MANILA – The respective communication agencies of the Philippines and Myanmar will cooperate to combat the spread of fake news and misinformation, Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar said Friday.
In an interview with the Philippine News Agency (PNA), Andanar said the PCOO is willing to provide help and hear inputs from Myanmar’s Ministry of Information in dealing with the issue of misinformation that can help both countries.
“The internet is a worldwide technology so kung merong fake news at kumalat sa buong mundo, pwede nating tawagan sila (if there is fake news and it spreads worldwide, we can call them) using our hotline. Kapag meron tayong nakikitang parang mali na balita (If we see something wrong in the news), we send them right away our response to that news,” he said.
Andanar said this is the second MOU to be signed with Myanmar and the first under his helm as PCOO chief.
“Unfortunately, the first media exchange program was not active. Right now, we will make sure that something happens. That’s why bumalik sila (they returned) because they really want to make this an active MOU,” he said.
Aside from Myanmar, the PCOO has already established MOUs in information and media cooperation and exchange with fellow Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries Thailand, Singapore, and Cambodia.
Andanar said MOUs with other ASEAN countries like Vietnam, Brunei and Malaysia are in the works.
“Pwede tayong magtulungan (We can cooperate) as a regional bloc in terms of stopping fake news and disinformation and I think that’s a very potent way to battle this very dangerous way of disseminating disinformation,” he said.
Andanar and his Myanmarese counterpart, Information Minister Dr. Pe Myint, on Friday signed an agreement involving exchange of information, personnel, facilities, and conduct of training between the two countries.
Provisions of the MOU allow the exchange of news and information materials, films, and radio and television reports to help expand the content of Manila and Naypyidaw’s respective state media organizations.
The PCOO has also signed information exchange agreements with China, South Korea, Cambodia, Hungary, and Russia. (PNA)