Fact checks on public officials

FACT CHECK: Jinggoy not expelled from Senate


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FACT CHECK: Jinggoy not expelled from Senate
The video bearing the false claim circulated amid the Senate panel’s investigation linking President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. to illegal drugs

Claim: Senator Jinggoy Estrada has been expelled from office. 

Rating: FALSE

Why we fact-checked this: The YouTube video bearing the claim was posted on May 16 by a channel with 110,000 subscribers. As of writing, it has gained 1,304 views, 8 comments, and 33 likes.

Its thumbnail bears the text: “Jinggoy sinibak na. Karma is real. Pinalayas sa Senado. Ito ang matinding pasabog ni Sen. Bato.” (Jinggoy has been fired. Karma is real. Expelled from the Senate. This is Senator Bato’s exposé.)

Other YouTube pages also shared videos with similar claims.

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Facts: Estrada is still part of the upper chamber under the 19th Congress, as the Senate’s website shows. 

The official Facebook accounts of Estrada and the Senate have not made any confirmation regarding the senator’s alleged removal from office.

The video also did not contain proof Estrada is no longer in office, and there are no official sources corroborating the claim.

Article VI, Section 16, of the Constitution explains the process for expelling a sitting senator: “Each House may determine the rules of its proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly behavior, and, with the concurrence of two-thirds of all its Members, suspend or expel a Member. A penalty of suspension, when imposed, shall not exceed sixty days.”


Senate probe on PDEA leaks: The misleading video merely showed audio recordings and videos from a Senate committee hearing on the so-called Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) leaks. 

The Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs is conducting hearings on PDEA documents allegedly linking President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. to illegal drugs. While the claim has yet to be substantiated, Dela Rosa, who chairs the committee, is convinced that the leaked documents were not fabricated.

During the hearing, Estrada, who serves as vice chairman of the committee, accused dismissed PDEA agent Jonathan Morales of lying about the authenticity of an alleged document linking the President to illegal drugs. The senator questioned Morales’ credibility to testify given that he was facing several legal proceedings due to estafa, false testimonies, and complaints for implicating innocent individuals.

Morales clapped back at the senator, saying he should not be judged prematurely as his case is still pending before the court, unlike Estrada who has already been convicted.

Early this year, on January 19, the anti-graft court Sandiganbayan acquitted Estrada of plunder but convicted him of bribery in relation to the pork barrel scam. 

Marcos has been on the receiving end of attacks and criticism from former president Rodrigo Duterte, who has called him a drug addict. Duterte, however, failed to show any proof to support his claim. – James Patrick Cruz/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. You may also report dubious claims to the #FactsFirstPH tipline by messaging Rappler on Facebook or Newsbreak via Twitter direct message. You may also report through our Viber fact check chatbot. Let us battle disinformation one Fact Check at a time.

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