Mayor Rodrigo Duterte once promised during a chance interview that he will boycott the national media from covering his various activities, so journalists learned their lessons in a hard way. Some journalists and members of the media were barred from covering the meeting between Liberal Party and PDP-Laban in Davao City.
The camp of Pres. Duterte were not allowed to enter the presidential guesthouse compound in Barangay Panacan where Duterte met with outgoing House Speaker Feliciao Belmonte Jr., and other members of the Liberal Party together with some officials from the ruling PDP-Laban, the political party of the incoming president.
In an interview with the media, Mayor Rody Duterte’s spokesperson, Atty. Salvador Panelo was quoted a saying “He’s just being consistent.” He also added that “He did not call a press conference (anyway). Why would you be allowed to go inside?” he said.
Atty. Panelo also noted that the meeting between Liberal Party officials and Mayor Duterte is not a press conference so the media were not invited. He was quoted as saying “There will be no more press conferences. Go blame your flippant colleagues who were asking wrong questions and attributing wrong quotes.”
During the event in Davao City, security was tight outside Mayor Rody Duterte’s temporary office, now more popularly known as Malacañang of the South, which is located inside the regional office of the Department of Public Works and Highways. Pres. Rody Duterte has been holding meetings and press briefings at the guesthouse for the past few days since his proclamation as winner of the 2016 presidential election.
The journalists and media men were left outside of the guesthouse and waited for at least six hours but they were surprised when the situation has changed drastically, only the crew of the state-owned People’s Television Network 4 (PTV4) were allowed entry by the members of the Presidential Security Group and private security personnel manning the gate at the guesthouse.
Atty. Panelo the spokesperson of Duterte also confirmed that the outgoing Davao City Mayor will keep his words to boycott the national media for the rest of his term, unless he changes his mind. He also noted that the media should not be taken as a restriction on the movement of the media because PTV 4 would be releasing the video footage of Mayor Duterte’s official functions.