CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – An elderly will be facing charges for allegedly spreading false information on social media regarding the government’s effort to extend help to residents affected by the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19), the Department of Social Welfare and Development-10 (DSWD-10) said Thursday (Apr. 2).
The agency identified a certain Marieta Lucagbo, who, based on the screenshots it provided to reporters, posted on her Facebook that DSWD will be giving Php 8,000 cash to beneficiaries.
Oliver Inodeo, DSWD-10 Information Officer, said they received report that Lucagbo posted the information late Wednesday night.
“You go to DSWD tomorrow [Thursday] in front of Cepalco. You are to fill out two forms. We were the first to be visited by DSWD in its house-to-house since we are near their office. God bless. It’s not at the barangay, they passed it on to the DSWD,” Lucagbo’s post said in Cebuano.
Right across the agency’s regional office is the Cagayan Electric Power and Light Company (Cepalco).
Lucagbo, 65, is said be living in a subdivision in Barangay Balulang, this city, near the DSWD-10 office.
A few minutes from her post, she posted: “It’s true. The DSWD has conducted a house-to-house here at Xavier Heights. We filled out two forms; they will then deliver to houses. God bless.”
One of the screenshots included a photo of an envelope containing what appeared to be 1,000-peso bills with a note “Stay at home! God bless. P8,000.”
Inodeo said they posted their official statement on Facebook less than an hour after Lucagbo made the post.
DPWH called Lucagbo’s post as “untruthful” and meant to “deceive the people, especially those who are waiting for aid from the national government,” adding it “will not let this irresponsible post by Lucagbo pass.”
As of this writing, Lucagbo’s account on Facebook can no longer be accessed.
DSWD-10 reminded the public that spreading of “fake news” through the “Unlawful Use of Means of Public and Unlawful Utterances” under article 154 of the Revised Penal Code in relation to section 6 of the Republic Act 10175 or the Anti-Cybercrime Law, is a crime.
“At the time that the country and the whole world is facing a grave crisis due to COVID-19, the social media must not be used to confuse, deceive, and lie to the people and malign the DSWD and other government agencies,” it said.
Inodeo said they are considering on filing a complaint to the PNP Anti-Cybercrime Group against Lucagbo. (davotoday.com)