Philippine security forces have long employed red-tagging in its decades-long campaign against the New People's Army, accusing activists of directly supporting the communist armed group. It's a dangerous campaign. In many occasions, redtagging was followed by arrests or, worse, killings. In the past, the victims were usually members of progressive groups. Lately, more journalists have found themselves under threat. In this video, PCIJ multimedia reporter Cherry Salazar documented the shrinking space for press freedom in the Philippines.
A total of 176 media workers have been killed in the Philippines since democracy was restored in 1986. Out of this number, only 19 or 11% resulted in convictions. Others flounder in courts because of insufficient evidence; failure to identify, locate, or arrest suspects; and lack of witnesses. Eventually, families lose interest in pursuing them.
Voter registration for the May 2022 elections hit some snags as the Covid-19 pandemic hit in 2020. Registration was suspended several times. While voter registration was recorded at an all-time high for the recent elections, it’s difficult to assess the turnout for PDLs and compare it with previous years’ data because Comelec has no final tally yet for vulnerable sectors.