Former Miss Universe Catriona Gray on Wednesday reminded everyone, especially public figures, to “research and fact-check” before making public statements.
Gray made the statement after she, along with actresses Liza Soberano and Angel Locsin, were warned by National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF ELCAC) Spokesperson Lt. General Antonio Parlade to stop supporting groups like Gabriela.
In an interview with ANC, the beauty queen clarified she is not affiliated with Gabriela nor did she participate in any activity of the group.
“I know the groups that I work with. With all respect to Gen. Parlade and also to the Gabriela group, I have not done any projects…with them,” Gray said.
“I want people to know that when I am an ambassadress, I don’t just link my name to an organization without knowing exactly what that group does, the projects that they are involved in,” the former Miss Universe added.
Gray said her “takeaway” from the whole red-tagging issue she was dragged in was that in this age of misinformation, people should “be careful on what information to take as truth and also to fact-check and research before making public statements.”
The 2018 Miss Universe said Parlade has sent a personal letter of apology to her.
“I appreciate that he really reached out because it gave me clarification on my end also from the surprise that I felt,” she said.
She however said that Parlade could’ve issued his warning differently, in a way that will not cause concern.
“I think it’s always good to listen to advice, however, I felt that there’s a proper way to give guidance, to give warnings, to give advice,” she said.
“I hope going forward if there were any warnings to give or advice to give, it would be done in the proper means which I feel is contact directly to the group or individual to let your concerns be known,” she added.
Gray also said people should avoid red-tagging without presenting clear evidence or basis.
“With red-tagging, it’s very difficult because you can construe someone in a certain light and I feel that there should be evidence given or basis given for that tag, for that accusation,” she said.
“As with me, there was no actual connection for me and that with the Gabriela organization. So that one is an example of what could happen if proper evidence is not given or proper basis is not presented,” she added.