A press release sent last February 17 by the Office of Bongbong Marcos thru his media liaison Maria Pedroche to the media and quoted en toto by Maharlika TV (https://maharlika.tv/…/million-ilocanos-welcome-bbm…) had this for its headline.
The news said that the BBM-Sara UniTeam visited the Solid North and was given a warm welcome.
“Virtually assured of a landslide victory in the said regions, the UniTeam still made an effort to go around the area to personally deliver their message of unity, healing, and reconciliation,” the press release said.
“The UniTeam’s caravan went around Laoag City, where large crowds also eagerly awaited for them along the streets to get a glimpse of their candidates,” it added.
“The Philippine National Police (PNP) estimated the crown to be over one million,” it said.
The press release, however, did not quote any particular PNP official regarding the “over one million” figure.
This claim is an overestimation because the official total population of Laoag City in May 2020 is 111,651.
The press release also mentioned other towns in the Ilocos Norte where the caravan went.
But again the official total population of Ilocos Norte in 2020 is only 620,000.
Considering the hot February sun when the temperature hovered in the low 30s during the day, it would be ridiculous to say that all of the people went out to the national highway to give the UniTeam a warm welcome.
The press release did mention that the caravan earlier went to Cagayan in Iguig town to attend the 98th birthday of Juan Ponce Enrile.
Although Cagayan province indeed has twice the population of Ilocos Norte, the town of Iguig has a population of only over 30,000.
The press release was sent before the UniTeam’s sortie to Ilocos Sur which only has a official total population of 706,000.
It is indeed a tremendous stretch of imagination to have a million Ilocanos lining up for the UniTeam.