ABS-CBN News online releases specials on franchise denial commemoration

Arlene Burgos, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 09 2021 12:49 PM | Updated as of Jul 09 2021 04:50 PM

MANILA -- ABS-CBN News Digital is set to unveil a collection of articles about the events and people that shaped how the fate of the Kapamilya Network eventually got decided July 10, 2020 by the lower House. 

Dubbed "Death of a franchise: A year after ABS-CBN's franchise bid was killed," the microsite houses a dozen reports aiming to give the public an exhaustive look at the whos and whats of the denial of ABS-CBN's free-to-air license.
The collection includes: the 70 congressmen who voted to kill the franchise and whom the House of Representatives have not named publicly to this day; the "Brave 11" who voted against the wishes of the President; the long hours of hearings that ended with a rejection; the approval of 85 other franchises that came after; the organic clamor to bring back Channel 2 that has led to the Pirma Kapamilya movement. 

There are also stories on the far-reaching effects of the broadcast shutdown that reverberated in the local television and communication industries, juxtaposed with a story on how some retrenched ABS-CBN employees are getting back on their feet. These show how big picture events could translate and be felt at individual levels. 
In between are the look-back at the various groups who rallied behind the ABS-CBN franchise, and recollections of courageous moments of network executives and glimpses of the long, painful road where employees and supporters stood side-by-side. 


The ABS-CBN News Channel or ANC, meanwhile, kicks off its special programming 7 a.m. Saturday with guests and features for its commemoration of the rejection of the franchise of its parent company. Throughout the day, resource persons and subject matter experts will grace ANC's programs to share their thoughts and experiences as journalists, industry watchers, and stakeholders on the events that led to the failed franchise bid. 

On Friday, TeleRadyo has started carrying interviews from resource persons knowledgeable about the franchise rejection, its effects on journalism and the democratic space in the Philippines, and how it affected ABS-CBN's ability to extend public service. 

The franchise is a privilege or license given Philippine broadcasters to operate. It has to be legislated by Congress' locally elected members, concurred in by nationally elected senators, and signed into law by the president or allowed to lapse into law. 


Meanwhile, journalists and advocacy groups are mounting a series of events to mark the first anniversary of the ABS-CBN franchise rejection. 

The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) ABS-CBN Chapter will have an online forum on Friday, 6 to 8 p.m., which hopes to reexamine the rejection of the franchise renewal, assess its impact, and provide a glimpse into the future of journalism in the country in the wake of the shutdown of ABS-CBN’s broadcast operations.


Discussions in the "Franchise Denied, Press Forward" forum will be led by ABS-CBN News anchors Alvin Elchico and Zen Hernandez. 

Among the confirmed speakers are Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate, Inquirer columnist John Nery, former Supreme Court spokesperson Ted Te, and Rommel Lopez, regional editor of independent news outfit PressOne and lecturer at the De La Salle University.

They will talk about the nature of congressional power to regulate broadcast operations and how the ABS-CBN shutdown has affected access to information and media freedom in the country.

Expected to join the forum are union leaders from ABS-CBN and other labor groups, various university and youth groups. 

The forum will be live streamed on ABS-CBN News' digital platforms and on the Facebook pages of the NUJP ABS-CBN and NUJP. 


Meanwhile, on Saturday, July 10, the NUJP National Directorate will lead a caravan from Batasang Pambansa to Sgt Esguerra St., in front of the ABS-CBN Main Building. 

A short program will be held in front of the Batasang Pambansa around 4:30 p.m. while several speakers are expected during a candle lighting activity at ABS-CBN starting 6 p.m.

-- With report from Sherwin Tinampay, ABS-CBN News