Fact checks on public officials

FALSE: Joy Belmonte ensures Angel Locsin will pay for community pantry mishap

FALSE: Joy Belmonte ensures Angel Locsin will pay for community pantry mishap
Although Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte confirmed that Angel Locsin did not coordinate with them before the event, she said that she doesn’t want to blame the actress and ‘nobody wanted what happened’
At a glance:
  • Claim: Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte has ensured that Angel Locsin will be held accountable for the mishap in the community pantry the actress set up on her birthday.
  • Rating: FALSE
  • The facts: Although Belmonte confirmed that Locsin did not coordinate with the QC government prior to the event, the mayor said that she doesn’t want to blame Locsin and that “nobody wanted what happened.”
  • Why we fact-checked this: Facebook’s monitoring tool flagged for verification a video containing this claim, which was an exact copy of a video originally posted on YouTube. As of writing, the videos had over 186,000 combined views on both platforms.
Complete details:

Facebook page “Philippines trendinh news .” – with the misspelled “trending” and the period – uploaded a video on April 26 that falsely claimed Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte has ensured that Angel Locsin will be held accountable for the mishap in the community pantry the actress set up on her birthday.

Locsin organized a community pantry in celebration of her 36th birthday in Barangay Holy Spirit in Quezon City on April 23, where a senior citizen passed out while waiting for his turn to get goods and was declared dead on arrival after he was rushed to the hospital.

The page titled its video, “JUST IN: ANGEL Locsin MAKUKULONG?! Mayor Joy Belmonte Tinayak (sic) na PAGBABAYARAN ni ANGEL ang NANGYARI!” (Just in: Angel Locsin to be imprisoned? Mayor Joy Belmonte ensures Angel will pay for what happened!)

The original video was uploaded on YouTube by channel “Showbiz Fanaticz” on April 25. As of writing, the two videos had over 186,000 combined views both on Facebook and YouTube.

The claim that Belmonte made sure Locsin will pay for the community pantry mishap is false.

In an interview with The Chiefs on TV5 on April 23, Belmonte said that she was not blaming Locsin for what happened, but added that it could have been avoided if the actress had coordinated with the local government unit prior to the event.

“I don’t want to blame Angel. I like Angel, she has a very good heart. Nobody wanted what happened,” Belmonte said.

The mayor also admitted that the incident raised the chances of COVID-19 spreading. It became difficult to control the crowd due to the huge number of people in line, and physical distancing protocols were disregarded.

“She (Locsin) felt that her team could already handle the arrival of the people. She did not coordinate with the barangay, she did not coordinate with the local government, she did not coordinate with the police, and that was the main problem,” Belmonte said in her The Chiefs interview.

The QC government also appealed to the actress and her team to coordinate with authorities if they know of individuals who need to get tested. Still, there are no official news reports or statements released by Belmonte saying that Locsin will pay for what happened.

The actress immediately issued a public apology for the crowd chaos on April 23 and pledged to support the family of the senior citizen who died. (READ: Angel Locsin apologizes for crowd chaos after man dies in community pantry queue)

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Claim Check, Facebook’s monitoring tool, flagged the video by “Philippines trendinh news .” for verification. Rappler has also debunked several false claims from YouTube channel “Showbiz Fanaticz” in the past.

On April 27, Rappler fact-checked a related claim that said President Rodrigo Duterte got angry at Locsin over the controversy surrounding her community pantry. This is also false. – 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.

More fact checks on YouTube channel “Showbiz Fanaticz”: