By ANNE MARXZE D. UMIL
MANILA – Anti-election fraud group Kontra Daya reported systematic red-tagging on election day, May 9.
The group received reports of military violations, technological hacks, disinformation, and red-tagging.
“These are on top of the earlier-recorded direct participation of the AFP [Armed Forces of the Philippines] in the terror-tagging of some candidates and party-list groups, various tarpaulins vilifying them, and other instances of using fake news to demonize parties perceived by the government as critics or oppositionists,” the group said in a statement.
In Central Luzon and Southern Tagalog, uniformed men were involved in red-tagging.
Kontra Daya revealed that in Amsic High School in Barangay Amsic, Angeles City, Pampanga, a voters’ assistance desk manned by local volunteers and policemen was riddled with red-tagging posters linking the Makabayan bloc party-list groups to the revolutionary CPP-NPA-NDF.
In Calintaan, Occidental Mindoro, the military reportedly announced that part of the materials confiscated from the New People’s Army were Vice President Leni Robredo’s campaign materials.
There are also tarpaulins and posters in various places in Cagayan, Metro Manila, Pampanga, and Laguna reportedly bearing dinsinformation that red-tagged candidates were disqualified or that they should not be voted for.
These tarpaulins were posted in Project 6 Elementary School and Quirino Elementary School in Quezon City, in Angeles Elementary School, Pulung Cacutud Elementary School in Angeles, Pampanga, and San Antonio Elementary School in San Pedro, Laguna; and flyers in Camalaniugan, Cagayan.
Kontra Daya also said that activists’ phone numbers appeared to have been professionally hacked, implicating them in electioneering.
“Both the Anakpawis Party List and Save San Roque Alliance experienced being invoked in text messages announcing that they would be giving-away P1,000 ($19) load cards and other effects,” the group said.
A member of the Samahan ng mga Manininda of UP Diliman Campus also received a text message containing disinformation, red-tagging party-list groups under the Makabayan coalition and the Leni Robredo-Kiko Pangilinan presidential tandem.
ACT Teachers Partylist meanwhile condemned what they call as illegal campaigning, disinformation and red-tagging by members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines against party-lists under the Makabayan bloc and their senatorial bets as well as the Tropang Angat at 1Sambayan slates.
“We strongly condemn the dissemination of social media posts by Philippine National Police units, AFP, NTF-ELCAC, and their other agents. It (red-tagging) was massive during the campaign period and worsened as the election day approached. Trolls in uniform and those who sabotaged democracy have no place on Facebook, Twitter, and other social networking sites,” said ACT Teachers Party-List Rep. France Castro in reaction to the reported media blasts and text blasts.
Kabataan Partylist also received reports of spreading of posters and flyers that pose as Commission on Elections announcements that the party-list and the rest of the Makabayan bloc are disqualified from areas and precincts in Ilocos Sur, Negros Oriental, Davao City and Quezon City, among many other reports nationwide.
“We urge Comelec to take decisive action or else be complicit to widespread deception of voters in their name. Such posters not only unfairly attack opposition candidates but also create an atmosphere of terror that discourages voters to vote according to conscience. Young first time voters of all people are most vulnerable and affected by this chilling effect,” the group said in a statement. (RTS, RVO)