Press Release
April 22, 2018

De Lima vows to resist gov't lies, deceits

Opposition Senator Leila M. de Lima has pledged to resist state-sponsored fake news, notably across social media platforms, by being vigilant about the lies peddled by the Duterte administration and helping the public see through their deceits.

De Lima, the most vocal critic of the government's all-out war on drugs, underscored the importance of constantly calling out what she called "the inconsistencies and duplicities" in what the officials of the present administration say and do.

"The manipulators are so good at what they do that people can't tell their own opinions apart from the people they listen to. But that's why these manipulators are so successful and why they are being rewarded by their benefactors and backers," she said.

"It's going to be difficult, but we have to try to emancipate the people from these cults of personalities," she added.

De Lima herself has been continually targeted by fake news stories by some sinister quarters aiming to deliberately tarnish her reputation and silence her from calling out the excesses of the administration in its all-out war on drugs.

It may be recalled that there were previous reports that falsely claimed she had stepped down as senator, that she purchased a USD 6-million mansion in New York, USA, and that detained De Lima was hospitalized after attempting secret suicide.

According to De Lima, Filipinos became gullible to fake news because most of the citizens want to easily keep in touch with their families and friends, which was made possible by the social media platforms, notably Facebook and YouTube.

"I don't know if we, Filipino, are especially vulnerable to fake news than people from other countries… but I think we are all seeing that no one is really immune from fake news because the fakers are getting better and better at their evil activities," she said.

"We, Filipinos, were more exposed to fake news because social media tapped into our needs and desire to stay connected with one another. It took something good, and used it to do evil. That makes it that much more heinous in my mind," she added.

If anything, the former justice secretary said she hopes that every social media user would be more critical of and discerning about the information they read online, especially from dubious websites or sources.

"Make people believe in their own judgment, enable them to make good judgment based on legitimate information - instead of relying on what bloggers tell them to believe," she said.

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