FACT CHECK Online Posts

VERA FILES FACT CHECK: ‘New P10k ayuda on GCash’ from Cayetano FAKE

Several Facebook (FB) groups shared a fake post about a new P10,000 ayuda (cash assistance) on GCash from Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano. 

Using old photos of the lawmaker giving out envelopes containing money, the post carried the phrase, “PM ME PO” which was meant to deceive netizens that they can receive cash aid if they sent a personal message to Cayetano.

On Sept. 5 and 6, the FB groups disseminated the post with the caption that read:

Bagong bago!!!, Simulan nyo na habang konti palang, (sic) nakaka alam P10,000 Ayuda on GCash, PM me for details, and free giveaway for everyone PM me how., (sic) While others are complaining, remember opportunity comes but once so be the one to tell others about it. Start it while only few know it., (sic) PM me po Legit.”

(New!!! Start now while only a few know P10,000 ayuda on GCash, PM me for details, and free giveaway for everyone PM me how., (sic) PM me Legit.)

The fake post carried a collage of photos, two of them showing Cayetano distributing cash aid, and bearing the text: “10k ayuda para sa bawat pamilyang Pilipino” (10k cash assistance for every Filipino family) and “PM Me now.” 

The images were from May 2021 when Cayetano gave out cash assistance to residents of Sta. Rosa, Laguna through his Sampung Libong Pag-asa program where P10,000 cash aid was given to chosen beneficiaries across the country.  

One post also bore the logo of the Department of Social Welfare and Development with the statement, “Lahat ng sasali makakakuha ng P10,000 (All who join will receive P10,000).”

Fake posts about cash aid are nothing new. One such piece of disinformation making fun of Cayetano’s P10,000 ayuda program was fact-checked by VERA Files just over two months ago.

And on July 1, Cayetano warned the public against fake social media posts that collect names and money using his cash aid programs. The former House Speaker stressed that the only official platform for his cash assistance is his own verified FB page.

Despite this, netizens were quick to believe the latest fabricated cash aid announcement and asked how they can contact Cayetano. Many offered their mobile numbers.

The fake posts resurfaced five days after the senator urged the government to reconsider ayuda distribution through his proposed “Sampung Libong Pag-asa” bill, the refiled Senate version of his previous 10K Ayuda Bill in the House of Representatives. 

More than 270 FB posts spread the latest fake information, garnering 23,199 interactions, according to the social media monitoring tool CrowdTangle.

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