By Karol Ilagan

HE LASHES OUT at reporters and calls the false and misleading information that he dishes out as jokes or “traps.” Yet while his diatribes can be described as unbecoming of his office, President Rodrigo R. Duterte remains widely popular, enjoying consistently high trust ratings in surveys.

But public-relations practitioner Ron Jabal says that to understand why Duterte is winning the so-called information war requires going beyond the soundbites and personalities and looking into the motives and interests of both the source and interpreter of the message.

Speaking at a panel in the Democracy and Disinformation conference last week, Jabal said that journalists need to look at Duterte’s public appearances as a ritual or a performance. Duterte is not just a disseminator of information, he said, but a source of drama. This, according to Jabal, is how the President’s supporters interpret his message – that he is performing, not just providing information.

Organized by news organizations and universities, the two-day event held at the Ateneo de Manila University in Makati gathered over 40 media experts to discuss why “fake news” and other forms of disinformation threaten freedoms, and how people can fight back.

Jabal said that while shedding light on the truth through reporting and fact-checking is of course essential, the campaign that needed to be done is not only about communication but also behavioral in nature.

“Fake news, misinformation, disinformation, or even ‘malinformation’ could be a strategy,” he said. “So we need to look at it from that way.”

When viewed from a PR lens, Jabal said, what is happening indicates that disinformation might be part of a strategy because of a structure that seems to be followed. He said that this is why the media and other institutions need to look at the issue with the elements of a campaign in mind to understand why there has been so much support for Duterte.

Check out Jonathan Corpus Ong and Jason Vincent O. Cabañes’ study titled “Architects of Networked Disinformation: Behind the Scenes of Troll Accounts and Fake News Production in the Philippines,” which found that disinformation production is a professionalized enterprise in the country.

“We need to look at the source or the agent – who are speaking, who are producing this content,” Jabal said. “We need to be able look at it from the point of view of the message itself – how is the message being crafted?”

These need to be addressed because the messages and the images being developed use shared belief as a base. This goes back to Jabal’s point that understanding Duterte’s supporters – who they are and how they are interpreting his messages — is an important part of the equation as well.

Jabal noted that Duterte’s supporters, when they post or share information online, could be performing as well just like the president. This rests on his observation that every time people publish something on Facebook, they almost instantaneously check whether their friends are liking or sharing it. The tendency is to share because the idea is people believe in that information.

“We’re performing also for our followers, for those people who like us,” he said.

This could be a reason why the supposed strategy is winning because the information given is packaged and repackaged in a manner that appeals to the base of the base, Jabal said.

Hong Kong Baptist University journalism professor Cherian George, another speaker at the conference, meanwhile put forth another perspective. To be sure, the media being able reach out to the audience using the right communication tools and social media skills is important. But George said that this is not enough because the truth, in the current context, is a much harder sell than the lie.

“The truth is if you’re looking at the economic problems of any country, there are simply no easy answers,” he said. “How do you go out and tell the people, ‘Well, the truth is, looking at the state of the world, of our country, it is in fact not possible for any politician to guarantee you a job or a high salary’.”

The fact that sacrifices need to be made in order to ensure some basic decent living is a hard sell. Making empty promises, like how politicians do, meanwhile, is much easier to do.

For instance, with human rights, the easy sell is to tell people that they are first and foremost Filipino, Muslim, or Hindu, and that other people do not count, George said. In short, asking people to look at themselves in terms of their most obvious and salient identity is easy. It is harder to ask people to consider the obligation they owe to strangers simply because they are members of the human race.

The problem requires deep civic education, which is more than a job for the media. The solution cannot be captured in a clever tweet or soundbite.

George pointed out that this is why demagogues like Donald Trump go for the easy sell — not because they are ideologically attached to white nationalism for example, but because these are effective, easy political stances.

“If it was easy to promote democracy and human rights, Donald Trump would be doing, championing that,” he said. “He is not, because it is a hard sell.”

The often easy answer, George noted, is to blame it on the people “because it lets us off the hook.” The more challenging question is how the system let down people so badly that they are willing to overturn norms and rebel against expertise. This is a much harder question because media, academe, and other institutions across society end up pointing fingers at each other.

“We have failed the people over a long time such that they are willing to opt for easy but wrong answers.” George said.

