MANILA — Former Vice President Leni Robredo on Thursday urged fresh graduates of Adamson University to fight disinformation,during the university's 84th commencement exercises.
"Speak out against hate, lies, and disinformation. Assert the truth at every instant," Robredo said at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City.
Robredo, who chairs the Angat Buhay NGO, also urged graduates to volunteer their skills and time for just causes.
"Wala sa ating nag-iisa (No one is alone). So find out what your community needs and fight alongside its advocates. ... Continue to persevere, serve and strive," she said.
"Find more of you who will rise to the challenge, more to widen the path for others, more who will serve the last, the least, and the lost."
The erstwhile leader of the country's political opposition made similar remarks about fake news during her birthday rally last April, as the presidential campaign neared the homestretch.
She told her supporters at the time: "Kailangan 'pag 'fake news' sinasabi agad natin na kasinungalingan 'yan at palitan agad natin ng katotohanan."
("Fake news" should be quickly branded as falsehood and truth must be immediately asserted.)
Widespread and long-running disinformation operations were seen as one of the reasons for Robredo's defeat.
Academics said Robredo was the no. 1 target of "fake news" online, and her chief rival Ferdinand Marcos Jr., who would eventually win the elections in a landslide victory, benefitted most from it.
Even after the polls, Robredo continues to endure attacks, with her newly-launched Angat Buhay NGO being accused as part of the communist movement.
The NGO said the allegations were "utterly baseless and completely false."
FROM THE ARCHIVES