MANILA — Nora Aunor and Vilma Santos are the latest showbiz pillars to speak up against the government shutdown of ABS-CBN, their professional home for a time.
Santos, a House deputy speaker and the current Lipa City representative, said she believes it is only a matter of time before ABS-CBN returns on air.
"Hindi ako magpapaalam dahil alam kong magbabalik kayo! Mabuhay, ABS-CBN," she wrote on Instagram on Tuesday, just as the network ceased its radio and TV operations in compliance with the National Telecommunications Commsision (NTC) order.
Santos, who is also an author of one of several pending bills seeking ABS-CBN's franchise renewal in Congress, earlier said she was "saddened by the development."
"Especially at this time na maraming walang trabaho," she said, referring to the coronavirus crisis. "I still hope the NTC will reconsider its decision and allow ABS-CBN to operate."
Aunor, Santos' contemporary and screen rival in the '70s, similarly expressed her concern over the forced closure of ABS-CBN in a statement on Wednesday.
"Bilang nagtrabaho rin sa ABS-CBN ng marami ring taon mula pa sa radyo hanggang sa telebisyon ay nakaramdam ako ng lungkot sa pagsasara nito," she said.
While Aunor is currently a contract artists of rival network GMA-7, as she noted in her statement, she said, "Naisip ko ang mga taong maaapektuhan sa pangyayaring ito."
"Naniniwala ako na sa panahong ito ay dapat magmalasakitan ang bawat isa, Kapuso man o Kapamilya," she said.
Aunor brought up the livelihood of some 11,000 employees that have been put in jeopardy because of the government order.
"Alam kong maraming mga empleyado ng kumpanya na mawawalan ng trabaho at kawawa ang kanilang mga pamilya na umaasa lamang sa network. At sana hindi ito nangyari sa panahong dumadaan tayo sa krisis dulot ng COVID-19," she said.
Aunor, like Santos, is nonetheless hopeful that ABS-CBN will return to continue being of service to Filipinos.
"Ako ay lubos na umaasa na malalagpasan ng ABS-CBN ang suliraning ito na dumating sa kanila. Sana ay muling makapagtrabaho ang kanilang mga talent, empleyado lalo na 'yung mga maliliit na manggagawa nila," she said.