CLAIM: President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. ordered a memorandum on salary deductions among government workers to be used as donations for the earthquake victims in Turkey and Syria
THE FACTS: Presidential Communications Office (PCO) Secretary Cheloy Garafil debunked the circulating photo of a memorandum claiming that there will be a fund for the earthquake victims in Turkey and Syria created using the two-day salary deduction from government employees.
The fake memo is entitled: “TWO DAYS SALARY DEDUCTION FOR THE MONTH MARCH 2023 FROM ALL GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES FOR PRESIDENT RELIEF FUND FOR TURKEY AND SYRIA”. It stated that there will be a two-day salary cut for all government workers, including the armed forces and “…[o]fficials locally recruited in our Foreign Missions” to open a fund to “extend maximum support to Turkish Government and people to help them cope with the distractions caused by the earthquake…” The alleged fund is named “PRESIDENT’S RELIEF FUND FOR TURKEY EARTHQUAKE VICTIMS.”
The document also included a signature from the Executive Secretary, Lucas P. Bersamin, and a seal that stated that it was a “certified copy”.
On February 6, 2023, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake ravaged the southern and central parts of Turkey along with the northern and western parts of Syria, resulting in a total of 50, 000 deaths. As of the moment, there are six Filipinos reported dead from the said earthquake.
WHY WE FACT-CHECKED THIS: The current president is not known for a quick and well-thought-out response to disasters, so the fake memo about a salary cut among government employees may be easily believed.