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Maria Ressa fires back at Jay Sonza for claiming that she is not a “Journalist” but a “Personal Assistant”

Ressa tagged Sonza’s remark as fake news.

Retired broadcaster Jay Sonza recently trended online after posting a supposed fact check on Maria Ressa’s previous profession before becoming a highly regarded journalist and CEO of Rappler.

In his post, he stated that Ressa was never a journalist in the years 1986 to 1996 but rather she was a PA (Personal Assistant) of Cheche Lazaro’s defunct program Probe.

“Maria Ressa was never a journalist or part of the immediate post-edsa (86-96) abs-cbn radio and television News, under TV News Director Larry Ng, TV News Manager Angelo Castro Jr., and Radio News & Public Affairs Director & TV Patrol Executive Producer Jay Sonza,” he stated.

He added, “She was a PA of the defunct Cheche Lazaro’s program.”

Maria Ressa did not let this pass and quickly condemned Sonza’s supposed revelation saying, “Alam niyo, nakakatawa na kayo. Pati ba yan, mali mali. Director and producer ako ng Probe nung time na iyon.”

She also countered the attempt to belittle PAs and shared that she is witness to a former PAs success as she said, “Ano ba kayo – minamata niyo ba ang PA? Ang dating PA ko sa CNN, senior international correspondent na siya.”

Netizens, journalists, and celebrities also sided with Ressa and slammed Sonza’s insensitive and false claims.

This was not the first time Jay Sonza attacked Maria Ressa. It can be recalled that in 2019 when Ressa was facing cases of cyberlibel and tax evasion, Sonza questioned her citizenship. He claimed that both her parents are Indonesians and she uses a US passport. Although Ressa clarified that she has dual citizenship and her parents are not at all Indonesian.

Later that same year, Sonza called Ressa “ugly” and “tiburcio” as the latter reported that the Philippines under the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte was worse than being in a war zone.

Jay Sonza is a well-known supporter of the Duterte administration, as shown by his constant attacks on those who seemingly criticize the government.

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