August 31, 2011 Press Statement of NPC President Jerry S. Yap


“NOLI ME EALA” is now being coined by the National Press Club of the Philippines as a new way of filibustering against public figures similarly minded as former Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) commissioner Mr. Noli Eala, now being accused of harassing a sportscaster. 

Literally, it means: “Don’t do to me what Mr. Noli Eala did to a journalist!”

It is indeed quite revolting for sports figures to harass sports writers or sportscasters, who, despite the unrewarding work these journalists do for the sports, they remain happy to stay on the sidelines to watch the show of persons of interest to the public and make reports about them.
            This as the Club reminds Mr. Noli Eala that he should be a man of law for being a lawyer although sanctioned by the Supreme Court for a morality issue. He should have known how important is the liberty of the press to the society, the country and the people in general; and to the basketball and other sports in particular.

            The NPC knows that Mr. Noli Eala cannot imagine a basketball championship without reporters or sports writers or television crewmen.  He certainly knows that without sports columnists and sports feature writers, basketball and other popular sports could have never been so storied to become legends in the eyes of the Filipinos watching on the sidelines, boob tubes or internet, Filipinos who coincidentally compose the biggest chunk of product consumers to give motives for the corporations to sponsor teams and events.

            San Miguel Beer, Purefoods, Smart, Red Bull, etc can never be popular as they are now without the interesting stories written by sports journalists who normally are happy enough to come out of the woodwork just to piece together into interesting myths all events in basketball and other sports.

            The NPC was saddened to read the complaint of Mr. Edmund “Snow” Badua, the main anchor of Teledyaryo Sports of NBN 4, in his August 25, 2011 letter addressed to Mr. Ramon S. Ang, president and chief operating officer of San Miguel Corporation.

            The NPC has sufficient reason not to doubt the assertions of Mr. Badua because he staked his reputation, integrity and credibility when he brought to the attention of SMC’s bigwig what he insisted was the act of harassment done on him by Mr. Eala at the time the sportscaster attended the post-championship celebration of Petron Blaze Boosters in Mandaluyong.

            Mr. Badua said that Mr. Eala told him this: Hindi ko nagugustuhan mga pinagsusulat mo ah. Gusto mo ng proof na talagang taga-SMC ako? Tara usap tayo sa likod ng stage.”

            In continuation, Mr. Badua said in his letter:

With his hand firmly holding mine as if I was a criminal who had just been arrested, I was literally dragged into the backstage. There, Mr. Eala inexplicably started uttering profanities and making threats on my person.

Mr. Eala repeatedly told me that he didn’t like the things I have been writing about him, particularly the ones insinuating that he is not employed by SMC or associated with the corporation. I instantly replied, Bakit ikaw ba ang tinutukoy ko? Pinangalanan ba kita? Raising his voice, Mr. Eala countered: Bakit kailangan mo pa ba akong pangalanan para malaman kong ako yun? Kung mumurahin ba kita ng putangina mo sa Twitter nang hindi kita binabanggit, ibig sabihin hindi na ikaw yun?

I answered him back saying: Teka muna, bakit ka nagmumura. At kung ikaw man yun bakit kailangan mo kong i-corner dito? Bakit kailangan mo kong i-confront dito sa backstage na walang tao. Media harassment iyan. Andito ko para mag cover ng event ng San Miguel. Inimbita ko para mag cover, hindi para makipag-debate o makipag-away sa iyo.

To which he uttered, ‘Hindi naman ako makikipag debate sa iyo, eh. Bibigyan kita ng leksyon. Patutunayan ko sa iyo na taga rito ako. At dito ako sa SMC nagta-trabaho!

            Without my knowledge, Mr. Eala deployed two (2) of his cohorts along the area and before I could walk away to prevent the situation from boiling over, one of them approached me and violently pushed me. This guy, who was later identified to me as Rico Meneses, shouted at me and said: Bakit mo sinisigawan si COMM? Bakit mo siya inaaway?

To which I replied: Ha? Ako pa ang mang-aaway? Nagpapaliwanag lang ako. Kaya nga papaalis na ko at bakit parang pinagtutulungan niyo na ako?

It was at this juncture that another cohort of Mr. Eala barged into picture and threatened me by saying: Teka muna, huwag ka munang umalis. Di ba sabi ko sa iyo makikita mo rito ang hinahanap mo kapag nagpunta ka? Ang yabang mo ah. Wala ka pala, eh. Gusto mo bang Makita ang hinahanap mo rito?’”

            Indeed, NOLI ME EALA!
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