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Radio commentator threatened on Facebook

(CMFR/IFEX) - 25 May 2012 - A radio commentator and station manager in Bugasong, Antique received a death threat in his Facebook account last 18 May 2012. Bugasong, Antique is 412 kilometers south of Manila.

A certain Femia Amoyen sent Jose Allan Bartolo of radio station Hot FM 102.9 a private message saying, "Son of a bitch! You better watch your back. I can easily have you killed for P50, 000 [approximately USD 1,159])."

Bartolo told the Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility (CMFR) last 22 May 2012 that he was surprised when he read this threatening message when he checked his Facebook account at the Diosdado Macapagal International airport in Pampanga last 18 May 2012. Bartolo had just come from Singapore.

When Bartolo asked why she was threatening him, Amoyen replied, "You don't need to know. I will have you killed."

Bartolo, who is also a consultant for the Bugasong municipal government, asked his officemate Jessie Flores to track Amoyen. Flores told CMFR that he was able to talk to the caretaker of Bugasong Enterprises, where Amoyen works as a saleslady.

Flores told CMFR that the caretaker said that Amoyen usually allows other people to use her mobile phone to browse the Internet. "It's possible that one of the persons who borrowed her cellphone sent the threat," Flores said.

Bartolo was alarmed when he learned that Amoyen lives in the same area where retired Bugasong Police Station Chief Inspector Marciano Solano previously resided. He said whoever is behind the death threat may be connected with the retired police chief.

The commentator was at odds with Solano due to the former's commentaries implicating the latter in the pilfering of parts of a Sto. Niño (Holy Child) statue in a Bugasong church in 2005.

But Bartolo said he is not discounting the possibility that the death threat could also be connected to other issues he had commented on in his public affairs program, "Antique Online," Among them organized crime in the province, illegal drug transactions, and mining in the province, among others.

Bartolo told CMFR that he will be meeting with Amoyen to verify who really sent the death threat.

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