Southern Metro chief sorry: I mistook GMA reporter as a threat

Rambo Talabong
Southern Metro chief sorry: I mistook GMA reporter as a threat
Asked repeatedly about the recording of him instructing another cop to delete Jun Veneracion's video, Brigadier General Nolasco Bathan only says, 'I don't know'

MANILA, Philippines – Brigadier General Nolasco Bathan, the embattled chief of the Southern Police District (SPD), apologized to GMA reporter Jun Veneracion on Friday, January 10, for snatching his phone during the Traslacion on Thursday.

“I would like to apologize for what happened at Ayala Bridge, where I confiscated the cellular phone of media Jun Veneracion,” said Bathan in a press briefing on Friday.

Bathan snatched Veneracion’s phone during the Traslacion and was recorded ordering a cop to delete the video that the broadcast journalist took of cops dragging a devotee to the ground. 

Bathan said he took Veneracion’s phone, “thinking he was someone who possessed threat during the procession.”

In the video, Bathan could be heard saying, “Burahin mo, burahin mo. Kuha ni Jun Veneracion. P*tangina nagku-kwan eh (Delete it, delete it! It’s Jun Veneracion’s video. Son of a bitch, he’s meddling).”

When asked about this recording of him ordering a cop to delete the video, he repeatedly said, “I don’t know.”

National Capital Region Police Office acting chief Brigadier General Debold Sinas announced that they had launched an investigation into the incident, but that he would not suspend him amid the probe. –

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Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers the House of Representatives and local governments for Rappler. Prior to this, he covered security and crime. He was named Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. In 2021, he was selected as a journalism fellow by the Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics.