a person with collar shirt: Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque © screengrab from Palace briefing Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque on Monday allayed concerns that China will influence the country’s domestic affairs, including elections, through social media.

Roque said there is nothing to worry about since Filipinos are smart enough to discern information online.

“I have been a strong adherent for freedom of expression and free marketplace of ideas at ang mga Pilipino naman po, napakatalino na natin. Hindi po lahat ng nababasa sa Facebook ay pinaniniwalaan,” he said at a news conference.

The Palace official gave the reaction after Vice President Leni Robredo expressed fears of Chinese interference in the 2022 elections after Facebook said last week that it took down several pages and accounts for coordinated inauthentic behavior.

One network of accounts was traced back to Fujian, China, with trolls posting about the South China Sea and the Philippines’ 2022 presidential election, among other local issues.

Robredo also lamented the proliferation of fake news on social media, which she said has been “playing” with the Filipinos’ psyche since 2016. — Virgil Lopez/RSJ, GMA News

This article Roque: Filipinos intelligent enough to discern information online was originally published in GMA News Online.

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