House minority wants Lorraine Badoy out of PCOO for continued red-tagging
Sreengrab shows PCOO Usec. Lorraine Badoy.
News5 YouTube Channel, Screen grab

House minority wants Lorraine Badoy out of PCOO for continued red-tagging

(Philstar.com) - September 29, 2020 - 5:27pm

MANILA, Philippines — In a continued bid to hold the Presidential Communications Operations Office accountable for red-tagging administration critics, members of the House minority bloc demanded PCOO Undersecretary Lorraine Badoy's removal from office. 

"The PCOO has made use of its resources to peddle fake news, disinformation, and attacks on critics and the opposition, in an attempt to curtail dissent. In particular, it has used numerous statements in various media platforms falsely tagging as terrorists the members of the Makabayan bloc, who are members of the House Minority," a joint statement, dated September 28, from the solons read. 

READ: Anti-communist gov't task force posts false quote of Anakbayan spokesperson

"At the forefront of these attacks is PCOO [Undersecretary] Lorraine Badoy. Her actions as an appointed government official do not uphold the basic Filipino core values and deliberately disrespects elected public officials who were mandated to serve their constituencies," they added. 

A few weeks ago, Rep. France Castro (ACT Teachers Party-list) called for the suspension of hearings on the budget for PCOO, saying Badoy, who was present at the meeting, needed to first respond to comments made against her under oath.

As a result, the House Committee on Appropriations suspended the budget hearing for the presidential communications staff until further notice. 

"As we consider the budget of PCOO, it should commit to take necessary and immediate measures to hold itself accountable. It should make sure that the PCOO platform will not be used to propagate misinformation and incite hate and violence against critics of the administration," House minority lawmakers said Tuesday. 

They also made the following demands: 

  • that the PCOO and all its officials and personnel take down all its social and other media posts that disrespect and slander the House members belonging to the Makabayan bloc
  • that the PCOO issue a public apology for grave misconduct against the Makabayan bloc
  • the removal of Undersecretary Badoy from her post

"These relentless attacks of Usec. Badoy through her social media platforms, which even incited her platform to issue threats of harm against sitting members of the House are not acceptable to the Minority, and we will not take it in stride or sitting down," the statement further read. 

Badoy was quoted in a GMA News report as saying that Makabayan Bloc members were "high-ranking party members" of the Communist Party of the Philippines whose goals are to weaken the government until it is totally destroyed so that the CPP may topple our democracy and install, in its place, communism."

She has yet to provide evidence for her assertion.

She has also publicly accused lawmakers, academics, journalists and government critics of being communist rebels on more than one occasion in the past and in her official capacity as presidential communications undersecretary.

"We are still under the public health and economic crises brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. Government agencies and their officials are expected to serve the Filipino people and prioritize their welfare at all times," the minority lawmakers said. 

"The 2021 Proposed National Budget should revolve around the pertinent issues of health, education, social services and economic recovery," they added. — Bella Perez-Rubio with a report from Franco Luna

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