A few days ago, in the height of all the news reports and posts about the eruption of the Taal Volcano, a rather worrying text message was being spread among Filipinos.
Here’s what the text said:
“Guys, avoid nyo din pumunta sa MOA. 1 of the Engineers is our family friend and pinatawag sila ng management dahil nasira na ang mga pondasyon sa ilalim causing the water from the bay to enter sa ilalim. Pumping system na lang yung tumutulak pabalik ng water sa bay. Pag nasira ang mga pumps pwedeng mag collapse ang moa.”
(Rough translation: Guys, also avoid going to MOA. One of the engineers is our family friend and they were called by management because the foundations underground have been destroyed, causing the water from the bay to enter underground. It’s only a pumping system that’s pushing the water back to the bay. If the pumps get destroyed, MOA may collapse).
This message, of course, caused unrest among Filipinos—especially those in and near the area.
However, SM Mall of Asia was quick to issue a statement denying the false claims going around:
The foundation of the SM Mall of Asia Complex is built on concrete piles that reach the bedrock and will withstand extreme situations. The statement where water will make the building collapse is patently false.We also have rigorous annual checks to ensure the safety of the buildings so at no time will the safety of our customers, tenants and employees be compromised.
It is unclear where the chain message originated, but it definitely caused an unnecessary disturbance in the midst of the Taal’s eruption.
Netizens have also been actively calling on fellow Filipinos to check on facts and to refrain from sharing old or false news.