‘Walang bastos’: DZRH exec Cesar Chavez thanks Leni supporters for flagging report

November 2, 2021 - 1:33 PM
Logo of DZRH News and a photo of a pink caravan event for Leni Robredo's presidential bid (Facebook, The STAR / Andy Zapata Jr.)

The station manager of DZRH thanked Vice President Leni Robredo‘s supporters for not being rude when they called him out over broadcast of an incorrect report about their latest caravan in Northern Samar.

DZRH previously ran a report that Robredo’s supporters in the province allegedly offered cash to join their movement to support her presidential bid.

The organizers were also accused of pocketing the money instead of giving it to the participants.

The Northern Samar chapter of the Leni for President Movement immediately called this report out.

Their statement was also shared by Robredo’s spokesperson lawyer Barry Gutierrez on social media on Monday, November 1.

Queenie Tagros, the group’s designated spokesperson, denied that bribery was involved in their activities.

Tagros also stressed that the motorcade was voluntary.

“No one was paid and no one participated because there was payment promised or given. There was no funding for the said activity either,” Tagros said.

“The caravan was purely voluntary,” she added.

Gutierrez also lauded the supporters for their vigilance and said that he expected more from the members of the press.

“As support for VP Leni grows, we know that the hired trolls of other candidates will work overtime to spread lies and fake news. But we expect a bit more from those in the media profession. Salamat at mabuhay #Kakampink volunteers!” he wrote.

‘Walang bastos’

Cesar Chavez, Manila Broadcasting Company vice president and DZRH station manager, also thanked Robredo’s supporters for not being rude when they called DZRH News out for their lapse in editorial judgment.

“Marami pong salamat sa mga supporter ni VP @lenirobredo. Maraming tumuligsa sa aming maling balita, ngunit wala akong nakitang nambastos,” he said.

“Manatiling mapagmatyag. Responsabilidad natin itong lahat,” he added.

Some of Robredo’s supporters on Twitter later acknowledged Chavez’ perception of them.

“Kasi hindi kami yung bastos,” forensic scientist Raquel Fortun said.

Others cheered DZRH and Chavez for their immediate response on the false news aired.

“Respeto para kay Sir @sarchavez at sa buong DZRH team, at sa mga naging mapagmatiyag na hindi nambastos. (smile emoji) Patuloy po!” one user said.

“Salamat Cesar! May DZRH continue to be warriors for truth and not the other way around,” another user wrote.

Robredo herself thanked Chavez for addressing the concerns of her supporters.

“Maraming salamat sa agarang pag responde sa reklamo ng ating supporters,” she said. 

DZRH’s apology 

In a separate Facebook post, which was shared on DZRH’s Facebook page, Chavez also apologized to Robredo and her supporters on Monday.

He confirmed that the reporter who ran the story did not talk to any volunteer or person involved in the event.

The reporter has been suspended amid the radio station’s ongoing internal probe.

“Ibig sabihin, mismong ang reporter namin ay walang nakausap kahit isang nilalang sa Northern Samar na nagsabi may naganap na bayaran o mayroong hindi nabayaran sa event na iyon,” Chavez said.

“Dahil dito, suspended muna sa pagbabalita ang nasabing reporter sa aming himpilan habang isinasagawa pa ang karagdagang pagsisiyasat,” he added.

The veteran radio host also stressed that DZRH News will not condone this error.

“Hindi namin kinokonsente ito. Hindi namin policy ito. Ngunit tinatanggap po namin ang pananagutan sa pagkakamaling ito, kasunod ng aming pagtiyak sa publiko na higit pa naming pagsisikapan ang isang balanced, fair and responsible reporting sa aming multimedia platforms,” he said.

DZRH News also later issued a separate statement where the team apologized for broadcasting unverified content on their station.

“We at DZRH would like to extend our most sincere apologies for broadcasting unverified content during one of our afternoon newscasts,” it said.

“As an information content provider over traditional and social media amidst these trying times, we recognize the importance of our duty to deliver the latest news in a manner that meets the highest journalistic standards, congruent with established social and cultural norms,” the station added.