Is Salvador Panelo questioning ABS-CBN’s deal with Zoe TV?

Published November 24, 2020, 12:32 PM

by Neil Ramos

There’s trouble looming on the horizon for ABS-CBN several weeks after its seeming resurgence via a block time deal with Eddie Villanueva’s Zoe Broadcasting Network Inc. (ZBNI), that resulted in A2Z Channel 11.

The partnership marked the return of some of the beleaguered network’s programs on free TV and this has seemingly earned unwanted notice from the powers that be.

Among those taking issue on the agreement is presidential legal counsel, Salvador Panelo, who believes there might be something irregular concerning the transaction.

Salvador Panelo

He was supposedly quoted as saying in a Facebook post of the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO): “Kapag meron kang franchise, hindi mo puwedeng i-lease, ipagamit, ipagbili, or ipagamit na walang permiso ang NTC (National Telecommunications Commission).”

“Mukhang tinitignan ng mga kongresista kung ito ay paglabag. Kasi nga naman meron bang blocktime na labing walong oras? Eh parang lease yun,” he added. 

Indeed, Panelo isn’t the first to question the deal.

Earlier this month, newly-elected House minority leader, Abang Lingkod Partylist Rep. Joseph Stephen Paduano, also aired a similar comment on the matter, saying, “There are legal issues about it.”

Rep. Joseph Stephen Paduano

He didn’t actually detail what these issues are but he hinted the NTC might just investigate the deal soon.

“Tingnan na lang natin kung ano mangyayari diyan,” he added.

ABS-CBN as with ZBNI are yet to comment on the issue as of this writing.