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Panelo: Duterte's threats vs ABS-CBN not literal

Ratziel San Juan - Philstar.com
Panelo: Duterte's threats vs ABS-CBN not literal
Agosto 2018 nang sabihin ni Digong na hindi niya ipare-renew ang prangkisa ng ABS-CBN kung siya ang masusunod dahil sa hindi pag-eere ng kanyang mga patalastas habang tumatakbo pa sa pagkapresidente. 
Presidential Photo

MANILA, Philippines — Presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo on Friday said that President Rodrigo Duterte’s repeated threats against media network ABS-CBN are not to be taken seriously.

“You know, the president made utterances against ABS-CBN. He made certain statements like 'I'll shut down.' But hindi naman literal 'yun eh (that’s not even literal). He wants to shut down the fraudulent practices of your network,” Panelo said in an interview with ANC.

The spokesman cited Duterte’s complaint that the network failed to air political ads that had been paid for.

“You cannot deprive this man from expressing his displeasure, or disgust, or anger when he is a victim of fraud... Pero walang kinalaman 'yun sa pag-grant or pag-renew (but that has nothing to do with the granting or renewal of ABS-CBN’s franchise) because that is the job of Congress.”

Consistent threats

Whether the media network’s operations will continue after the franchise expires after March 30 is still in question, with just a little over a month left for Congress to pass the required legislation.

A congressional franchise bill needs to be approved by the House of Representatives before it is transmitted to the Senate. The version of the bill approved by both chambers would then still need the president’s approval.

RELATED: What are ABS-CBN’s chances of renewing its franchise?

Duterte, however, has repeatedly criticized ABS-CBN and stated that he is determined to block the renewal of its franchise.

Ang inyong franchise mag-end (your franchise will end) next year. If you are expecting na ma-renew 'yan (its renewal), I'm sorry. You're out. I will see to it that you're out,” the president said in December 2019.

RELATED: Ika-3 banta ni Duterte sa ABS-CBN maaring dahil sa 'drug war' coverage — watchdog

Previously, the president said he disapproves of the renewal of the media company’s franchise but would not meddle in renewal talks.

“Now, ABS-CBN, their franchise is due for renewal... But I will never also intervene. But if I had my way, I will not give it back to you,” Duterte said in August 2018.

RELATED: Duterte: If I had my way, I won't renew ABS-CBN's franchise

In May 2017, Duterte also threatened to file charges of multiple syndicated estafa against the network over the mentioned political advertisements.

“Then money came, I pleaded to you because I did not have the money, I did not have any historical propaganda TV. I said, ‘Could you accommodate it?’” Duterte said, referring to ABS-CBN.

RELATED: Duterte to file multiple syndicated estafa vs ABS-CBN

Waiting game

Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano said that the House of Representatives may wait until August before tackling legislation on ABS-CBN's congressional franchise renewal.

He said that the media network would still be allowed to operate beyond its term which will end on March 30, as long as the House is deliberating bills on its franchise.

RELATED: NTC asks DOJ: Can ABS-CBN operate sans franchise?

However, Congress is usually occupied on the national budget following the presidential State of the Nation Address in July yearly.

Moreover, with the term-sharing agreement between Cayetano and Marinduque Rep. Lord Allan Jay Velasco (Marinduque), brokered by the president himself, the lower chamber could see a change in leadership by October.

RELATED: Palace leaves K-12 review, speakership issues 'to the wisdom of Congress'

ABS-CBN ABS-CBN FRANCHISE ALAN PETER CAYETANO RODRIGO DUTERTE SALVADOR PANELO
As It Happens
LATEST UPDATE: January 27, 2021 - 3:35pm

ABS-CBN Corp. stopped broadcasting on its TV and radio stations on May 5, 2020 after the National Telecommunications Commission issued a cease and desist order. The network's franchise had lapsed on May 4 without action by the House of Representatives.

January 27, 2021 - 3:35pm

Rep. Mike Defensor (Anakalusugan Party-list) attempts to put the ABS-CBN franchise up for a vote in the plenary, saying it should be taken up as it is in the House's unfinished business.

The House rejects his motion, but he appeals this. House leaders later on commit to begin tackling its unfinished business beginning Monday. —  Xave Gregorio

January 18, 2021 - 3:38pm

Rep. Vilma Santos-Recto (Batangas) has filed a bill seeking the renewal of the franchise granted to broadcast giant ABS-CBN.

Senate President Vicente Sotto III earlier filed a similar bill at the Senate, saying a majority of Filipinos get their news primarily from TV. 

Franchise bills emanate from the House of Representatives.

January 5, 2021 - 8:00pm

Malacañang is leaving it up to Congress to decide on the new bill seeking to renew the franchise of television network ABS-CBN, which was forced to lay off thousands of workers after its franchise expired last May. 

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque disagreed, saying the fate of the bill depends on lawmakers. 

"Well, again, I beg to differ; that is a sole constitutional prerogative of Congress which must originate from the House of Representatives," Roque says at a press briefing. —  Alexis Romero

January 4, 2021 - 4:53pm

Senate President Tito Sotto files a bill renewing the franchise of broadcast giant ABS-CBN, which went off the air in May.

Sotto's bill seeks to renew the franchise of ABS-CBN Corporation, which expired in March 2020, to another 25 years.

"ABS-CBN's wide reach to Filipinos, alongside with the undeniable advantages of broadcast media relative to mass communication, definitely calls for the immediate renewal of the network's franchise," Sotto says in his bill.

October 6, 2020 - 2:27pm

Broadcast giant ABS-CBN Corp. is returning to free TV starting Saturday after striking a deal with Zoe Broadcasting Network Inc. 

The network announces that "some entertainment shows and movies" it produces will be aired in the "rebranded" A2Z channel 11, formerly Zoe TV, the free TV channel of Jesus Is Lord Church led and founded by Eddie Villanueva.

"A2Z channel 11 will be seen on analog TV in Metro Manila and nearby provinces," the network says.

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