VERA FILES FACT CHECK: Video MISLEADINGLY claims Filipinos ‘aged 40 and above can now receive pension’ 

April 11, 2023


A video circulating on Facebook (FB) and YouTube carried a misleading headline that insinuates that the general Filipino public can start receiving their pensions as early as 40 years old.

No such announcement was made during the March 28 press briefing where the clips used in the circulating post were taken from. 

Published the same day as the briefing, the misleading 25-minute and 20-second video bore the headline: 

“GOOD NEWS AGE 40 PATAAS PWEDE NA MAGPENSYON (AGE 40 AND ABOVE CAN NOW RECEIVE PENSION) WOW PINAKAMALAKING BANGKO SA PILIPINAS PBBM BINUBUO NA (PBBM IS NOW CREATING THE BIGGEST BANK IN THE PHILIPPINES) Live Today.” 

It showed spliced clips of Finance secretary Benjamin Diokno at a March 28 Palace press conference where he talked about the proposed reforms in the retirement and pension system for military and uniformed personnel (MUP). 

Neither Diokno nor any government official said all Filipinos can now receive pensions at the age of 40. The headline twisted what the Finance secretary pointed out in the briefing.

Diokno only said that under the current system, MUP receive their pension after 20 years of service. As such, there are some personnel who retire as early as 40 years old and get their pension until they are 90 years old or until they die.

He called this ridiculous and financially unsustainable, and said reforms must be made to avoid fiscal collapse.

Diokno said President Ferdinand Marcos supports the proposed new pension scheme that mandates MUP receive theirs at 57 years old, and not automatically after serving for 20 years.

On the other hand, the optional retirement age is 60 years old and the compulsory retirement age is 65 years old for those under the Government Service Insurance System and the Social Security System.

The whole briefing was shown in the misleading post but some netizens believed that they may now get their pension at an earlier age and thanked Marcos in the comment section.

At least eight FB pages including Philippines Training New (created on July 11, 2022), Duterte Info News (Aug. 28, 2022) and BBM-Sara Uniteam. (Sept. 5, 2022) posted the video collectively garnering 497 interactions according to the social media monitoring tool CrowdTangle. YouTube channel PweDelie TV (April 12, 2015) also uploaded the video which has 303,720 views as of writing.

Have you seen any dubious claims, photos, memes, or online posts that you want us to verify? Fill out this reader request form or send it to ‘VERA, the truth bot’ on Viber.

(Editor’s Note: VERA Files has partnered with Facebook to fight the spread of disinformation. Find out more about this partnership and our methodology.)



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VERA Files

VERA Files is a nonstock, nonprofit, independent media organization. Founded in March 2008, it is published by veteran Filipino journalists taking a deeper look into current Philippine issues. Vera is Latin for “true.”

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