Radio network orders drug testing for its workers following arrest of volunteer reporter

Mar. 26, 2018

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – Following the arrest of a radio reporter for alleged possession of “shabu” (crystal meth), the management of Radyo Bandera Network (RBN) has ordered all its stations and affiliates to ensure that none of its personnel are involved in illegal drugs or other criminal activities.

In a statement he posted on Facebook on Monday, RBN president and chief executive officer Elgin Robert Damasco has mandated all radio station employees, including volunteer reporters, under the network to undergo drug test and to require applicants to submit all the necessary certifications from the barangay, police and Phil. Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) to the management.

Damasco’s statement was in reaction to the arrest of Lodymer Jagos, 29, a resident of Barangay Tagpangi here, by a joint police and PDEA buy-bust operation in Barangay Carmen on Sunday evening.

Taken from Jagos were sachets of white crystalline substance believed to be shabu.

Jagos denied the accusation as he maintained that his name was just dragged into the drug issue.

Police said they had conducted surveillance on Jagos for the past two weeks.

In the statement, Damasco said the RBN management was “deeply saddened by the involvement of one of its volunteer reporters in Cagayan de Oro who was allegedly caught by our authorities in possession of illegal drugs.”

Damasco said Jagos was a volunteer reporter of 103.9 Marian Radio, an RBN affiliate station based in this city.

“We would like to clarify that the act committed by Jagos was his personal activity and is not connected in any way with the radio station, the management and the network,” he added.

In an interview, Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas (KBP) chapter president Tito Monterde said Jagos is not their member and that radio stations should not have allowed non-KBP members to work as reporters or commentators.

In a separate statement, the Cagayan de Oro Press Club (COPC) also denied that Jagos is a member of the media organization.

“The COPC condemns any illegal act perpetrated by members of the press. As purveyors of truth, justice and peace, we the media community strictly adhere to what is right and just in the exercise of our profession,” said COPC president Ruffy Magbanua.

Meanwhile, city police spokesperson Supt. Mardy Hortillosa said law enforcers are conducting follow-up operation in the hopes of capturing Jagos’ suppliers. (

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