Jabal, though, said that reporters can do more in presenting facts and data by using real-life experiences and doing more investigative reporting in the mainstream. Beyond content itself, the PR practitioner also emphasized the need to study how information is distributed. He finds a problem with Facebook giving users just one side of the story, as an effect of echo chambers and filter bubbles.

Social networking service Facebook uses an algorithm that provides content to users that it deems the user wants. This is based on user activity, when he or she engages with like-minded friends or screens out content that does not conform with his or her existing preferences. The result is a virtual bubble that reinforces the user’s biases, insulating him or her from opposing viewpoints.

George, however, sees a problem in looking at filter bubbles from the lens of social media seen as a new form of media. He said that the media must also look at it as a new form of conversation or social interaction. In truth, he said, people tend to interact socially with people they like, and with whom they share the same values.

“We don’t then think about what society should do to penetrate our conversations or gate-crash our party,” he said. “In a crowded, in a very intrusive environment, we have the power retreat into our spaces where we get to chat with people we care about, people we share our values, our religion.”

George said that while this reality offline is not alarming or wrong, it turns out to be a dilemma online. Rather than seeing it as a problem on Facebook, however, George said that journalists must ask whether they are doing enough to create media experiences where people get to confront other points of view. — PCIJ, February 2018

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GOT A DATE on Valentine’s Day? Or even, got time for friends in the next five nights?

Allow us say thank you and let’s celebrate the week together in fun but thoughtful conversation and interaction on press freedom, freedom of information, and democracy!

Starting tomorrow, Feb. 13, and until Saturday, Feb. 17, PCIJ will mount a Press Freedom Booth at the University of the Philippines Fair in Diliman, Quezon City.

PCIJ has organized this advocacy booth on the theme “Freedom for Media, Freedom for All” at the UP Fair for citizens and journalists from print, broadcast, and online media, and independent media organizations.

The UP Fair sponsored by the UP University Student Council will also showcase advocacy booths on Peace in Mindanao, Human Rights, Equality for All, and Democracy. The Fair will be mounted at the Sunken Garden in UP Diliman, Quezon City, 6 pm to 12 midnight, Feb. 13 to 17, 2018.

Across the five-day period, the Press Freedom Booth will feature these activities:

“Journalists and Citizens: Meet and Greet” and have conversations on press freedom, freedom of information, and democracy. They can also snap selfies and Facebook/Instagram stories that can be posted live from the fair grounds.

“Shout Out for Press Freedom” where UP Fair guests can write on a “shout-out wall” their thoughts about and support for press freedom. Prizes await the best shout-outs.

Every day, from 8 to 10 p.m., special events will be conducted at the Press Freedom booth:

Day 1: Face Paint for Press Freedom (Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2018). UP Fair guests can get a face paint or a glitter tattoo for free. The designs will be inspired by themes related to press freedom, FOI, and democracy.

Day 2: Cultural Night (Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018). Musicians, spoken-word artists, stand-up comics, journalists, and other artists have been invited to perform on Day 2, which also marks Valentine’s Day and Ash Wednesday.

Day 3: Photo Booth (Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018). Visitors of the booth can take photos with journalists and their friends while holding calls and statements relevant to press freedom, FOI, and democracy for free.

Day 4: Fact or Fake? Team Contest (Friday, Feb. 16, 2018). Two groups with five members each will compete per round. They will be asked to classify statements as factual or plain misinformation. There will be three levels per set — from easy to moderately difficult to truly difficult questions. The winning team’s members will get prizes.

Day 5: Tusok-tusok for Press Freedom (Saturday, Feb. 17, 2018). To end the weeklong event, booth visitors will be offered free fish balls, kwek-kwek, and other street food for a fellowship night with press freedom advocates and journalists.

Journalists, media agencies, and media organizations have been invited to participate and assist at the Press Freedom Booth. Photos taken at the photo booth and featured shout-outs will be posted on social media.

The hashtags for the PCIJ press freedom advocacy booth and activities will be:

#UPFair4PressFreedom
#FOInow
#PressFreedomPH

The PCIJ Innovation in Storytelling Project

 KIAN Delos Santos's dream was to become a policeman. (Illustration by Aldy C. Aguirre)

KIAN Delos Santos’s dream was to become a policeman. (Illustration by Aldy C. Aguirre)

THE FIRST PROJECT funded by The PCIJ Project for Innovation in Storytelling is a children’s book that is not just for children. Inspired by the story of 17-year-old Kian Loyd Delos Santos, who was killed last month by members of the Philippine National Police, this book is being released today onFacebook and a series ofInstagram posts.

