‘Galawang troll’: Robredo, Hontiveros decry false news, online threats anew

August 5, 2020 - 1:40 PM
2025
This composite photo shows Vice President Leni Robredo attending the Media Launch of Istorya Ng Pagasa Film Festival 2020 in Nov. 2019 and Sen. Risa Hontiveros during a Senate inquiry last February. (Facebook/Leni Robredo; Facebook/Risa Hontiveros)

Vice President Leni Robredo and Sen. Risa Hontiveros once again criticized alleged trolls spreading false news and hurling threats against them online.

Robredo disowned several Facebook posts about the mandated motorcycle barrier with quotes falsely attributed to her.

“Actually, against din ako sa barrier na yan sa mga motorsiklo. Siguro ma-i-advice ko nalang, dapat siguro nakatalikod yung angkas para hindi na kailangan ng barrier na yan,” the false quote cards read.

Robredo stressed that she never stated these remarks about the new backriding policy wherein a tall barrier is required for backriding in areas previously covered by the general community quarantine. This directive also earlier earned some criticisms from motorists.

Mega Manila reverted to the stricter modified enhanced community quarantine from August 4 to 18.

“FAKE QUOTE (na naman!) | Wala pong katotohanan ang ipinakakalat na quote diumano ni VP Leni, ukol sa motorcycle barrier requirement na ipinatutupad ng pamahalaan,” Robredo wrote on Facebook last Monday.

“Muli, malinaw na isa na naman itong pagtatangka na manlinlang at manira—bahagi ng walang tigil na kampanya ng kasinungalingan laban sa Bise Presidente,” she added.

[A] FAKE QUOTE (na naman!) | Wala pong katotohanan ang ipinakakalat na quote diumano ni VP Leni, ukol sa motorcycle…

Posted by VP Leni Robredo on Monday, August 3, 2020

 

Robredo also informed the public on Twitter about these posts, saying: “Fake quote pa more!! No, I never said this. Galawang troll nga naman.”

She then encouraged the public to be more vigilant and discerning when consuming social media posts and report those spreading false information amid the global health crisis.

“Patuloy po nating paalala sa publiko: maging mapagmatyag at mapanuri sa mga nababasa, napapanood, o naririnig sa social media,” Robredo said.

“I-report ang mga nagpapakalat ng disinformation, lalo na iyong mga naglalayong manira sa gitna ng mahalagang trabahong dapat gampanan sa panahon ng krisis,” she added.

The vice president had been one of the main targets of fake and malicious posts shared by supporters of the Duterte administration since 2016.

Threats and false information

Hontiveros, who has recently been another subject of disinformation due to her critical views, responded to an online threat and a false news about her on Facebook and Twitter on Tuesday.

She initially responded to a tweet of Dr. Jai Cabajar, who’s also an online personality. The latter shared a screenshot of a social media user who remarked that the senator should be the first to be “shot.”

The online user in the screenshot tweeted: “Dyosko, Mayor Joy shoot to discipline din. Unahin si Risa Hontiveros char.”

Cabajar retweeted this and tagged Hontiveros’ official account on the microblogging platform.

The senator was quick to notice this and later informed her followers that her lawyers are already looking into the matter.

“My lawyers are looking into this. Not char,” Hontiveros said.

Although she got used to receiving threats because of her political standpoint, Hontiveros stressed that such “language and culture” online needs to be stopped.

“Di ako naduduwag sa mga threats.Nasanay na since I’ve been critical of this government.Pero di natin palalampasin ang mga ganito kasi nasasanay lang,” Hontiveros said.

“We have to put a stop to this language & culture of violence,” she added.

In a separate statement on Facebook on the same day, the senator criticized public official-blogger Mocha Uson for reviving the false rumors about her alleged involvement in controversies surrounding PhilHealth.

Mag-focus ka sa trabaho mo sa OWWA imbes na magpakalat ng #FakeNews.Kailangan ng tulong ng OFWs pero nagawa mo pang…

Posted by Senator Risa Hontiveros on Monday, August 3, 2020

 

The post on Facebook page Mocha Uson Blog falsely linked Hontiveros again to the latest PhilHealth’s corruption woes.

“Mag-focus ka sa trabaho mo sa OWWA imbes na magpakalat ng #FakeNews. Kailangan ng tulong ng OFWs pero nagawa mo pang magkalat ng chismis sa isyu na pinabulaanan na ng COA at PhilHealth mismo,” she said.

“Nakalimutan mong 4 years na kayong nakaupo? Sa gitna ng pandemya chismis pa ang inuna,” she added.

Hontiveros, a former board member of the beleaguered state-run firm, then called on the officers involved in the recent massive corruption allegations to be held accountable for their actions.

“Managot ang mga dapat managot sa loob ng PhilHealth. We really need to reform the institution. Lalo na ngayong may pandemya, hindi pwedeng may mga masasamang taong pinagkakakitaan pa ang krisis na ito,” she said.