Publisher of Bohol community paper shot in broad daylight

Antonio “Tony” Silagon, 73, publisher of the local tabloid Bohol Balita Daily News, was shot by two unidentified men on December 15 in Barangay Dao, Trinidad City, Bohol province.

According to the Bohol chapter of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP), Silagon was walking alone and had just left his residence when shot. The gunmen reportedly pumped four bullets into the victim, one of which hit Silagon in the nape and exited in the left side of his face. The suspects fled towards the grassy area of the road upon seeing Silagon fall on the pavement.

The victim’s live-in partner, Marites Estoria, said she heard the gunfire. When informed by their neighbor that Silagon was shot, she hurried to the crime scene and rushed Silagon to the Gov. Celestino Gallares Memorial Hospital. The victim was still alive but died in the hospital in the afternoon of the same day.

Silagon’s Bohol Balita Daily News is the only daily in Trinidad and is published in the vernacular.

Police authorities, however, remain clueless on the identities of the killers and motive of killing. Silagon was walking on his way to the bus terminal to take a ride to Loay town when the motor-riding suspects accosted him. According to the police report, one of suspects was a woman.

Silagon also served as chief executive officer of the Loay Community Multi-purpose Cooperative, which according to cooperative officers, was doing quite well and branching to at least seven towns. They said it was Silagon who was able to stabilize the cooperative after several years of struggling to stay afloat.

Silagon is survived by his wife, Arlinda, and five children.

NUJP-Bohol condemned the killing and, together with Silagon’s family, urged authorities to speed up the probe and bring the suspects to justice.


Rowena C. Paraan

NUJP-IFJ Media Safety Office


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