Now that revelations of Pinoy Ako Blog articles “boosted” on Facebook using funds provided by Kris Aquino are a runaway train, it is worth looking back to the close of 2017, when Jover Laurio was awarded “Person of the Year” by the Philippine Daily Inquirer.
In 2017, a huge battle was fought by Filipino soldiers to retake Marawi City from Islamic terrorists who had holed themselves up there. The battle lasted from May through October at enormous cost in civilian and military lives. The battle also all but flattened the once bustling city.
Back then, even when Laurio was still perceived to be the saintly squeaky clean “hero” of free speech and dissent, it already came across as a bit bizarre that Laurio would win out for such an award over Filipino soldiers who fought a ferocious battle to which millions of Filipinos tuned into on TV and via the Net. This is not to mention that this highly-televised battle was made possible by equally courageous field reporters and their dedicated crews. Many other unsung ordinary citizens contributed to the war and relief effort.
That Laurio would be chosen over these people and her work (if one could even call it that) over the collective effort to resolve an emergency spanning almost half a year of horrific death and destruction surrounding Marawi City even then — and now, especially with the PABoostgate scandal as backdrop — comes across as a gross misallocation of public recognition.
We need to ask the Inquirer Editor: What the hell was that? It’s high time. It’s long-sleeved.