VERA FILES FACT CHECK: FB page publishes FAKE ‘News5’ infographic on Nueva Ecija governor

Another fake statement card of Nueva Ecija Governor Czarina Umali is making the rounds on social media, this time purporting to have come from news media, News5.

Eleven days after attributing to Umali a quote found to be fake by VERA Files Fact Check, Facebook page NE Patrol published on Feb. 11 another fabricated post carrying a June 2018 Philippine Information Agency photo of the governor, the News5 logo and a statement Umali supposedly made that day, which read:

Sa issue na bumili ako ng worth P50M na hamon mula sa pondo ng lalawigan ng Nueva Ecija, wala akong nakikitang mali dito. Mas kailangan ng ating mga kababayan ng hamon sa panahong ito. Hindi man lahat ay narating ng pa-hamon ng pamilya Umali ay masaya kami sa ganoong kalaking halaga ay nagkaroon ng saysay ang pag-gamit sa pera ng taong bayan. Kulang man ang mga classrooms, sementadong kalsada, tulay at iba pang imprastraktura ay naipangutang na po natin ‘yun. Ang mahalaga ay nakakain ng hamon ang ilan nating mga kababayan

(On the issue that I bought P50M worth of ham using funds from the province of Nueva Ecija, I don’t see anything wrong with this. Our citizens greatly need ham at this time. Even though the Umali family’s ham packages didn’t reach everybody, I’m glad to see that with that amount of funding, we were able to make meaningful use of the people’s money. We might not have enough classrooms, cemented roads, bridges and other infrastructure but we were already able to get loans for those. What’s important is that some of our citizens were able to eat ham).”

The post is fake.

A day after NE Patrol published its post, News5 denied producing and posting the infographic and said on its Facebook and Twitter pages:

“FAKE NEWS ALERT | Ang statement cards na mga ito na inilabas ng NE Patrol page ay HINDI GALING sa News 5 at News 5 Features pages. Maging mapanuri sa mga binabasa at shine-share na posts na balita sa social media. Sa mga pilit namang nanggagaya para lituhin ang mga mambabasa, nananawagan po kami, #TolWagTroll

(FAKE NEWS ALERT | These statement cards released by NE Patrol page ARE NOT from News 5 and News 5 Features pages.Be critical of news reports you read and share on social media. And to those who persistently try to copy [our format] to mislead readers, we call on you, #TolNotTroll).”

No official records or news reports show that Umali issued the statement.

The fake post appeared the same day reports surfaced about a group called Bantay Pondo Nueva Ecija having obtained documents showing the Umali-led provincial office put in a bid of P45,625,000 for 125,000 pieces of ham, which the governor and her family supposedly distributed to locals last Christmas.

NE Patrol now has over 800 followers. The fake Feb. 11 post has been shared by over 2,800 people and has received over 2,800 interactions.


(Editor's Note: VERA Files has partnered with Facebook to fight the spread of disinformation. Find out more about this partnership and our methodology.)

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