June 4, 2023

Presidential Communications Operations Office Sec. Martin Andanar urged government agencies to allocate funds for advertisements to help media companies survive from the economic impact of the coronavirus disease-2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.

Andanar made the remark after receiving reports that some private media companies have started reducing manpower due to quarantine measures.

“Ipaglaban niyo ang advertising budget niyo. Allocate niyo and distribute equally to private media,” Andanar said in a meeting with heads of private media outfits in Baguio City on May 23.

Andanar, who has been making rounds in the countryside to meet with media organizations, said some media companies in the provinces have reduced the pay of their stringers by at least 50 percent.

He said the private media’s capability to find news and disseminate them has been affected due to economic reasons.

“‘Pag sarado ang negosyo, walang advertisement, walang pangkabuhayan ang media company. Kung walang pagkukunan ng revenue, walang pangpasweldo,” Andanar said.

He also encouraged the government media to help their private counterpart in disseminating news and information.

Andanar said the PCOO has been conducting virtual presser since March 16 to serve as a source of information on the government’s response against the Covid-19 pandemic that has infected over five million people worldwide.

During his meeting with media officials in Baguio City along with Asec. Marie Rafael, Andanar distributed relief packs for media through the Baguio Correspondents and Broadcasters Club and the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas-Baguio chapter.

BCBC president Aldwin Quitasol, a stringer for the Daily Tribune, said the club has undertaken various programs to help its more than 200 members aside from assistance they get government offices, including the PCOO.

The 62-year old BCBC set up a helpdesk in its temporary office at the Public Information Office at the City Hall to provide assistance to its members.

Andanar, along with Usec. Joel Egco and Asec. Ramon Cualoping, also met media officials in Dagupan City, Pangasinan. – PNA