MANILA – Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar reiterated the civic duty of local radio and news reporters to allow their programs to be an avenue for more Filipinos to understand the benefits of the COVID-19 vaccine.
During the Network Briefing News on Thursday, Secretary Andanar said that they should be deliberate in the information that they release to the public because this could hamper the rollout of the vaccination program.
He said this in response to a piece of misleading information allegedly reported by a local radio that’s heard in Sagay, Camiguin, and now causing vaccine hesitancy among residents there.
“Ang mga brodkaster po natin, lalo na yung mga kaibigan natin sa Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster sa Pilipinas ay talaga namang pinag-iingatan ang pagkalat ng fake news – lalo na patungkol sa COVID-19 [Our broadcasters, especially our friends at the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster sa Pilipinas are careful against spreading fake news, especially about COVID-19],” Secretary Andanar said.
Mayor Joseph Uayan shortly responded that such information would likely come from social media rather than from radio and television.
“Hindi ako naniniwala na galing talaga sa radyo kundi galing sa kapwa mga Sagaynon na nakukuha nila sa mga news galing sa social media,” he said.
According to Mayor Uayan, the local government did a “personalized” approach information drive in nine barangays there to encourage more residents to get the COVID-19 jab, as a protection against the more serious threats of the virus. He also encouraged barangay leaders to get vaccinated first so that their constituents will have concrete proof that some information they read on social media is not true.
“I do house visits. Part of this (info drive), I gave instructions to my barangay captains that they should take the lead in correcting the misconception of the people,” he added.
With the rekorida lead by the local government, Mayor Uayan said that it helped more residents there to stay updated on the latest COVID-19 situation in their town.
“Updated po yung mga tao ko. Doon po nag-umpisa yung pagbabago sa isipan nila,” he said.