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Radio broadcaster shot dead in Philippines the day after World Press Freedom Day

A radio broadcaster was shot dead in Bongao town, Tawi-Tawi province on 4 May 2014, a day after World Press Freedom Day. Police are still investigating the motive behind the killing.

Richard "DJ Troy" Nadjid was on his way home from a basketball game Sunday night when he was shot dead, according to Babylyn Kano-Omar, Nadjid's colleague. He was 35 years old.

No one witnessed the shooting, Kano-Omar said, but police found four empty bullet shells at the scene of the crime and speculate that at least two men on a motorcycle shot Nadjid.

Nadjid, a well-known disc jockey in their town, was station manager of dxNN 92.5 Powermix FM and hosted a morning news program for the station.

Senior Superintendent Rudelio Jocson said Nadjid was not known to be a hard-hitting radio broadcaster. He said he became friends with Nadjid when he was director of the Tawi-Tawi provincial police office.

The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines, in a statement condemning the killing, quoted Tawi-Tawi provincial police director Senior Superintendent Joselito Salido as saying that Nadjid was "just a disc jockey who played popular music over the FM radio station. He is not a journalist."

But Kano-Omar said that Nadjid had worked as a reporter for almost seven years for dxGD 675 AM before transferring to dxNN, eventually becoming a station manager in 2013, after losing his bid to become town councilor.

The Sahali family, a political family in the province, owned dxNN. Kano-Omar said that Nadjid volunteered with her to act as a witness in police inventories done immediately after drug bust operations. Philippine law mandates that at least one media practitioner act as witness in drug bust inventories. She said this is one angle the police are looking at as the motive behind the killing.

If his killing is proven to be work-related, Nadjid will be the 141 st  journalist/media worker killed in the line of duty since 1986, and the 23rd killed under the administration of President Benigno Aquino III.

A report from GMA News said Presidential Spokesperson Herminio Coloma Jr. had sent a text message to reporters saying, "We condemn the killing of Mr. Richard (Nadjid). We have already ordered the police to identify, arrest, and hold accountable, those involved with the crime."

The Center for Community Journalism and Development (CCJD), a media development organization, also condemned the killing saying, "CCJD joins other voices in calling for an end to the insidious and continuing attacks to silence the press. The irony of the latest killing should not be missed and should instead serve as a reminder that in this country where democracy and the rule of law are supposedly thriving, there is a need for continuing vigilance and resistance against the erosion of press freedom."

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