaken to be a member of the protesters.
“Hindi po bawal kumuha ng litrato at video sa pampublikong lugar, media ka man o sibilyan,” Tima wrote on his tweet.
And it keeps coming! Hindi po bawal kumuha ng litrato at video sa pampublikong lugar, media ka man o sibilyan! @pnppio may bago po bang directive, memo o batas na hindi namin alam? https://t.co/eanaacFint
— Raffy Tima (@raffytima) June 26, 2020
Journalist and news anchor Atom Araullo also failed to see the reason behind the intern’s attempted arrest.
Ano ngayon kung kumukuha ng litrato o video? Kailan pa naging labag sa batas yun? https://t.co/stu9bATqk5
— Atom Araullo (@atomaraullo) June 26, 2020
They also called out Leyte Rep. Lucy Torres-Gomez for saying that fear of abuse of law is not a “valid reason” to oppose the anti-terror bill.
Eto nga pala 'yung sinasabi ni Lucy Torres na "fear of abuse is not a valid reason to junk the terror bill" BULAG-BULAGAN school of governance talaga https://t.co/3ciCN85Axb
— Richard Bolisay (@richardbolisay) June 26, 2020
Just a day before, GMA News reporter Mark Makalalad shared an unpleasant experience with the police when he was doing a live report on Marcos Highway in Marikina City.
According to his Facebook post, four policemen approached him after he went life and reprimanded him for supposedly not getting a clearance or permission from them before live reporting.
“Araw-araw po ako nag-l-live report sa iba’t ibang lugar, ngayon lang ako nakirinig na kailangan magpaalam sa pulis kapag magl-live. Bago po ba yang utos kasi lilinawin ko yan sa JTF-Covid Shield,” he wrote.
What disturbed him the most is one police said that the reason why they approached him is that he may be an “enemy.”
Manila Today then released a statement condemning the arrest of their intern Habagat Farrales.
Manila Today condemns the attempted arrest of our correspondent of two years and current intern Habagat Farrales apparently because he identified to be from UP. The forceful dispersal–pulling, pushing, bodily hauling of protesters and Mr. Farrales–at the Pride Protest today pic.twitter.com/kNtCUy2sjD
— Manila Today (@manila_today) June 26, 2020
Aside from the anti-terror bill, the protesters also rallied against the jeepney phase-out, LGBTQ+ discrimination, and lack of mass testing.