Rappler Chief Executive Maria Ressa has been chosen to be one of TIME Magazine’s 2018 Person of the Year along with other international journalists “for taking great risks in pursuit of greater truths”.
Maria Ressa included in TIME Magazine’s ‘The Guardians and the War on Truth’
Despite the abundant number of journalists who chose to keep their mouth zipped during President Duterte’s administration, Maria Ressa was one of the brave journalists who chose to expose the truth in spite of serious life threats she may receive.
For this, TIME Magazine named Ressa as one of the ‘Person of the Year’ for fiercely withstanding multiple accusations and politics thrown at her. She has also been lauded for always delivering the truth regardless of its serious consequences.
TIME Magazine featured the violent drug war and extrajudicial killings of President Duterte that Rappler reported. Apart from this, TIME also narrated how Duterte’s administration refused to accredit Rappler journalists from covering Malacañang events and charged the news site with tax fraud that would send Maria Ressa to prison for 10 years.
The American publication featured other journalists who were ‘targeted for their work.’ Journalists such as Jamal Khashoggi who was murdered in October; the staff of Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Maryland where five people were shot and killed; Reuters journalists Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo who were sentenced to serve seven years in prison for investigating a massacre of Rohingya Muslims.
“By featuring four distinct covers, we were able to amplify different voices from around the world,” TIME creative director D.W. Pine stated. “In the process of just doing their jobs, our cover subjects faced dangerous threats in what continues to be a global war on the truth.”
Another highlight in TIME’s 2018 Person of the Year cover is that the person who photographed these featured people is a photojournalist who was also imprisoned and blacklisted for covering political upheavals around the world.
In a world where people are silenced, democracy is threatened, and the media is labeled as the enemy, there are still some people who soldier on to fight for what’s right and what the people deserve. No matter how many times we are restrained, in the end, what’s right will prevail.