MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – Former presidential spokespersons Edwin Lacierda and Abigail Valte denied involvement in the anti-administration blog #SilentNoMorePH that criticized 7 senators who did not sign the resolution against the killings of minors.
Lacierda and Valte attended the Senate probe into the proliferation of fake news online on Wednesday, October 4.
Senator Cynthia Villar, citing an unnamed source, said Lacierda and Valte are among those behind the blog, with singer Leah Navarro and Cocoy Dayao. Dayao, according to pro-administration bloggers, is the “webmaster” of the site.
But Lacierda countered this and said it was blogger Mark Lopez, who was also at the hearing, who posted the accusation on his social media accounts.
“We are not the owners. I’d like Mark Lopez to show proof because he accused us of being owners. That is a very categorical accusation,” Lacierda said.
Lopez, in response to Lacierda, said he was merely asking a question on his social media post.
“It was in a form of a question. I did not say it,” Lopez said.
Poe then told Lopez of the dangers of such “vague” questions, as it could be interpreted differently.
“Yun ang nakakatakot (That’s what’s scary). It’s not verified but the question is very vague,” she said.
Asked by senators, Valte said she knew him from 2009 when he volunteered for the presidential campaign of then senator Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III.
Dayao is an alleged web security consultant, who supposedly served as consultant in the Presidential Communications Operations Office under the Aquino administration.
But former Palace Communications secretary Herminio Coloma Jr denied it.
“I do not know and I do not recall anyone by that name,” Coloma said in a text message to Rappler.
Poe said Dayao will be summoned to the next hearing, which is yet to be scheduled.
In a tweet, Navarro also denied involvement with the blog and slammed Poe for seemingly siding with the bloggers.
“You can quote me. I have no connection to SilentNoMore,” she said on Twitter.
Poe, in response, urged Navarro to attend the next Senate hearing.
“This hearing is for the people, and supposedly purveyors of fake news are given the chance to speak, well, because we’re investigating fake news. So we will now judge whether it’s true that they’re fake news or not,” Poe said.
“So I’d like her to come here to the next hearing and to speak up. She was a member of my board and she said a lot of things about me that are untrue but I never called her out on it on social media but perhaps now she can say it,” she added. – Rappler.com
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