HOAX: ‘Yolanda rehabilitation funds used by dilawans - UN’
Claim: The United Nations has confirmed that the “dilawans” (yellows) have used the rehabilitation funds for Super Typhoon Yolanda victims in their party's election campaigns.
“Dilawan” is a derogatory term used to refer to the followers of the Liberal Party which uses yellow as campaign color.
The blog topreader.online posted the claim in the last week of October. It was published on Facebook on October 29 and was detected by Facebook’s Claim Check dashboard on October 30.
The post was shared 5 times in different Facebook pages and groups. All of these accounted for a combined total 2,583 interactions and 465,514 followers.
The claim was also sent by a reader for checking.
The facts: There is no such report from the UN.
In the humanitarian response plan by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN OCHA) for Typhoon Yolanda, there is no mention of the rehabilitation funds being used for election campaigning.
UN OCHA is “part of the United Nations Secretariat responsible for bringing together humanitarian actors to ensure a coherent response to emergencies.”
There are also no reports from the UN or its sub-offices supporting the claim.
Meanwhile, the post embedded a Facebook video uploaded by page “Agila ng Pilipinas” on October 7. The video is an excerpt of an August 5, 2015 TV Patrol report on the criticisms of the Noynoy Aquino administration regarding the Yolanda rehabilitation funds.
The first criticism was supposedly from the UN asking the government where the funds for Typhoon Yolanda rehabilitation are, given the 20,000 still homeless families in 2014, a year after the typhoon hit. The organization also said in 2014 that only 20% of the funding provided has been used to rebuild homes.
The second was the Catholic Church’s alleged concern about some of the rehabilitation funds supposedly having been used for vote-buying in the 2016 national elections. In the TV report, the Church compared the 3,000 homes they had built compared to the government’s 2,000. (READ: How to fact-check reports during disasters)
Rappler has also fact-checked a similar claim saying an ex-Liberal Party congressman had bought an Alabang mansion using the same funds.
Both the blog topreader.online and page “Agila ng Pilipinas” post a mix of anti-opposition and pro-administration posts.
Similar to previous dubious blogs and websites that Rappler has checked, the blog newsanchor.info also does not have a company profile, article byline, editorial board, and contact information. — Miguel Imperial/Rappler.com
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