KORONADAL CITY (MindaNews/02 August)—A freelance photojournalist was shot dead Thursday night in front of his family in nearby General Santos City, police said.
Chief Supt. Charles Calima, Region 12 police director, instructed police operatives to conduct a deeper investigation into the killing of Mario Sy, 53, of Purok St. Cruz, Silway in Barangay Dadiangas West.
The victim was shot twice at around 7:40 p.m. by a still unidentified gunman in front of his wife and daughter inside their house, a statement from the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) said.
Sy was brought to a nearby hospital but was declared dead by physicians upon arrival.
Police investigators recovered two spent caliber .45 shells at the scene, NUJP said, adding that the motive for the killing remains unclear.
Sy contributes to several local papers in General Santos City, Sapol News among them.
John Paul Jubelag, managing editor of Mindanao Bulletin, said that Sy just came from a press conference involving educators in the outskirts of General Santos before the shooting incident.
Sapol News and Mindanao Bulletin are publications under the Mindanao Media Services owned by the Jubelag family.
Jubelag said that Sy has long been contributing photos to their publications.
“We are saddened by this incident,” he said, urging authorities to bring justice to the victim.
Jubelag added that Sy “has been very vocal against illegal activities in the city although the victim prefers not to publicize them.”
If proven to be work-related Sy would be the 158th media practitioner murdered in the country since 1986 and the 18th since President Benigno AquinoIII came to office in 2010, NUJP said. (MindaNews)