Tue. Jun 15th, 2021

MANILA – Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar has asked its attached agencies to strictly limit the cross-posting of content on its social media platforms.

Department Order No. 20-009 signed by Andanar on May 11 requires attached agencies to limit the posting of content to live streaming and briefings of President Rodrigo Duterte, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo, members of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID), and major primetime news and public affairs programs of PTV-4, Radyo Pilipinas, and the Philippine News Agency.

The order also stated that the Radio Television Malacañang (RTVM) will continue to manage the cross-posting activities.

Andanar confirmed that the order was issued after the PCOO Facebook page shared a post from the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF ELCAC) page which published infographics that held ABS-CBN television network responsible for the expiration of its broadcast permit. The infographics were already taken down.

“With the identification of the individual accountable for uploading and sending of the contentious Facebook post, our office deems an investigation into the matter, unnecessary,” Andanar said in a statement.

Andanar said a memorandum is scheduled to be sent within the day asking the individual for an explanation, after which the proper action will be taken by the PCOO.

“We have undertaken the initial step of limiting access to the PCOO’s social media pages and accounts. We would like to reassure the public that we will uphold accountability on matters like this in order to minimize such unfortunate instances from happening again in the future,” he said.

Earlier, Andanar and Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque also clarified that the NTF-ELCAC statement is not an official stance of the PCOO and the Office of the Presidential Spokesperson (OPS), respectively.

“The posted content is not in any way an official statement or an opinion of the PCOO. The issue regarding ABS-CBN Corporation’s network franchise remains within the purview of Congress,” Andanar said.

Roque, like Andanar, said his office does not share the same view.

“We wish to clarify that the above posts did not come from the Office of the Presidential Spokesperson and the NTF Stratcomms which is headed by the OPS. Hence, not the official statement of our Office,” Roque said.

Bayan Muna party-list Rep. Ferdinand Gaite earlier accused the NTF-ELCAC of meddling with the ABS-CBN franchise issue by “spreading disinformation, fake news, to advance its sinister agenda.”

PCOO Undersecretary Lorraine Marie Badoy on Sunday said the ABS-CBN franchise issue “has clearly become an NTF-ELCAC issue” owing to the communist movement’s exploitation for their own interests.

“We are fully cognizant about how the terrorist CPP-NPA-NDF (Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front) exploits the ABS-CBN closure and views it as an opportunity to sow chaos and division,” said Badoy, speaking for the NTF-ELCAC.

Badoy said the CPP-NPA-NDF and its legal fronts will stop at nothing to divide the Filipino people to reach its end goal of overthrowing the government.

She said the “meddling” with the franchise issue is the duty of the NTF-ELCAC to “debunk” anti-government propaganda by the communist movement.

In a separate statement, National Security Adviser and NTF-ELCAC Vice Chair Hermogenes Esperon Jr. justified the infographics, which discuss the legal situation of ABS-CBN’s franchise.

“If the left is exploiting the issue, which it is, then NTF-ELCAC must come in and at the least warn and inform the people about the issues. Freedom of the press is not the issue here. I go for law and order,” Esperon said.

ABS-CBN’s stopped its broadcast operations on May 5 to comply with the cease and desist order of the National Telecommunications Commission’s (NTC) following the expiration of the station’s franchise on May 4.

The media giant has already filed a petition before the Supreme Court (SC) to nullify NTC’s cease and desist order. (ia/PNA)

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