Celso exhorts media to adhere to 5 Cs PDF Print E-mail
Sunday, 17 July 2011 15:49

Mayor Celso Lobregat Saturday night exhorted media practitioners in the city continue pursuing responsible press freedom as he underscored the need for them to also adhere to 5Cs, his hallmark or seal of governance in the remaining two years of his third term.

“Like the employees of City Hall, the media should always follow the 5Cs”, the mayor said in his keynote speech during the 30th Induction of the Zamboanga Press Club Inc. officers Saturday night.  The 5 Cs referred to were conscience, commitment, consistency, competence and courage.

He said: “Press freedom is subject to ethics that dictate you to make sure your articles contain factual data.  Do not publish inaccurate information, or if you must, at least make it clear that it is in doubt.  Never intentionally mislead your readers for in this day and age where public perception can be the biggest obstacle we have to hurdle — accurate, factual and balanced information should be dished out.”

The 5Cs, he said is only one way of maintaining responsible press freedom. Media practitioners, he said should have conscience for them to know and discern what is right, commitment and consistency for them to do right all the time not just sometimes or some of the time, competence for them to know how to do right and
courage so that they can distinguish what is right and popular and do what is always right.

Mayor Lobregat emphasized that the media’s basic responsibility is to inform and report the truth, to help strengthen and support democratic processes, to act as government watchdog, a gatekeeper and instrument to disseminate necessary information and as a reflection of cultural interests and trends. You are the chief purveyors of information and opinion about public affairs.

“Yours is the discipline of collecting, analyzing, verifying and presenting information regarding current events, trends, issues and people.  Your articles should be a product of careful analysis of credible facts supported by evidence.  If you must expose ill-doings, do it because it is the right thing to do and not because you have an axe to grind”, he said.

The mayor added: “The truth must be your only master, your prime motivation. You have the power to influence public opinion and, the greater that power is, the greater the urge to abuse it. Be careful not to use such power to further selfish interests, lest you lose your credibility. Never knowingly serve the public with fabricated, distorted or half-truths.”

The mayor was the keynote speaker during the 30th induction ceremony of the Zamboanga Press Club which was also attended by House Deputy Speaker Beng Climaco, Vice Mayor Cesar Iturralde, District II Cong. Erbie Fabian (represented by Edgar Baños), ARMM Assemblywoman Rajam Akbar, PNP-9 Director Elpidio de Asis, Task Force Basilan chief Col Alex Macadio, City Police OIC Director Col. Edwin de Ocampo and some members of the City Council.

The new set of ZPCI officers is headed by Phillip Abuy of RPN-DXXX. He took over the helm from his colleague Gerry Lacastesantos. — Sheila Covarrubias