An old doctored photo falsely portraying President Rodrigo Duterte on a wheelchair has been circulating in Facebook and Viber groups amid rumors about his health.
The photo was posted April 10 by Berni Borlaza Peralta on the Hall of Shame for the Corrupt and Wicked Filipinos public Facebook group and captioned:
KAYA PALA. HMMM. C BONGA GO NAGPPTAKBO NG GOBYERNO. FROM SIDE KICK TO PESTEDENT (SO THAT'S WHY. HMM. BONGA GO IS RUNNING THE GOVERNMENT. FROM SIDE KICK TO PESTEDENT).
However, the original image is of Duterte riding a black motorcycle aided by Sen. Christopher “Bong” Go and four other people, all of whom are wearing face masks.
Go had posted the actual photo last Oct. 1 in a Facebook post with the caption:
Beteranong rider si Tatay Digong! Sobrang Miss na ni Tatay Digong ang pagmo-Motor. Next time na lang daw!! samahan natin sya! Basta ingat parati! kailangan at Mahal ka ng Taong Bayan!!!-- Kuya BONG GO (Father Digong is a veteran rider! Father Digong really misses motorcycle riding. Next time, we’ll join him! Keep safe always! The nation’s people need and love you!!!-- Kuya BONG GO)
Of late, Go has been posting photos of Duterte busy at work in his office as well as jogging and riding his motorbike around the Malacañang grounds in an attempt to dispel rumors surrounding the president’s health after he failed to deliver his weekly Monday talk to the nation on April 5 and canceled the talk reset to April 7. His last talk to the nation was on March 29.
“President Rodrigo Roa Duterte remains fit and healthy for his age and we thank the Filipino people for voicing their concern and wishing the Chief Executive’s strength and good health during this time of COVID-19 pandemic as he continues to discharge his functions as head of the government,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a statement.
The altered photo was first posted by Roderick Gabriel on Oct. 6 on The Resistance - Filipino Dissenting Voices against Duterte Regime public Facebook group, which currently has about 17,900 members.
The image was manipulated to make it seem as if Duterte’s health was failing during the pandemic, causing people to comment that he should resign from his position.
Social media monitoring tool Crowdtangle showed that Peralta’s post has generated 382 interactions, including 186 shares, within a day. It was reposted in at least six other Facebook groups with combined likes of close to 360,000. (AN)
Gabriel, R. [Roderick Gabriel]. (2020, October 6). ay napost ..kaya pa ba? [Status update]. Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/groups/296585457540183/permalink/887659008432822
Go, C.B. [Christopher Bong Go]. (2020, October 1). Beteranong rider si Tatay Digong! Sobrang Miss na ni Tatay Digong ang pagmo-Motor. Next time na lang daw!!... [Status update]. Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/photo/?fbid=1535475409992818&set=a.131308807076159&__tn__=%2CO*F
Peralta, B.B. [Berni Borlaza Peralta]. (2021, April 10). KAYA PALA. HMMM. C BONGA GO NAGPPTAKBO NG GOBYERNO. FROM SIDE KICK TO PESTEDENT. [Status update]. Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/groups/158119937720703/permalink/1610461055819910
Presidential spokesperson on PRRD’s current state of health. (2021, April 8). PTV News. https://ptvnews.ph/presidential-spokesperson-on-prrds-current-state-of-health/?fbclid=IwAR3dSeZy1Wlya-PkZeXOCZW9QqrWflJzIt8bToC_mYrH1FqgzxU0gvaNuUg