A reader asked VERA Files Fact Check to look into a claim that the motorcycle Vice President Leni Robredo rode pillion to get to her March 4 campaign rally in Cavite did not actually move and was only for “photo ops.”
This is not true. At least two clips taken from different angles show the motorcycle in motion, with Robredo, in a pink blouse, as a backrider.
The false Facebook (FB) post by a netizen dated March 6 carried a TikTok video showing the vice president taking her helmet off and getting off the back of a motorcycle. Its caption read:
“Dahil magaling tayong magmarites… Photo ops lang pala..angkas lang at mag helmet tapos Hindi nmn pala umandar Ang motor Trapik nga pano aandar”
(Because we are good at being Marites [gossips]… It was just for photo ops… [she] just climbed [aboard a motorcycle] and wore a helmet, but the motorbike did not move. There was heavy traffic, [so] how could it move?)
The clip was a 25-second excerpt from a two-and-a-half-minute-long video originally shot and uploaded by a Robredo supporter using the name Ellen Degenerous on FB.
The shorter clip deliberately excluded the part showing the vehicle in motion, and only included the portion where the motorcycle already came to a halt.
Another netizen shared similar footage but shot from a different angle in a March 4 FB post. The netizen, in her caption, said a staff of the vice president asked to borrow their motorcycle, plus a helmet, which Robredo wore but aboard another motorbike.
Tintin Danica Abdon, wife of the motorcycle owner who drove Robredo to the rally venue, took to social media to confirm the incident. Abdon tagged the vice president’s official FB page in a March 4 post and wrote: “Akalain mo, motor namin sinakyan ng VP papunta sa oval (Would you believe it, the VP rode our motorcycle on her way to the oval).”
The oval Abdon was referring to is the General Trias Sports Park, where Robredo’s Grand People’s Rally for the Cavite leg of her presidential campaign was held. News reports said heavy traffic prompted Robredo to hitch a motorcycle ride to reach the venue on time.
The netizen’s spurious FB post has received 20,000 reactions, 600 comments, 8,700 shares, and over half a million views, as of March 9.
Blogger RJ Nieto, a vocal supporter of President Rodrigo Duterte and Robredo’s rival candidate Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., also shared the erroneous post on his FB page Thinking Pinoy. It currently has 40,000 reactions, 4,400 comments, and 3,300 shares.