The PCIJ Story Project was launched on August 15 this year to support collaborations between artists and journalists and encourage experiments in novel forms of telling stories in the news.

Si Kian, a story told in English and Tagalog, for both young and adult readers, was written by prize-winning children’s book author Weng Cahiles and illustrated by Aldy C. Aguirre, an artist known for the whimsical watercolors that accompany a number of well-loved children’s books.

Cahiles and Aguirre worked with Kimberly Dela Cruz, a journalist who did most of the research and reporting on which the book was based. Dela Cruz interviewed about 30 people and obtained documents from the police and the Public Attorney’s Office. She reported in Caloocan City soon after Kian was killed and also covered his wake and funeral.

Children’s books rarely deal with current events or with topics as dark as the killing of minors in the war on drugs. This project presented an opportunity to tell (or retell) Kian’s story in a new way, to audiences that may have been overwhelmed by—or inured to—the news. It is also an effort to reach out to younger readers.

This story and the accompanying artwork attempt to bring Kian to life as a 17-year-old, with hopes and dreams like so many others.

Check out Facebook to see the text and illustrations.

The PCIJ Story Project’s Instagram account will also start posting the illustrations starting today.

Those interested in print copies of the book should email storyproject@pcij.org.

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PCIJ FB Cover

THE PHILIPPINE CENTER FOR INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISM (PCIJ) announced today the launch of The PCIJ Story Project, a new initiative that will provide grants of P15,000 up to P75,000 to journalists and artists who work together to produce innovative stories in the public interest.

The PCIJ Story Project will support projects that document and expose abuse and wrongdoing in the following subject areas: human rights, the misuse of public funds, threats to free expression and press freedom, poverty and inequality, and religious, ethnic and sexual minorities.

The project will encourage journalists and artists to team up to tell stories in nontraditional formats. It will support stories intended for legacy news media as well as social media platforms, digital-only websites, and non-digital platforms that have traditionally not been used for journalistic production, such as film, the visual arts, theater, and music. Multiplatform storytelling is encouraged, but proposals for stories told in traditional print or broadcast formats will also be accepted. The project will provide funding to seed projects – for example to do a story treatment, rough cut, or a trailer for a documentary project in order to seek further funding.

PCIJ will continue to do data and investigative reporting in multimedia formats. The PCIJ Story Project is a special initiative intended to encourage new forms of storytelling.

The PCIJ Story Project will accept proposals for journalist-artist collaborative projects, including for short nonfiction films, photo essays, graphic novels, even spoken word as long as they are based on facts and are backed up by documentary or testimonial evidence. There is no requirement to publish or air on traditional media. Stories intended for YouTube, Instagram, Facebook or other social media platforms will be supported as long as they are accompanied by an ambitious and viable marketing, dissemination, and audience engagement strategy. In addition, they must be stories of significant public interest. They must also be based on documented facts and evidence.

Interested parties are required to submit a story proposal.

The deadline for the submission of proposals for the first round of funding is September 15, 2017.

For more information on The PCIJ Story Project please visit pcijstoryproject.org or email us at storyproject@pcij.org.

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The PCIJ Project for Innovation in Storytelling (The PCIJ Story Project for short) will provide grants, initially from P15,000 up to P75,000, for projects that document or expose abuse, negligence, or wrongdoing in the following subject areas:

• courts and criminal justice
• the use of public funds
• human rights
• media, free expression, press freedom, media ethics
• religious, ethnic, and sexual minorities
• poverty and inequality

The Story Project will encourage journalists and artists to team up to tell stories on these subject areas. It will provide support for journalistic projects, including video animation, documentary photography, and stories that combine text with image and sound. The PCIJ Story Project fund can also be used to seed projects – for example to do a story treatment, rough cut, or a trailer for a documentary project in order to seek further funding. It will support stories intended for legacy news media as well as social media platforms, digital-only websites, and non-digital platforms that have traditionally not been used for journalistic production, such as film, the visual arts, theater, and music. Multiplatform storytelling is encouraged, but proposals for stories told in traditional print or broadcast formats will also be accepted.

There are no set formats for final outputs. We will accept proposals for journalist-artist collaborative projects, including for short nonfiction films, photo essays, graphic novels, even spoken word as long as they are based on facts and are backed up by documentary or testimonial evidence. There is no requirement to publish or air on traditional media. We encourage projects that break out of traditional forms of storytelling. Stories intended for YouTube, Instagram, Facebook or other social media platforms will be supported as long as they are accompanied by an ambitious and viable marketing, dissemination, and audience engagement strategy. In addition, they must be stories of significant public interest.

