Monday, January 4, 2010

Maguindanao massacre DVDs in Quiapo seized

MANILA, Philippines -- Members of the Optical Media Board (OMB) on Monday swooped down on vendors in Quiapo, Manila selling digital video discs (DVDs) of the Maguindanao massacre.

OMB chairman Ronnie Ricketts said they immediately conducted the raid after receiving reports that the DVDs labeled “Maguindanao Massacre Live” were being sold in Metro Manila.

The DVDs contain footages of the crime scene in Maguindanao shortly after the massacre.

Also present during the raid were members of the National Press Club (NPC), who admonished DVD vendors for making money out of the ordeal of their fellow journalists.

"Adding insult to injury ito," said NPC President Benny Antiporda.

Earlier, relatives of the 57 civilians murdered in Maguindanao last November 23 protested the proliferation of video discs showing footages taken shortly after the massacre.

The Heirs of 11/23 Maguindanao Heroes, an organization comprising the families of the massacre victims, cried foul over the discs, saying these will cause more pain and trauma to the relatives, particularly the children, who will be reminded over and over of their parents’ horrible fates.

“They should respect us (victims’ families), particularly our children who are still in trauma because of the incident. If the children watch the DVDs, especially the little ones, they will be more traumatized,” the group’s vice-chairman Police Officer 1 Eliver Cablitas told The STAR.

Cablitas’ wife, Maritess, was one of the journalists brutally killed in the election-related massacre.

The families appealed to the OMB to try to stop the production of the discs and confiscate copies sold in different key cities of the country.

The group also appealed to the media to stop promoting the “showing” of “Maguindanao Massacre 11/23/09” by saying where and how the public can obtain the discs.

“Be responsible. If you want to write something, make it worthy. Don’t be an avenue of those people who made those DVDs to promote their illegal goods because it does not help the situation. Please stop convincing the families to buy a copy of it. Do not make us think that you are also profiting from the discs,” Cablitas said. With reports from The Philippine Star and Anthony Taberna, ABS-CBN News

as of 01/04/2010 5:49 PM