FOCAP Mounts 45th Anniversary Photo Exhibit
The Gallery, Greenbelt 5, Makati City
Secretary Del Lorenzana; Justice Leonen; Ombudsman Morales; former CHR chief Etta Rosales; UNESCO Philippine National Commission Secretary-General Lila Ramos-Shahani; former—members of the diplomatic corps who are present; Ms. Jamela Alindogan, outgoing president of FOCAP; Ms. Sara Gomez Armas, incoming president; friends from the international and local media; ladies and gentlemen: Magandang gabi po sa inyong lahat! [applause]
First of all, happy 45th anniversary to FOCAP! It is a great honor to have been invited to such a momentous occasion for your organization.
Through the years, FOCAP has been a bastion of truth in a world that constantly struggles through changing tides. During Martial Law, when the dictatorship sought to silence the media, the brave members of your organization held the line and pushed back no matter the cost.
The photographs that we will see in this exhibit capture your ability to tell the story of the Filipino people—those critical moments that shaped who we are and who we could be as a nation. That through every period of our history, our people have overcome hardship and have become stronger because of it.
But ultimately, what we celebrate today is FOCAP’s defiant courage over the years, manifesting each time you spoke truth to power and told the whole unadulterated truth. We desperately need you to be the most credible voice of truth in our generation, when our basic rights are constantly being threatened, when human lives are being disregarded, when our freedoms are under attack, and when disinformation has replaced honest and collaborative conversations. We need you to end the culture of hate, sensationalism and lies, and put our foot down and say “enough is enough.” We need you to level up the conversation and stand our ground, and redeem truth-telling in our time.
Journalism has always been about fighting to speak and write about the truth. As we look back on our journey, we are reminded that we are not alone in the good fight, despite the difficult times. That we should continue to soldier on together to do what is right, to speak what is right, no matter the cost.
So, congratulations to FOCAP on your 45th anniversary! Thank you for having me. Congratulations also on the opening of your exhibit! Know that you have, always, my support.
Magandang gabi pong muli sa inyong lahat! [applause]