Senatorial candidate Harry Roque (File photo)

MANILA – UniTeam senatorial candidate Harry Roque said freedom of the press and expression should not be suppressed and Filipinos must be allowed to voice out their opinions.

Roque stressed that there should be no law abridging the freedom of expression and the press.

"Hayaan mong ang taong bayan ang mag-decide kung ano ang fake news pero hindi mo puwedeng supilin ang malayang pamamahayag, malayang pananalita (Let the people decide which is fake news but they should not be prevented from expressing what they want),” he said in an interview with an online news portal.

A human rights lawyer, Roque lamented how some companies earn from disseminating false information.

Naiisip ko merong mga kumpanya na kumikita dahil sa pag-disseminate ng impormasyon. Sila naman dapat ang may responsibilidad na siguraduhin na ang kanilang medium ay hindi ginagamit para sa panlilinlang (Some companies earn from disseminating false information. They should be responsible enough to make sure they do not deceive people),” Roque said.

According to a February 2022 survey of Social Weather Stations, 70 percent of Filipinos believe that the problem of fake news and its spread on the Internet is serious.

If elected to the Senate, Roque said he would file a bill holding the intermediaries liable for the spread of disinformation.

Bakit wala kayong sistema para maiwasan ng (Why is there no system to stop) fake news?" he asked. (PR)