Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, April 19) — Journalist Maria Ressa filed a complaint with the Office of the Ombudsman against Presidential Undersecretary for Communications Lorraine Badoy for tagging her red and calling her out on social media.
In a 29-page complaint, Ressa asked Ombudsman Samuel Martires to “bring formal charges against Respondent Badoy for conduct to the prejudice of the best interests of government, insubordination and misconduct.”
The Nobel Peace Prize laureate said Badoy, who is also a spokesperson for the Anti-Communist Task Force, called her an “enemy of the state” and called Rappler, the news site founded by Ressa, a Communist Party of the Philippines “ally” in his previous social media posts.
“Respondent Badoy’s actions constitute red bait: her constant posting on Facebook about my alleged alliance/affiliation with known communist groups such as the CPP, NPA and NDF, and that I am allegedly an ‘enemy of the people’ or a ‘spokesman for the enemies of the state’ are not only false but create a real threat to my life, safety and freedom,” Ressa said in her complaint.
The journalist also accused Badoy of making “malicious and defamatory” comments online. Badoy called Ressa in one of his Facebook posts a “bare-faced liar” and a “master b***s*****r”. In a separate post, the government official described Ressa as a “sociopath”.
“I seek to hold Respondent Badoy accountable for failing to uphold the highest standards of professionalism as well as observing decorum and decency which tarnishes the reputation of public service,” the complaint reads.
Several progressive groups, student leaders, teachers, activists, members of the religious sector and other concerned citizens have filed separate complaints against Badoy for red-marking.
Badoy said in a statement earlier that she remained unfazed by the complaints and that they were simply part of the propaganda against her.