VERA FILES FACT CHECK: Video on Bayanihan 3 cash aid MISLEADING

An old video announcing the approval of a P10,000 cash aid to victims of calamities in the country has been making the rounds online. This is misleading.

The video from YouTube channel Melvs Castle bears a news ticker that reads: “BAYANIHAN 3 P10,000 CASH AID TULOY NA DAHIL SA MGA KALAMIDAD SA PILIPINAS (now approved because of calamities in the Philippines). This was reused on Facebook on April 22 and passed off as breaking news.

The Bayanihan 3 bill, formally known as the Bayanihan to Arise As One Bill filed by House Speaker Lord Allan Velasco and Rep. Stella Quimbo, has yet to be signed as Congressional sessions will not resume till mid-May.

The YouTube video as shared on FB was clipped and cropped from a November 2020 SMNI news report where Senator Christopher “Bong” Go was interviewed. At the time, the country was struck by Typhoon Ulysses (international name Vamco), and Go said there wasn’t enough budget to pursue the Bayanihan 3 bill in 2020.

A stimulus package, Bayanihan 3 aims to provide P1,000 for each family member regardless of socioeconomic status, a P1,000 allowance for each student and teacher, and P8,000 for every displaced worker, among others. The bulk of the funds will be used for the government’s COVID-19 response and for economic recovery efforts.Meanwhile, five other versions of the bill were filed at the House, and are being consolidated. Some of these have proposed the distribution of P10,000 to every Filipino household.

On April 12, the House of Representatives held a meeting to fast-track the Bayanihan 3 bill. It aims to have the bill signed by next week, just in time for the May 17 resumption of sessions at the House and Senate.

The misleading video emerged a day after Gabriela Women’s Party Rep. Arlene Brosas urged the reallocation of the P19 billion budget of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict to provide P10,000 worth of financial aid for 1.9 million families.

Melvs Castle’s video has been reuploaded on eight Facebook (FB) groups named after the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s Social Amelioration Program, gathering 8,000 FB reactions and 20,000 views on YouTube.

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