Applying to The PCIJ Project for Innovation in Storytelling

The PCIJ will accept proposals from journalists as well as photographers, filmmakers, and artists who work in collaboration with journalists. To apply, those interested should complete a proposal that follows this format:

Name:
Address:
Cellphone:
Email:

Current employment, if any:
Links to (or copies of) previous work:
Title of Project:

Project thesis: In at most 300 words, explain the gist of your story – what is the abuse, negligence or wrongdoing you want to expose or document – and why it is in the public interest
Research/reporting methodology: Explain how you will document or prove abuse, negligence or wrongdoing on your chosen topic.
Previous work done by you or others on this topic: Explain who else has done work on this topic (including links to, or copies of, the work) and what new information, angle, or context you hope to add to what has already been out to the public.
Publication plan: Explain how you will present the findings of your research and reporting. Will your report be for a news organization? If so, which one? If not, how will you disseminate your story?
Social engagement plan: Explain how you will ensure maximum distribution and discussion of your project
Team members: If you are working in a team, name the team members, describe each one, and their respective roles
Budget: How will you use the funds?
Workplan: Present a week-by-week plan of work and what you hope to accomplish within a set timetable (say three months or six months). Set deliverables for the mid-point of the project and the end of the project.

Editorial Committee

Proposals to The PCIJ Project for Innovation in Storytelling will be evaluated by a committee of editors led by Sheila Coronel and Howie Severino. Those whose proposals are approved will be assigned to a mentor who will provide guidance to the project. Every project will be verified and fact-checked. They will also be subject to legal and editorial review by the PCIJ.

The criteria for evaluating proposals will include:
• Newness or freshness of story
• Depth and rigor of research and reporting required
• Potential for impact
• Potential for engaging audiences
• Innovativeness of storytelling
• Track record of individual or team making the proposal

Disbursement of Funds

30% upon approval of the project
50% at the midpoint of the project, and upon completion of agreed-upon deliverables
20% upon completion

Copyright and other Issues

The creators of the work will own the copyright, but PCIJ will have the right to link or include the work on a Facebook page or Web platform for The PCIJ Project for Innovation in Storytelling. No work funded by this Project can be released to the public without approval from the PCIJ. All outputs must credit The PCIJ Project for Innovation in Storytelling or #pcij #storyproject.

Deadlines, Inquiries, and Submission

Deadline for first round of proposals is September 15, 2017. Inquiries and proposals can be sent to storyproject@pcij.org.

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Text by Ed Lingao

Alex Tizon Photo

Photo from Ed Lingao’s Facebook account

He introduced himself as Alex, but in our naturally irreverent way, we’d already branded him “Lolo PX” or Imported Grandfather by the end of his first day at the PCIJ. It was a label he would only find out about much later, by which time it was a label hopelessly irreversible.

To break the ice, we asked him if he liked having a bottle or two after work. And yes, even during. And he cracked that grin that usually begins from the left side of his mouth until it takes over his face. Yes he did, and the world was fine.

So for the next few months in 2009, Alex Tizon would be a mentor and older brother of sorts for many of us at the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism. He was on a one-year fellowship with the PCIJ from the International Center for Journalists (ICFJ), and while he liked to say that he was here in the land of his birth in order to learn, in the end he gave away much more than he took.

Alex was a five year old child when his family migrated to the United States, yet he always looked back to this country for his roots. He lived his life fully as an American, even if many times, in his quest for his identity, he felt like he lived a life in exile. He would later write a book about it, Big Little Man: In search of My Asian Self, and Jaemark Tordecilla and I would later joke about how only Alex could write a book about Asian men and penis envy and turn it into a best-seller.

When he was here, Alex would speak wistfully of his mother’s hometown of Tarlac, or his desire to one day travel to faraway Cotabato where a grandparent originated. I remember during his first week in-country, and he had to go to the Immigration Bureau to fix some paperwork. I asked him if he wanted to apply for dual citizenship as well, and his eyes lit up like wildfire. The day ended with me taking a cellphone video of Alex swearing allegiance to the Philippines underneath a grimy staircase of the Bureau of Immigration. In looking for his roots, he also found his flag again.

