Racketeers at Iloilo City Hall disguised this time as members of the Dinagyang Committee (Iloilo Dinagyang Foundation, Inc., an NGO kuno) already sold 500 “press IDs” to hundreds of journalist- wannabees at P500 apiece seeking access to the competitive performances of contestants. The group have more than 600 press IDs for sale in their shelf.
This pack’s definition of “journalist” or “photojournalist” defies imagination because they include bloggers and gossips in the internet who are incapable of writing full length report or opinion pieces, much less captions of their own photos. They are untrained, uneducated and unexperienced in journalism. Their only qualification is their ability to cough up P500 per ticket.
These City Hall racketeers are plying their trade at the expense of others. For example, Iloilo Gov. Arthur D. Defensor, Sr., was jolted from his seat after he was informed that City Hall already assigned “87 journalists” to Stage 2 which the Iloilo provincial government erected for its own people and guests.
The stage constructed by Capitol is for free and its tickets, much less, press IDs, are gratis et amore or “wala ginabaligya”. Capitol reserves only 20 pieces of press IDs for reporters covering the provincial beat.
When City Hall informed him that it has “assigned” 87 “journalists” to “cover” the performances at Stage 2, Defensor flatly rejected it.
“I won’t honor the press IDs that you issued,” he said. “During my state-of-the-province-address (SOPA), only 40 reporters representing all media outlets, covered the event. How come this time we have more than 80? Where do these so-journalists come from?”
The instant journalists wanted to return their tickets and get back their money but, sorry, no-return-no-exchange was the answer to them by the racketeers.
Wannakosey dyan. City Hall pa! Say mo, Mayor Jed? Raul Gonzalez dies, dies laughing.