VERA FILES FACT CHECK: Graphic of Lacson supporting Bam Aquino’s Senate run NOT new; it’s from 2019

Sen. Panfilo “Ping” Lacson’s old endorsement of Benigno “Bam” Aquino IV’s re-election to the Senate is making the rounds on Facebook this month, falsely presented as one that is recent.

The graphic shows the two men’s faces, a banner that announced the endorsement and the quote: “Kung ako lang masusunod, magandang makabalik si Senator Bam sa Senado (If I had my way, it would be good for Senator Bam to return to the Senate).” It was posted by at least nine FB accounts on Feb. 15.

Lacson did make that statement, but it was in a Jan. 28, 2019 video posted by the FB page of non-government organization Kaya Natin! Movement for Good Governance and Ethical Leadership released ahead of the May 2019 midterm elections. The graphic was first posted by the page Pilipinong Palaban Jan. 30 that year.

The recent FB posts, however, cropped out Pilipinong Palaban’s social media handle and hashtag. This made the graphic and Lacson’s endorsement look new and timed for the 2022 national polls.

“I see your true colors, Mr.Pinky Lacson! Ha, ha, ha! Endorse daw niya uli si Bam Aquino na maging senator uli (He says he’ll endorse Bam Aquino again to be a senator once more),” one FB user wrote.

Another said: “Kaya nag iingay yan lang pala gusto sabihin (This was why he was making noise, he just wanted to say this).”

The senator recently made headlines for saying on Feb. 13, in a now-deleted tweet directed at the United States, that not all Filipinos were “extortionists.” This was in response to President Rodrigo Duterte’s statement a day earlier telling the U.S. to “pay” if it wanted to continue its Visiting Forces Agreement with the Philippines.

Among those who published the false and misleading posts are FB pages Filipino ako and Duterte 2016 ‘Bohol Movement’ and six private FB users. It has collectively garnered over 640 shares. According to social media monitoring tool CrowdTangle, more than 325,000 people could have also seen the posts.

Filipino ako was created in December 2019, Duterte 2016 ‘Bohol Movement’ in July 2011.

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