He brought with him a quiet intensity that helped him work with PCIJ’s then Research Director, Rowena Carranza Paraan. Alex was officially seconded to Weng to work on a data project to map poverty in the Philippines. He traveled with Weng to some parts of the country tagged as the poorest provinces. This was where Alex was in his element, traveling with a backpack and talking to people. Even though he struggled a bit with the language, people could see how much he wanted to learn about them, how much he wanted to understand. This was what made Alex such a rarity – he was the philosopher-journalist who could write about the extraordinariness of ordinary people.

Midway through his fellowship here, the Maguindanao Massacre happened. Fifty-eight people, including 32 newsmen, were murdered and hurriedly buried in huge pits in Maguindanao province in the worst case of election-related violence in the country. We hurriedly put together a quick-response team to fly to the site, and Alex was chaffing at the bit, wanting to fly in too. But there was a problem. His sponsors, the ICFJ, had banned him from traveling to Mindanao because of the security situation there. The ban puzzled Alex. He was on a journalism fellowship, and this was the perfect time for him to be a journalist in the Philippines. He got on the phone with his sponsors in the US, and you could hear the voices rising and tempers flaring. In the end, Alex came back deflated and angry. The sponsors had just pulled the plug to make sure that Alex does not set foot near Maguindanao. He was being recalled home, his journalism fellowship cut short by his desire to do journalism.

This was all in 2009. He flew back to the US, where he finished his book, and started teaching journalism at his old alma mater at the University of Oregon. We kept in touch via Facebook, mostly with his and hellos and how are the kids. Then, last year, Alex wrote that he was coming back for some unfinished business.

He was flying back to the Philippines to meet his relatives from his mother’s side in Tarlac, and to bring home the ashes of a grandparent (If you don’t ask how he brought home the ashes, I won’t tell. Suffice it to say that he did it the way a lot of Pinoys probably would). And, finally, he was doing a story on the Maguindanao Massacre and its aftermath. So in July 2016, Alex finally flew to Maguindanao, to trace his roots, to write his story, and perhaps, also, to find some closure. In the end, the man we at first branded Lolo PX turned out to be more Filipino than many we know.

When you think about it, he didn’t have to do these things anymore. After 58 years of a life well-lived, with a loving wife and two children, and a Pulitzer Prize, he was fully an American. But he was also finally and fully a Filipino once again.

Over the weekend, we heard news that Alex had died in his sleep in Oregon. He was 58.

I found a quote from an old interview with him that best describes that fiery intensity, that thoughtful way he would hang his head, and that manner by which he cracks that grin:

“Read, read, read. Think, think, think. Write, write, write. Go into the dark places and write about them.”

Go into the dark places and write about them. If we journalists only remember that, then Alex would never ever write 30. – PCIJ, March 2017

(Note: Ed Lingao is a news anchor of TV5. He previously served as head of PCIJ’s multimedia desk.)

STATEMENT OF THE RIGHT TO KNOW, RIGHT NOW! COALITION

THE ISSUANCE on July 23, 2016 of Executive Order No. 2 on Freedom of Information drew support from the Right to Know, Right Now! Coalition as a signal of the commitment of the Duterte Administration to respect and promote the people’s right to access information in the Executive Branch.

The Coalition was hopeful that EO No. 2 (“Operationalizing In The Executive Branch The People’s Constitutional Right To Information And The State Policies To Full Public Disclosure And Transparency In The Public Service And Providing Guidelines Therefor”) will send a strong message for the Senate and the House of Representatives to finally ensure the swift passage of the FOI Law that could cover all the branches and agencies of the government.

Close to the deadline for all Executive offices to roll out their “People’s FOI Manuals”, in November 2016 the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) launched yet another ambitious undertaking — an eFOI Portal that would host access-to-information requests from citizens, and the corresponding action taken by state agencies on the same.

EO No. 2, the People’s FOI Manuals, and the eFOI Portal are transparency tools that the Duterte Administration have offered citizens to ease the process of accessing information vested with public interest.

But nine months after EO No. 2’s momentous birth, and four months after its full rollout, the Right to Know Coalition’s informed judgment is that the Duterte Adminisration’s work on the FOI front is far from done.

In truth, based on six parallel “FOI Practice” projects undertaken by our CSO members, an omnibus request for and analysis of the FOI Manuals of 22 Executive departments and offices, and a study of the curated requests posted on the eFOI Portal, the Right to Know. Right Now! Coalition finds that a mix of forward, backward, and side steps have defined the compliance by Executive offices with EO No. 2.

