Several pro-Duterte fan pages on Facebook proudly announced how the Australian Navy donated ships and “high-end helicopter.”
The report was shared by “President Duterte Supporters,” whose post has gained over 5,100 shares.
It was also shared by “Duterte-Marcos Loyalist” and “Duterte Balita.”
They even captioned it, “Para sa patuloy na modernisasyon ng AFP dumating sa bansa ang dalawang barko at mga tinaguriang power helicopter galing ng Australia.”
One page even proudly said, “Iba tagala ang Duterte Admin! Ikalat po natin ito mga ka DDS dahil bihira po itong binabalita sa mga ABIAS na Media!!!”
But when we clicked on the links carrying the report, which include blogs such as pilipinasonlineupdates.com, pinoythinking.online, and pinoybalita.net.
We found a YouTube video from pilipinasonlineupdates.com showing the arrival of the “new” ships and helicopter for the continued modernization of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
The PTV report showed two Landing Craft Heavy (LCH) vessels renamed into BRP Ivatan at BRP Batak, donated by the Australian Navy. Also showcased in the report was the “power helicopter.
Our research into this generous move from Australia helped us find out the following things:
- The vessels might have been used for decades and already decommissioned by the Australian Navy in 2014, but they were donated after being refurbished, equipped with new navigation and safety equipment in 2015. The donation even include spare parts.
- The vessels arrived in the Philippines on August 5, 2015 after sailing from Australia to the Philippines starting July 23, 2015. This clearly happened during the Aquino administration, not during the current administration, as what one Facebook fan page claimed.
- Two AgustaWestland AW109E Power helicopters or attack helicopters landed at the Philippine Navy headquarters, as reported by UNTVweb.com. The same news article also reported the arrival of the helicopters with the turnover of the two landing crafts from the Australian Navy to the Philippine Navy in August 2015.
- According to an article on navyrecognition.com, the power helicopters were purchased by the Philippines from AgustaWestland in early 2013. Three of these helicopters were first delivered and commissioned by our Navy in December 22, 2013. The last two were delivered in December 2014 and were formally commissioned into service in August 2015.
If you also look at the news ticker on the PTV clip uploaded to YouTube by an account called “Duterte Latest News,” these are among the headlines that you’ll see:
- PPCRV, suportado ang pagdaraos ng automated elections sa 2016
- Pagbili ng bagog PCOS machines para sa eleksyon 2016, inirekomenda ng Smartmatics sa Comelec
- PNoy, pinangunahan ang oathtaking ceremony ng mga bagong opisyal ng PNP
These tickers further showed that the vessels and helicopters were acquired by the Philippine Navy under the Aquino administration. The pro-Duterte Facebook pages and YouTube channel simply tried to pass this report about the vessels and helicopters as an achievement of the Duterte administration.
Unfortunately, those who cannot be bothered to do their research are likely vulnerable to believing in this misleading report. And many of those people’s thoughts can be found in the comments section, expressing just how much they were misled.
Be Informed. Beat the Trolls, Share the Truth!