Andanar creates Philippine News Agency editorial board after blunders
MANILA, Philippines – After two glaring blunders recently by the Philippine News Agency (PNA), Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar created an editorial board to serve as "gatekeeper" against future errors.
"Andanar also announced that in order to avoid similar incidents in the future, he has formed a PNA Editorial Board to be led by him," reads a Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) press release sent on Monday, August 14.
The editorial board will have as its members Undersecretary Jose Joel Sy Egco (also Executive Director of the Presidential Task Force on Violence Against Media Workers), PCOO Assistant Secretary Joseph Lawrence Garcia, journalist and PCOO consultant Albert Gamboa, PNA chief Virginia Arcilla-Agtay, and PNA Acting Executive Editor Louie Morente.
"The Board will act as the last gatekeeper. All stories must pass under its scrutiny," said Andanar.
Andanar began his investigation into the two recent gaffes that sparked derision and anger among netizens – an article that used the Dole Philippines logo to refer to the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and the repost of a Xinhua opinion piece that called the Hague ruling an "ill-founded award."
The PCOO chief summoned the PNA editorial staff, including Agtay, "to determine the culpability of some personnel who may have been remiss in their duties."
Show-cause orders were issued to 3 personnel thought to be involved in the two controversial posts, according to Andanar.
During his meeting with them, Andanar told PNA reporters and editors of the "highest standards of professionalism" expected by the public from the PNA, a government-run news agency.
He stressed that the PCOO will do "whatever is necessary" to improve PNA services.
Last Saturday, August 12, Andanar also warned he would send PNA editors to Basilan or Jolo if they could not adequately explain what brought about the errors.
On Friday night, August 11, the PNA ran a report on DOLE but used a photo showing the logo of Dole – the company that manufactures canned pineapple. (READ: Philippine News Agency's story on labor dep't uses Dole pineapple logo)
Earlier this month, the PNA also carried an opinion piece sourced from Chinese state-run news agency Xinhua which called the Philippines' victory over China in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea) an "ill-founded award." – Rappler.com