Archive for September, 2010

Fighting Impunity

Ten months have passed and still there is no sign of justice prevailing.

To commemorate the first anniversary of the Ampatuan Massacre, the Center for Media Freedom & Responsibility (CMFR) is holding a multimedia competition aimed at increasing public awareness on the culture of impunity in the country.

The said contest, entitled Fighting Impunity: The 2010 Multi-Media Competition, was launched Wednesday morning at the University of the Philippines College of Mass Communication (UP CMC) auditorium.

The launch, which was sponsored by the Freedom Fund for Filipino Journalists (FFFJ), was opened by CMC Dean Rolando Tolentino and continued with a short lecture on impunity from CMFR Executive Director Melinda Quintos de Jesus.

De Jesus said that inconsistencies in the country’s system of law and order had long been prevalent and didn’t just start with the Ampatuan Massacre. Although there is no direct Filipino translation for the word impunity, De Jesus explained that its culture intensifies because of a weak judicial system, poor police investigation, lack of witnesses, and inadequate funds. She also said that the culture of impunity often leads to intimidation and fear, which both cause failure to prosecute.

The main reason for launching Fighting Impunity, according to De Jesus, was indeed to improve awareness and prevent indifference among the public. As media practitioners continue to face threats and attacks, it is very important to promote press freedom and protect the fourth estate.

Professor Luis Teodoro, who is also the CMFR Deputy Executive Director, discussed the mechanics for the contest. Any enrolled college student may join the competition and they can submit original entries in any desired category: commemorative poster, radio plug, or a short video. Deadlines will be on October 11 (poster category), October 20 (radio category), and October 29 (video category). All entries will be evaluated by the board members of FFFJ and a total prize of P120, 000 will be divided among the winners. For more details on the contest mechanics, click here.

Although the cash prize is very enticing, students who wish to join must remember that the main goal of the contest is to provide a venue for them to let their voices be heard. Through their creativity, they will be able to do their part in fighting for the change that the country needs.

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September 29, 2010 at 10:47 PM Leave a comment


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