Fact check - private individuals

FALSE: Fernando Zobel de Ayala shames opposition, sides with Duterte

FALSE: Fernando Zobel de Ayala shames opposition, sides with Duterte
The businessman did not mention any member of the opposition during the virtual briefing that was cited as the source of information. He only talked about Ayala Corporation's vaccine donation to the government.
At a glance:
  • Claim: Tycoon Fernando Zobel de Ayala shamed the opposition in a virtual briefing on January 4, 2020. He also supposedly sided with the Duterte government.
  • Rating: FALSE
  • The facts: Zobel made no mention of any member of the opposition during the virtual briefing. Instead, he talked about Ayala Corporation’s donation of doses of a COVID-19 vaccine to the government.
  • Why we fact-checked this: The video containing this claim had 94,061 views as of writing. The YouTube channel that made the claim also has a record of posting false information in the past.
Complete details:

YouTube channel Showbiz Fanaticz falsely claimed in a video posted on Wednesday, January 6, that Ayala Corporation CEO Fernando Zobel de Ayala shamed members of the opposition and sided with President Rodrigo Duterte.

Kapapasok lamang na balita na buong tapang nang nagsalita ang business tycoon na si Fernando Zobel de Ayala sa lahat ng paninira diumano ng oposisyon, kabilang na raw si Vice President Leni Robredo, na tinawag na tutulog-tulog si President Duterte sa Malacañang at tila hindi raw ginagawan ng aksyon ang kasalukuyang pandemya sa bansa,” a voice over said at the start of the video.

(News just came in that business tycoon Fernando Zobel de Ayala finally spoke out bravely against the opposition, including Vice President Robredo, who had remarked that Duterte was sleeping on the job and seemed to be doing nothing to combat the pandemic.)

The channel cited as its source Zobel’s appearance in the press briefing of Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque on Monday, January 4.

This is false. Zobel did not mention Robredo or any member of the opposition during the virtual briefing with Roque. Instead, he talked about Ayala Corporation’s donation of doses of a COVID-19 vaccine to the Philippine government and how the private sector was working with the government in bringing various support to the Filipino people during the pandemic.

Zobel said Ayala Corporation is committing 450,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine from British firm AstraZeneca. “The total donation that we will be giving to the government will be about P120 million. Government, in turn, has requested that 50% be given to individuals that the government selects, and 50% will be given back to the private sector so that we can also provide the vaccine for the people who need it,” he said.

Zobel also made no mention of pledging his allegiance to the Duterte government during the briefing, but he thanked the administration for acknowledging all the aid the private sector had given during the pandemic.

“This is a time for everyone – private sector, public sector – to work together. Never have we faced a crisis of these proportions that has produced so much suffering for our country,” Zobel said.

The magnate added that the private sector appreciates the “fairly low-interest environment” in the country, which allowed businesses to continue operating, raise capital, borrow at record-low rates, and continue investing during the pandemic.

In turn, Roque thanked Zobel on behalf of the President for all the financial support Ayala Corporation had given since the pandemic started. Zobel said the Ayala Corporation had donated P12.7 billion for coronavirus-related response as of the end of 2020.

Must Read

[OPINION] Ayala Foundation and the pandemic

[OPINION] Ayala Foundation and the pandemic

Rappler spotted the video by Showbiz Fanaticz via social media monitoring tool CrowdTangle. As of writing, it has 94,061 views on YouTube.

Showbiz Fanaticz has uploaded videos with false information before. In July 2020, it falsely claimed that the Supreme Court affirmed that ABS-CBN was guilty of multiple charges. In October 2020, Rappler also debunked a video from the same channel that said former senator Bongbong Marcos was the new vice president of the Philippines. – Pauline Macaraeg/Rappler.com

Keep us aware of suspicious Facebook pages, groups, accounts, websites, articles, or photos in your network by contacting us at factcheck@rappler.com. Let us battle disinformation one Fact Check at a time.