On May 3, World Press Freedom Day, two days after his release from hospital, Jose Miguel “Mike” Arroyo announced that he was dropping the 11 libel suits against 46 journalists that he had been filing since 2003. As if to demonstrate that contrary to his lawyer’s allegations, he indeed is a public figure, his wife’s press secretary read Arroyo’s statement.

Arroyo described his decision as “a gesture of peace.” But he also implied that he deserved “redress,” and declared that he was nevertheless withdrawing the libel suits “to pursue a more positive and constructive relationship with those who will accept my offer of a handshake.” His statement also suggested that it was God’s –and therefore his–“spirit of generosity” that had moved him to withdraw the suits. Continue reading