DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/02 November) — ABS-CBN TV reporter Trini Velasco received a death threat via text message a day after the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections in Marawi City which the network covered, the national Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) today said in a statement.
NUJP said Velasco, of ABS-CBN Cagayan de Oro City, received the message Oct. 26.
The ABS-CBN CDO crew had left Marawi in the afternoon of Oct.25, it added.
“The text message warned the ABS-CBN crew, especially those from Iligan City and Manila who had remained, to get out of Marawi City or else they would be killed,” the statement said.
Velasco immediately called up her colleagues from Iligan and Manila who had remained in Marawi. They got out of the city with the help of the Philippine Army.
Marawi is the capital city of Lanao del Sur where elections are hotly contested. At the height of the elections, a riot ensued in one of the polling centers when unidentified men tried to grab the ballot boxes.
The commotion resulted in an ABS-CBN cameraman’s camera battery and light being damaged. It is unknown if the cameraman himself was unhurt, the NUJP said. (MindaNews)