By Joey Natividad
NAGA CITY (BicolToday.com/08-May-12) – The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) took a step forward in defending columnist Ramon “Mon” Tulfo’s actuation prior to the airport brawl with showbiz couples Raymart Santiago and Claudine Barretto on Sunday.
NUJP, speaking in behalf of member-journalists said in a statement, there was nothing wrong of Mon Tulfo’s taking pictures of Claudine Barretto’s berating an airline staff at the terminal of Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA3) on May 6.
The NUJP said Barretto and her husband Raymart Santiago are celebrities, and are considered public figures. Since “they were in a public place and were involved in a commotion, the incident became legitimate for coverage.”
In front of airport passengers and airline staff at the airport terminal, Tulfo and the showbiz couple with others were involved in a brawl after Tulfo caught the ire of actor Santiago when the columnist was taking cellphone photos of Barretto giving the airline staff a dressing down over a lost luggage.
According to Tulfo, Santiago was trying to grab his cellphone camera, and the altercation triggered the brawl.
“Tulfo was also right in not handing over his phone camera. No one has the right to forcibly take a person’s camera or phone, especially of a journalist documenting a public incident,” said NUJP.
The journalists organization maintained its opinion that whoever started the violence should be left to authorities to investigate and to file the appropriate charges on those found liable. [BicolToday.com]
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