Senators urge House: Act on ABS-CBN franchise

Published May 6, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Hannah Torregoza

Some senators called on fellow lawmakers at the House of Representatives to finally act on the measure granting a new franchise to the ABS-CBN Corporation.

Sen. Risa Hontiveros (Senate of the Philippines / MANILA BULLETIN)
Sen. Risa Hontiveros
(Senate of the Philippines / MANILA BULLETIN)

Sen. Juan Edgardo “Sonny” Angara, in his social media account, urged House lawmakers to finally “make it happen.”

“Standing on ABS-CBN in the time of pandemic. C’mon congressmen, make it happen, please,” Angara said.

Angara said lawmakers should bear in mind that “thousands of families will lose jobs and incomes.”

“Millions of Filipinos (are) going crazy stuck at home will lose a source of entertainment and life-saving information,” Angara pointed out.

“If there are shortcomings, then fine or punish the wrongdoers but this is clearly not right,” he stressed.

In a Twitter post, Senator Nancy Binay said she hopes congressmen will find their voice.

“To my friends sa may Batasan, hope you can find your voice,” she wrote.

Sen. Risa Hontiveros, for her part, said she finds the shutdown of ABS-CBN’s operations both saddening and outrageous.

“It is both saddening and outrageous that only two days after World Press Freedom Day, a government agency orders the shutdown of one of the country’s top broadcast network amid the COVID-19 pandemic,” Hontiveros said.

Hontiveros said the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) has a lot of explaining to do not only to the Senate and the House of Representatives, but also to the Filipino public suddenly deprived of a crucial means of receiving information during this crisis, and the 11,000 workers of ABS-CBN whose livelihood has been abruptly put in jeopardy.

Read more: NTC orders ABS-CBN to stop operations