Philippine radio station erred on threat of 'excommunication' for President Aquino
October 05, 2010
A Catholic radio station in the Philippines has admitted that it improperly transcribed an interview with the president of the country’s episcopal conference, creating the impression that the bishop was threatening the excommunication of President Benigno Aquino.
Radio Veritas apologized for a serious transcription error in an interview with Bishop Nereo Odchimar, who was speaking about the possibility that the Filipino bishops might take disciplinary action because of his support for an aggressive family-planning program.
Questioned whether excommunication might be considered, Bishop Odchimar answered: “That is a possibility. I don’t see right now that it is a proximate possibility.” The transcription of the interview provided by Radio Veritas to news outlets omitted the crucial words “I don’t see,” thereby giving readers the understanding that the bishop felt excommunication was likely. Bishop Odchimar later issued a clarification, stressing that excommunication was only a theoretical possibility at the moment.
[A September 30 CWN headline story on Bishop Odchimar's statement, which was based on later reports of the bishop's actual words, was essentially accurate, saying that excommunication was a possibility that was not currently under discussion.]
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