“Para maipaliwanag nang husto ang statement ng PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal) sa isyu kina Richard Gutierrez at Michael Flores” ang sagot ni Jo-Ann Maglipon sa tanong kung para saan ang presscon na ipinatawag kahapon ng tanghali.
Ikinuwento na rin nito ang pinagsimulan ng isyu na lumabas sa PEP at ang advise niya sa mga taga-PEP na ’wag munang i-upload ang story dahil kulang pa ang information at details at big star ang involved.
“Miscommunication” daw ang nangyari kaya, na-upload ang story, nag-react ang fans at ang ’di fans ni Richard at humaba na ang kuwento.
“I am apologizing for the inadvertent uploading of the story. I’m apologizing to the Gutierrez family, Michael Flores, Epi Quizon, PEP readers and most specially to Richard. It was very unfair to everybody.”
Saan nanggaling ang details na nagkaroon ng gulo between Richard and Michael sa birthday party ni Direk Mark Reyes sa Oceana Restaurant kamakailan?
“Like I said, I get information from my staff. We have a witness from inside the restaurant and one at the parking lot.
“Open-ended ang story na ito, the research was aborted dahil na-upload na ’di pa kumpleto ang details. I want to apologize in the lax of editorial procedure.”
Kung walang nangyari, bakit may lumabas na witnesses?
“Exactly! This is the beginning of the story.”
Imbento lang ba ang istoryang banggaan niya Richard at Michael?
“Hindi ko pa alam dahil hindi ko pa nakakausap lahat ng sinasabing tao na involved. Nag-deny si Leo Martinez na may nangyari at nag-deny din si Michael.
“Naunahan ng uploading na mali, kaya I apologize to all the people involved. I acknowledge our mistake of having prematurely uploading the article.”
Ire-retract ba nila ang story?
“The fact that we pulled out the story, ibig sabihin, I have doubts. Pero, hindi nag-iimbento ang PEP, kulang lang talaga ang information. It was full of holes.”
Is PEP still pursuing the story?
“Hindi pa masabi. Naudlot ang imbestigasyon kaya ’di ko masagot. Pero ’di nag-i-instigate ang PEP kung walang pinagsimulan. But at this time, I’m more inclined to let things come to us than pursuing it.”
Credible ba ang witnesses nila?
“Oo, dahil walang motibo para siraan nila ang sinuman.”
May plano ba silang ilabas ang two witnesses nila?
“Gusto n’yo bang dumugin sila?”
Alam ni Ms. Jo-Ann na may nag-aakalang tinakot siya at tinarayan ni Annabelle Rama, ina ni Richard, kaya nagpa-presscon at ikokorek ang lumabas sa PEP, heto ang kanyang pahayag.
“Sa experience ko sa kanya, she’s one of the best persons to talk to, diretso kaming nag-usap and I know where I stand.
“As far as I’m concerned, I’m not doing this because I was coerced. I will not be bullied into saying anything I don’t believe kahit may bantang demanda.”
Sa presscon, sinabi rin ni Ms. Jo-Ann na sa pag-uusap nila ni Annabelle, hindi na nito itutuloy ang demanda sa PEP at sa writer provided kinorek niya ang lumabas, pero after the presscon, ang sabi ng publicist ng mga Gutierrez na si Jun Lalin, hindi happy si Annabelle dahil hindi tuwirang sinabi na walang nangyaring away kina Richard at Michael at nag-apologize lang si Jo-Ann sa premature uploading ng story at walang ni-retract. Hindi pa tapos ang isyung ito kung ganu’n! (As of presstime, ang balita namin ay maghaharap at mag-uusap pa sina Jo-Ann at Tita Annabelle. Kung magiging maganda ang resulta ng ‘meeting’ nila, maaaring hindi na ituloy ng huli ang pagdedemanda. Kung sakali namang hindi magkasundo, sinabi ni Jo-Ann na handa silang harapin ang asunto. �” IFF)
Samantala, narito ang opisyal na pahayag ni Jo-Ann na ipinost sa mismong PEP site at binasa ni Boy Abunda sa Showbiz News Ngayon (SNN) nu’ng isang gabi: “This is a statement of clarification, correction, and apology.
“Yesterday, March 29, at a little past 4:15 p.m., the Philippine Entertainment Portal (PEP) uploaded a story on Richard Gutierrez and Michael Flores alleging that the two actors had a confrontation on March 28 at director Mark Reyes’s birthday celebration.
“The four-paragraph story ended by saying that PEP ‘at press time is still investigating the incident.’
“The fact is that a report did reach PEP about an incident that reportedly occurred at around 1 a.m. of March 29, allegedly involving Richard Gutierrez and Michael Flores.
“When I was told about this incident, I recognized that it was of interest to the public, and gave instructions to the staff to investigate further.
“At around 7:20 p.m., my attention was called to the story having been uploaded in the site, I had it pulled out immediately.
“I felt that, at that point, we had not exhausted our probe into the facts of the incident. While we were able to get in touch with Michael Flores, Epy Quizon, and Leo Martinez, who were all guests at the party, we had not as yet interviewed other personalities, particularly Richard Gutierrez. For this we apologize.
“To Richard Gutierrez, Michael Flores, and Epy Quizon who were named in the story, to PEP readers who may have been confused, and, again, to Richard Gutierrez whose side of the story we failed to get, our sincerest apologies.
“PEP will always maintain the best standards of web reportage, and, on the unhappy occasion that it fails to do so, will acknowledge its error.”