MANILA – Malacañang on Friday believed that international magazine Time Magazine made a “mistake” in recognizing Rappler’s chief executive officer Maria Ressa as one of the “most influential women of the past century.”
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo made the reaction after Ressa was honored by Time Magazine in its 100 Women of the Year special edition released in March.
Sought for comment, Panelo said: “You can be correct all the time, (but) mistakes happen. Maybe this is one of them.”
Panelo, nevertheless, said the Palace respects Time Magazine’s recognition of Ressa as one of the most influential women around the world.
“If that is the perception of those who measure her, eh ‘di wala tayong magagawa (we cannot do anything about it). Ganyan talaga (It happens). She’s a good journalist, as far as I am concerned, except that she cannot go anywhere beyond her biases,” he said.
Time Magazine, in its introduction of the 100 Women of the Year project, said it is “spotlighting influential women who were often overshadowed.”
Ressa was named “Person of the Year” in 2018, along with former Washington Post journalist Jamal Kashoggi, Reuters reporters Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Ho, and the newspaper Capital Gazette.
Ressa, who is facing several criminal charges before Philippine courts, has branded the cases as harassment for Rappler’s supposed critical reporting of Duterte and his government.
Malacañang has repeatedly denied Ressa’s allegations and called on the latter to stop using press freedom as an excuse for her arrest.
It has also insisted that press freedom is “very much” alive in the Philippines, as Duterte continues to allow Rappler to be critical of his administration. (PNA)