ABS-CBN’s ‘Bandila’ Apologizes For Wrong Flesh-Eating Bacteria ReportWhat a week it was for ABS-CBN’s late-night newscast ‘Bandila’! But who else can it blame but itself? Four days after the airing of its very misleading and irresponsible report about what it referred to as ‘flesh-eating bacteria’ cases in Pangasinan, the news program finally aired its apology for the blunder on Thursday night, February 27.
During the newscast that day, Bandila released its official statement regarding the controversy. It was the first time for the program to directly say sorry about its erroneous and inaccurate report. It can be recalled that on Tuesday, February 25, it simply said it did not mean to scare people over the wrong information.
The wrong reportage was aired on Monday, February 24. It instantly created a stir because it claimed that a ‘mysterious skin disease’ is slowly spreading in Pangasinan.
Criticisms from netizens
Within that news report, reporter Jasmin Romero was even shown wearing blue lab gown, gloves, and face mask while going around the households of the two different patients. Many observers think that just in this part, it was clear that the report was trying to create panic among viewers. That, to some people, is the height of sensationalism on media reporting.
The following day after the report, government health officials in the province immediately made clarifications about the wrong information. They immediately called on ABS-CBN to be responsible enough to do proper research and verifications of facts before releasing sensationalized news reports.
As expected, the social media became an active venue for criticizing ABS-CBN and Bandila. Some netizens even created a campaign on Facebook. It is dubbed as ‘ABS-CBN Should Apologize to the People of Pangasinan.’ They may have succeeded in putting pressure to the Kapamilya network to do the right thing.
On its apology, Bandila reiterated that it did not mean to create a panic or scare when it aired that information. The news program said it is apologizing for the error.
It even disclosed that the incident was brought up to the Office of the Network Ombudsman of ABS-CBN. That agency is supposed to make a comprehensive probe about that report. The apology statement even emphasized that ABS-CBN will impose sanctions when and if necessary to the erring personnel.