Hakon Mosvold Larsen/AP
HONOLULU — Filipino journalist and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Maria Ressa announced in a speech in Hawaii on Tuesday that the Philippine government was upholding an earlier order to shut down Rappler, the news site she co-founded, which acquired notoriety for reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s bloody crackdown on illegal drugs.
The Philippines Securities and Exchange Commission upheld its earlier decision to revoke Rappler’s certificates of incorporation, Ressa said during a speech at the East-West Center in Honolulu.
“Part of the reason I didn’t get much sleep last night is that we basically got a stop order,” Ressa told the audience.
Last year, Ressa became the first Filipina and she and Russian Dmitry Muratov became the first working journalists in over 80 years to win the Nobel Peace Prize.
She was one of the guest speakers at this week’s East-West Center International Media Conference.
The order is dated June 28 and reaffirms the earlier decision to revoke the certificates of incorporation of Rappler Inc. and Rappler Holdings Corp., Rappler said in a statement. “We have the right to appeal this decision and we will, especially since the procedure was very irregular,” the statement said.
“We’re not closing,” Ressa said. “Well, I’m not supposed to say that.”
No announcement regarding the decision appeared on the Philippines Securities and Exchange website until after business hours in the Philippines, where it was already Wednesday.
The AP was unable to immediately reach Ressa in Honolulu.
She co-founded Rappler in 2012. The website is one of several news outlets deemed critical of Duterte’s policies.
Since taking office in 2016, Duterte has openly lambasted journalists who write unfavorable stories about him. He has particularly bristled at critical coverage of his anti-drug campaign, which has killed thousands of mostly poor suspects and drawn international condemnation.
President-elect Ferdinand Marcos Jr. and Vice President-elect Sara Duterte — Duterte’s daughter — take office on Thursday after winning landslide victories in last month’s election.
Ressa was found guilty of defamation and has remained free on bail while the case is on appeal.
The Philippines Securities and Exchange Commission revoked Rappler’s license for what it found to be a violation of the ban on foreign media ownership and control.