Filipino journalist wins 2018 Pulitzer Prize for international reporting

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A team of journalists from London-based news agency Reuters, including Manila-based Manuel “Manny” Mogato, won the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for international reporting.

Mogato, a veteran Filipino journalist who previously worked for Manila Chronicle before becoming a political and general news correspondent of Reuters in Manila, is the only second Philippines-based journalist to win the prestigious journalism award, after Carlos P. Romulo became the first non-American to be given the Pulitzer Prize in Correspondence in 1942.

A former president of the Foreign Correspondents Association of the Philippines (FOCAP), Mogato was a part of the team that reported on police killing squads in President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.

Reuters Editor-in-Chief Stephen J. Adler said journalists Clare Baldwin, Andrew R.C. Marshall and Manuel Mogato “demonstrated how police in the president’s ‘drug war’ have killed with impunity and consistently been shielded from prosecution."

Reuters said the team's coverage included a report that revealed how a police anti-drug squad on the outskirts of Manila had recorded an unusually high number of killings. Many members of the squad came from a distant place that was also Duterte’s hometown, where the campaign’s brutal methods originated during his time as mayor there, it said.

Aside from Romulo and Mogato, other Filipinos who grew up in the US won the Pulitzer Prize.

Antonio Vargas, a 27-year-old political reporter of the Washington Post, was a part of a group of reporters who won the prize for best breaking news reporting for the April 2007 coverage of Virginia Tech Massacre, where Korean student Seung-Hui Cho shot and killed 32 people before turning to himself. Vargas wrote two stories on the shooting incident.

Vargas, who was born in Antipolo, Rizal and grew up in Pasig, migrated to the United States when he was 12 years old. He went on to study in Mountain View High School in California and attended college on a scholarship at San Francisco State University.

Byron Acohido won it for best beat reporting on the aerospace industry in 1997; the late Alex Tizon for best investigative reporting on US housing program in 1997; and Cheryl Diaz Meyer for news photography category in 2004 for her coverage in Iraq.

17 April 2018

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