Provincial governor gets ‘edited out’ in pubmat announcing free basic photoshop class

July 2, 2021 - 5:05 PM
Computer user
Stock photo of a person using a computer. (Pixabay/user hitesh0141)

A publication material of a free basic photoshop online class by a college in Naga City was edited by social media users after they noticed a large image of a local official on the post.

The Southeast Asian Institute of Computer Technology (SEAict) on Thursday announced on Facebook that it would offer a 40-hour basic Adobe Photoshop class from July 5 to 16, 2021 every weekday morning.

Adobe Photoshop is known as a predominant photo editing and manipulation software.

Those interested to participate in the free class must have their own desktop computers or laptops, a stable internet connection, have a basic knowledge of operating a computer and a picture of a scanned copy of a valid ID and barangay and birth certificate.

While the class was welcomed by Filipinos, some noticed that the pubmat included a picture of Camarines Sur Governor Migz Villafuerte beside the announcement.

Photoshop Class
A screengrab of a free basic photoshop class by Southeast Asian Institute of Computer Technology. (Screengrab by Interaksyon from Facebook via Southeast Asian Institute of Computer Technology SEAict)

“Online teacher na po ba si Migz?” a Facebook user quipped with a rolling-on-the-floor laughing emoji.

“Sana ituro po kung pano tanggalin ang epal sa mga post ta’s re upload para mas maganda,” another online user commented.

“Magandang offer kaso tano may epal? HAHAHA,” exclaimed a different Filipino.

Others initiated to edit the pubmat to remove the public official’s picture.

“Parang po kasi may mali kaya inayos ko na. PS: Basic cropping in Photoshop,” a Facebook user wrote with an accompanying photo of his edit.

Based on its other Facebook posts, SEAict is also offering other free online classes on basic computer operation and introduction to web development, among others.

The posts also feature Villafuerte’s photo.

A look at SEAict’s Facebook page reveals a cover photo uploaded last year with the words “Camarines Sur Development through Free Education.”

It added that it is a special project of the governor.

According to the Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA), the anti-epal provision or General Provision 82 of the adopted 2021 National Budget prohibits government officials from self-promotion acts.

“Under the Anti-Epal provision, government officials, whether elected or appointed, are banned from self-promotion through placement of names, pictures, or otherwise on programs, projects, and any other initiatives that are funded by the government through the General Appropriations Act,” ARTA said.

The provision was authored by Sen. Grace Poe, who said that it is taxpayers who “fund the projects and programs” of the government.

“Public officials, whether elected or appointed, should not make it appear that their constituents owe them gratitude for the projects,” she was quoted as saying last January.

The legislation dubbed the “anti-epal bill,” most recently filed in Congress in 2019, also seeks to prohibit and penalize politicians who post their names and faces on public projects.