/ 17 January 2023

ACT TEACHERS Party-list Representative France Castro denied claims circulating online that their organization is extorting money from teachers.

“We reiterate that there is zero truth in the claims circulating online that ACT Teachers Party-List has been extorting teachers. These are simply fake news and another attempt to destroy our character, call us criminals, and stir away conversation from the worsening economic crisis in the country,” Castro said.

She said that the group had nothing to do with the collection of union dues from teachers.

“Ang binabanggit nilang P20 na ibinabawas sa mga miyembro ng unyon ng mga guro ay ang kanilang union dues na bumabalik rin sa mga guro sa pamamagitan ng mga medical and other benefits, union services, at pagpasok sa mga negosasyon kasama ang DepEd tungo sa mga Collective Negotiation Agreement para sa mga miyembro ng regional unions. Ito ay legal na kaltas sa mga member ng mga unyon na naaayon sa batas ukol sa Public Sector Unionism. Walang kinalaman ang ACT Teachers Party-List sa usaping ito at pawang mga paninira lamang ang mga pinapakalat na sa akin daw napupunta ito,” Castro explained.

She blamed former National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict spokesperson Lorraine Badoy-Partosa and Jeffrey Celiz, a self-proclaimed member of the Communist Party of the Philippines- New People’s Army, for the false information against her and the party-list.

The lawmaker said that state forces are spreading dangerous and false information about the group in a bid to condition the mind of the public.

“We vehemently condemn the proliferation of this false information along with the non-stop red-tagging of progressive party-lists, organizations, and individuals,” Castro added.