One day before Ferdinand Marcos Jr. took office, the Philippine Financial Supervisory Authority ordered the closure of the investigative news portal Rappler owned by Nobel Peace Prize winner Maria Ressa.
Ressa confirmed this on Wednesday via Rappler.
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has confirmed its earlier decision to revoke Rappler Inc & Rappler Holdings Corporation's articles of incorporation.
An appeal will be lodged against the decision.
"Rappler faces government retaliation for his fearless reporting of abuses in the 'war on drugs,' Duterte and Marcos' use of disinformation on social media and a multitude of abusive actions over the past six years," said Phil Robertson of the human rights group Human Rights Watch (HRW) said the current action was "an attempt to silence Nobel Prize winner Maria Ressa and Rappler by hook or by crook".
At the first press conference after his election on May 9, Marcos repeatedly ignored questions from a journalist from Rappler.
Rappler was still online on Wednesday afternoon.
In the 2021 Reporters Without Borders World Index, the Philippines slipped two places to 138th place out of 180 countries.
Outgoing President Rodrigo Duterte said in his 2017 State of the Union address that Rappler was foreign-owned, a "fake news publisher" and a "tool" of the CIA.
Shortly thereafter, the SEC launched an investigation and revoked Rappler's license.
Philippine law prohibits media companies from attracting foreign investors and shareholders.
In 2021, the Nobel Peace Prize Committee awarded the prestigious prize to Ressa and Rappler for their work "to expose abuse of power, violence and growing authoritarianism in their home country, the Philippines".
"Ressa and Rappler have also documented how social media is used to spread fake news, harass opponents and manipulate public discourse," it said.
Ferdinand Marcos Jr. will be sworn in as the 17th President of the Philippines this Thursday.
He sees himself as the political heir to his father, whose dictatorship, which was characterized by torture, murder and corruption, he praised during the election campaign as the "golden age" of the Philippines.
The Marcos clan is known for taking action against critical media, human rights activists and journalists.Keywords: