The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) is already tracking the individuals behind the audio clip warning of a total lockdown, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said Monday.
“The NBI has started tracking these purveyors of false information and will arrest them if found,” Guevarra said in a message to reporters.
“They will be charged, among others, with unlawful use of publication and unlawful utterances under the Revised Penal Code, in relation to the Cybercrime Law,” he added.
Acting presidential spokesperson Karlo Nograles previously denounced the audio clip, calling the rumors “false and baseless.”
The audio clip claimed that President Rodrigo Duterte was likely to declare a total lockdown across the country as COVID-19 cases continue to reach record highs.
Guevarra urged the public to refrain from sharing the voice clips.
“I ask netizens to stop sharing these voice clips to prevent alarm, panic buying, and hoarding of essential goods,” he said.
On Monday, for the third straight day, the Philippines broke its all-time record of new COVID-19 infections, logging 33,169 new cases.
This brought the nationwide tally to 2,998,530 and active cases to 157,526. — BM, GMA News