As candidates continue their campaign sorties, fact-checkers caught wind of  false claims related to their rallies. The most controversial claim so far was on the UniTeam presence in Las Piñas City, where organizers boasted an attendance of half a million supporters. Netizens questioned the edited image that circulated on social media. In the end, fact-checkers were able to identify the sources of the images while Police Colonel Jaime Santos, Las Piñas’ police chief, estimated the crowd at 18,000.

The Vice President and presidential aspirant Leni Robredo’s pink movement likewise was accused of  editing several images. Supporters were allegedly paid to attend Robredo’s rallies. A supposed screenshot of lawyers paying rally attendees made its way to the internet. Moreover, Robredo’s spokesperson also allegedly made a Freudian slip concerning plans to cheat their rivals during the May 9, 2022 elections. partners debunked all these false claims.

Red tags on pink ribbons

Perhaps threatened by the huge turnout off pink rallies, peddlers of disinformation  accused Robredo and the Liberal Party of having ties with the Communist Party of the Philippines–New People’s Army (CPP-NPA). One claim alleged that the party endorsed Robredo’s candidacy while  another misquoted Sharon Cuneta—actress and wife of vice-presidential candidate Senator Kiko Pangilinan, as confirming thecommunists connection. An absurd claim also asserted that Robredo was married to an NPA rebel when she was 15 years old. All these were fact-checked and proven untrue.

More spurious content emerged this week to attack Robredo and her running mates. One was on her  alleged ties with drug lords, getting married to Pangilinan, and flashing a  hand signal identified as demonic.  All these falsehoods came from edited images and videos, aimed at misleading voters and discrediting her presidential campaign.

Stretching the truth

Robredo’s rival, Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., made headlines this week as well. The son of the ousted dictator claimed that the galunggong fish was the easiest to raise in an interview. This claim is baseless.

Other claims which valorized Marcos’ supposed credentials include his alleged involvement in pushing for the wage increases for teachers and that he came  from the “richest province in the Philippines.” Satires were making rounds on social media, causing a stir among netizens too. Among these are Marcos’  alleged canonization by Pastor Apollo Quiboloy and Marcos suing the Catholic church for endorsing  Robredo’s candidacy.

Still, Marcos’ staunch supporters continue to perpetuate the claim that he was cheated during the 2016 elections. But  in a rare instance, the claim that he was involved with public service activities after his loss was fact-checked and rated accurate.

Claims pertaining to the Marcos regime:

Fact-checks concerning Senate bets: is a collaborative fact-checking project for the 2022 Philippines’ elections. It is an initiative of academe, media and civil society to counter disinformation and provide the public with verified information.