VERA FILES FACT CHECK: FB post MISLEADS with ‘before and after’ rehab photo of Manila Bay; both were taken under Duterte’s watch

A Facebook (FB) post that inaccurately claims to show photos of a rehabilitated Manila Bay under Pres. Rodrigo Duterte’s cleanup campaign and one taken during the previous administration is circulating on the Web.

It’s misleading. Both photos were taken under Duterte’s watch.

FB page Ta Tak Mindanao posted the juxtaposed images on Feb. 26 as part of an album of 41 photos claiming to showcase the accomplishments of Duterte, who took office in July 2016.

Uploaded as the fourth in the photo set, the inaccurate post presented an image of a coastline full of trash, superimposed with the text “Before Duterte,” and edited under it is a photo of a spotless beach labelled “During Duterte.”

A reverse image search shows that the top photo is indeed of Manila Bay taken in September 2018 during the onslaught of Typhoon Ompong (international name: Mangkhut) from Sept. 12 to 16. It was uploaded in a December 2018 Philstar report.

The image of the clean Manila Bay was uploaded by a netizen on Jan. 28, 2019, and was re-published on several news outlets such as GMA News a day later.

The misleading photo collage was published amid criticism of the Duterte administration, now hounded by issues such as the termination of the Visiting Forces Agreement with the United States, the franchise renewal of ABS-CBN, and the government’s response towards the Coronavirus Disease 2019 outbreak.

VERA Files Fact Check has also debunked another misleading post coming from the 41-photo album, which claimed to show before and after pictures of Boracay. (See: VERA FILES FACT CHECK: Viral ‘before and after’ photos of Boracay MISLEADING, shows 2 different beaches on island)

Ta Tak Mindanao’s misleading post has been shared 40,000 times and could have reached 13,000 people with 1.3 comments, mostly thanking the President for his achievements.

Ta Tak Mindanao was created on Nov. 11, 2018.

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