Combating ‘Momo’: Students burn effigy of viral suicide scare

Police in Butuan led students in burning a ‘Momo’ effigy, in efforts to dispel fears brought by the viral suicide scare.

The effigy was burned during a flag raising ceremony in Libertad Elementary School, Butuan City in Caraga region, police said Monday.

“Hindi siya totoo at hindi dapat katakutan ng mga bata, kaya sinunog yan sa harapan nila at mismong ang mga estudyante ang sumunog, para ipakita na sila ang nasa upperhand na mawala ang takot nila,” CARAGA Regional Director, Police Brigadier General Gilbert Cruz said.

(Momo is not real and should not be feared. That’s why the effigy was burned in front of them so they will no longer fear it.)

Cruz said they had a case where a 10-year-old student was traumatized after playing the Momo app.

PNP also reminded parents and guardians to monitor children’s internet use.

Police said people can also report any incident related to the “Momo Challenge” by calling the PNP ACG hotline 414-1560 or by visiting the nearest regional Anti-Cybercrime Unit located in police stations nationwide.

HOAX OR NOT?

Parents from all over the world have raised the alarm about a so-called “Momo Challenge,” which allegedly caused a few children to harm themselves.

Authorities investigated the reports, with one death in the Philippines supposedly linked to the challenge.

However, some fact checking groups and organizations said the challenge was a hoax.

But whether it was a hoax or not, parenting and security experts saw the viral story as an opportunity to discuss measures to protect children from dangerous online content.

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