Given these findings, the Right to Know. Right Now! Coalition affirms that there is greater urgency for Congress to enact, without any further delay, the passage of the FOI Law.

The core value of any FOI initiative is how much it could effectively and efficiently assist and affirm the citizen’s right to access information, but also how far it could oblige and require state agencies and officials to disclose information. In both cases, or for both citizens and public officials, the process should be quick and easy, and the desired result, sunshine or full transparency.

Indeed, access and disclosure are two equal parts of the FOI equation. It is thus premature to claim victory for FOI, on acocunt of EO No. 2 alone, because the one, true treshhold that the state must hurdle is how far and how much it has nurtured a culture of openness and transparency in all its parts.

The Right to Know. Right Now! Coalition has taken steps to actually test compliance with EO No. 2 against this threshold, through multiple, parallel initiatives by our members.

Six “FOI Practice” projects of our CSO members during the first three months from its full rollout in November 2016 have yielded mixed results of slow to quick action by various agencies on requests for information.

The Coalition filed an omnibus request for copies of the People’s FOI Manuals of 22 Executive departments and offices but less than half responded positively, and the others said they did not have Manuals as yet. The “exceptions” enrolled in some of these Manuals have raised concern among us that some agencies would want to remain opaque than open.

Our analysis of data in the eFOI Portal that for now hosts 64 agencies, out of 503 requests posted online as of March 14, 2017, up to 183 requests had been denied, 166 granted, and 154 more “pending or for processing”.

On one hand, some offices failed to comply with the clear directive and deadline to provide an FOI Manual and identify the responsible officers in the FOI chain. Some others did not even acknowledge requests sent via email or fax, nor even answer phone calls. Too, there were agency FOI Manuals that enrolled additional grounds for denial that have no basis in the Constitution, the statutes or jurisprudence. It took some agencies weeks and months on end to respond to requests, or well beyond the 15 working days deadline that the laws and EO No. 2 had imposed.

On the other hand, there were also offices that took to heart compliance with the letter and spirit of EO No. 2. While they constitute only a minority of the agencies that had been approached by members of the Coalition, these offices deserve our highest commendation. They promptly and professionally acknowledged letter requests, answered queries, and responded to requests sans the need for multiple follow-ups.

One take-away from our FOI Practice projects stands out: If public officials and agencies mean to do it, appreciate and understand just how important it is to them as much as to citizens, FOI is a good, easy goal to achieve.

In gist, the Right to Know. Right Now! Coalition deems it too early for the Duterte Administration to claim its FOI project as a feather in its cap. It would be more propitious to say though that it has taken the first, major steps to lay the foundation for a regime of transparency through EO No. 2, the People’s FOI Manuals of executive offices, and its eFOI Portal.

Much work lies ahead for both the citizens and the government on the FOI front. A central common task that must be achieved promptly is the passage of the FOI Law. In this, the Senate and the House of Representatives must not falter and fail anymore than their predecessors in five prior Congresses did.

The Right to Know. Right Now! Coalition has waged a 15-year campaign to have the FOI Law passed and with his EO No. 2 as his signal move, President Rodrigo R. Duterte must now, in words as in deeds, push with vigor the passage of the FOI Law by his “super majority” in both legislative chambers.

As best we could and by the standards of transparency, accountability, and good governance, the Right to Know. Right Now! Coalition commits to assist the Executive branch improve its FOI mechanisms. This commitment rests, however, on our hope that the Duterte Administration will relentlessly pursue its FOI project across all Executive offices.

Just as important, the Right to Know. Right Now! Coaltion enjoins the citizens, CSOs, academe, the private sector, and all sectors to engage in FOI practice and join the campaign for the passage of an authentic FOI Law.

While full congratulations are not yet in order in the fight for FOI, we offer a partner’s pat on the back to public officials and civil servants in the Executive and Legislative branches who continue to labor tirelessly to ensure that we achieve big and small victories steadily and constantly in our shared journey to an authentic FOI regime.

THE RIGHT TO KNOW, RIGHT NOW! COALITION
17 March 2017

Reference:
Atty. Eirene Jhone E. Aguila, Co-Convenor
0919 999 4578

Ms. Malou Mangahas, Co-Convenor
2836030

Ms. Jenina Joy Chavez, Co-Convenor
0918 902 6716