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Andanar: I confronted Mocha over 'symbolism' photo

Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Martin Andanar has taken to task Assistant Secretary Mocha Uson over an erroneous photo she had shared on her Facebook account.

Andanar said in a radio interview on Saturday that Uson should be more prudent with her public posts.

“You can no longer separate yourself as a government employee or high-ranking official,” he was quoted in an official transcript sent to the media.

“So I told her about that na mahirap na nga i-separate na since it’s your blog but at the same time you are the Assistant Secretary. Okay naman si Mocha so sa tingin ko... she just have to more circumspect,” he added.

Andanar said he has urged Uson to get page managers for her social media blog, which has over five millions followers.

“I talked to Mocha about it and told her that of course it’s her blog, it’s her own Facebook page. Sabi ko, ‘Iyon lang whether it’s—I know that its hindi naman intentional iyong nag-upload pero she has to start, she has to hire really people who can manage…her Facebook page/blog, to help out because she’s already now an [Assistant] Secretary pero it was just an advice because that’s really on blog,” he said.

Uson in late May shared a photo of Honduras policemen with a caption asking for prayers for the Filipino army, amid the military operations against the ISIS-inspired Maute group in Marawi City.

She later defended the shared photo and said it was just a symbolism, and that she did not say that the men in the photos were part of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

A staunch Duterte supporter since the campaign period, Uson was appointed as a PCOO official on May 9. She initially served as a member of the Movie and Television Review And Classification Board.

Photo blunder

Aside from Uson’s erroneous photo, Andanar also had to deal with the Philippines News Agency’s blunder that week after it embedded a photo of a scene during the Vietnam War for an article about Marawi City.

PNA later apologized for its post and for an earlier article about alleged extrajudicial killings in the Philippines.

Andanar did not make himself available to media when asked for comment about the Uson and PNA incidents.

He explained during the radio interview that he felt he did not need to air his side since Uson and PNA already issued statements.

“During that time I thought that there was no reason for me to talk anymore kasi nagsalita na iyong agency eh, nagsalita na rin si Mocha,” he said. —JST, GMA News