Cabinet Secretary and acting presidential spokesperson Karlo Nograles (File photo)

MANILA – The Palace reminded the public on Saturday to get updates and news, especially about the Covid-19 pandemic, only from official sources to avoid panic and confusion.

Cabinet Secretary and acting presidential spokesperson Karlo Nograles belied anew rumors of a total lockdown in the country, calling them "false and baseless."

"As I said in our press briefing yesterday (Friday), our country is dealing with a real threat that understandably concerns our people, and spreading these unverified rumors contributes to unnecessary anxiety and needless panic. Hindi po ito nakakatulong (It's not helping any)," he said in a statement.

Nograles referred to an audio clip shared via personal messages and social media, in which a male voice advised the public to stock up on essential supplies as the government is considering placing the country under a total lockdown.

Nograles reiterated the assurance of the Department of Agriculture (DA) that there are more than enough supplies of basic food commodities, particularly rice, for at least the next three months.

"Enough until the next harvest season in April," he added.

The DA earlier said supplies for lowland and highland vegetables are at 85 percent and 107 percent sufficiency levels, respectively.

Nograles said "unfounded and malicious rumors" must not be shared.

"While we encourage the public to keep informed about the latest developments in our battle against Covid-19, we urge everyone to obtain their news and information from credible sources, dismiss disinformation, and contribute positively in our efforts to stop the spread of Covid-19 by observing minimum public health standards and by getting vaccinated in order to protect ourselves, our families, and our communities," Nograles said. (PNA)