Message by PCO Secretary Cheloy Velicaria-Garafil at the Ceremonial Signing of the Memorandum of Understanding and the Launching of the Media and Information Literacy Project

Event Ceremonial Signing of the Memorandum of Understanding and the Launching of the Media and Information Literacy Project
Location Grand Ballroom, Hilton Hotel in Pasay City

His Excellency President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., sir; Secretary Benjamin Abalos; Chairman Prospero De Vera III; Undersecretary Eduardo Punay; Assistant Secretary Dexter Galban; ladies and gentlemen; esteemed partners; members of the media; and advocates for a better-informed society, magandang hapon po sa ating lahat.

Today, we stand together for an empowered and vigilant society. Today, we celebrate the launch of a unified effort by the Marcos administration and the most influential members of the digital media industry.

We are not merely embarking on a mission; we are empowering a collective endeavor to exemplify the power of a whole-of-nation approach, and indeed, a whole-of-society commitment.

Sa panahon po natin ngayon ay napakadali na ang pagkuha ng impormasyon gamit ang mga bagong teknolohiya, online news, at social media. Ngunit kasabay nito ang mabilis din pagkalat ng maling impormasyon.

False narratives and fake news have the power to mislead, divide, and even cause harm or damage. Our responsibility, then, is clear—to arm our citizens with the tools to discern truth from falsehood.

Sa tulong ng Department of Education, Commission on Higher Education, Department of Interior and Local Government, at Department of Social Welfare and Development, kami ay umaasa na magiging matagumpay ang layunin natin na labanan ang misinformation at fake news. Together, we are taking on this feat that is not just crucial, but imperative for the well-being of our digital world.

Our reach extends further with our partners—Meta, Google, TikTok, and X—reputable giants in the digital scheme. Their support strengthens our causes, underlining the gravity of our message. Our formidable alliance is committed to ensuring that truth and accuracy prevail in a society, where every voice contributes to the chorus of truth.

Sisimulan po natin ang ating mga kabataan dahil sila ang pinaka exposed sa digital landscape at sa mga panganib nito. Sa pamamagitan ng Media and Information Literacy Campaign, bibigyan natin sila ng mga kasangkapan upang kritikal na mapagsuri at makapag-validate ng mga pinagmulan ng mga impormasyon, at malaman ang pinagkaiba ng mga mapanlinlang na kasinungalingan mula sa katotohanan.

With our education sector equally dedicated to this cause, our campaign intends to introduce these efforts through the school curriculum, to ensure that every student in the country is equipped to fight fake news.

Ngunit ang ating misyon ay hindi lamang sa loob ng paaralan. Dadalhin natin ito sa ating mga komunidad. Makikipag-usap tayo sa ating mga local leaders, civil servants, at ordinaryong mamamayan. We will enable them to navigate the digital world with discernment and responsibility.

In doing so, we hope to raise a society of “synthesizers, those who are able to use the right information at the right time for the right purpose to make the right choices.”

As we march forward, we envision a future that protects the fundamental rights of everyone. We therefore commit to tailoring today’s efforts to address the needs of those who consistently face the exploits of fake news— women, children, the elderly, and those without easy access to technology.

Ladies and gentlemen, what we are launching today is a unifying force that calls upon every sector of our society to join hands and ensure the triumph of truth. It is a demonstration of what we can achieve when government, private partners, and citizens collaborate for the betterment of the country.

In closing, let us remember that, today, we are not just witnesses to history; we are architects of change and champions of a more enlightened and empowered citizenry.

Marami pong salamat at mabuhay po tayong lahat! [applause]

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