MULTIMEDIA

Down but not out, ABS-CBN employees and supporters unite in fight for franchise

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 11 2020 01:05 AM | Updated as of Jul 11 2020 01:36 AM

On Friday, 70 members and ex officio members of the House committee on legislative franchises voted to adopt the panel’s technical working group’s (TWG) 40-page report written overnight denying ABS-CBN’s franchise application.

According to the report, the broadcast network violated its old franchise which included issues against former Chairman Eugenio Lopez’s citizenship, labor laws, the issuance of Philippine Deposit Receipts, and tax violations

The TWG also alleged that ABS-CBN cannot invoke freedom of the press, which is enshrined in the constitution, in its bid for a franchise. “By no means can this franchise application be related to press freedom. If it were so, then all applicants for legislative franchises covering mass media could simply claim such freedom and force the hand of this Committee each time,” it said.

The denial of the franchise means the closure of the network’s free-to-air TV and radio operations putting the jobs of its employees in peril, adding to the country’s unemployment.

The news sent shockwaves throughout the media community, particularly to the employees of the embattled network, with many being overcome with emotions.

In a show of defiance and refusing to be cowed, employees and supporters gathered outside the network’s headquarters in Quezon City for a candle-lighting ceremony.

Here are some scenes from the event.

A teleprompter shows the script of the network’s coverage of the House hearing on Friday. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN news

Employees console each other after hearing the House panel’s decision. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News

The ABS-CBN newsroom is full of stunned employees after 70 congressmen voted to deny the network’s franchise application. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News

Employees watch the hearing on the ABS-CBN franchise renewal application inside the broadcast network's headquarters in Quezon City. Basilio H. Sepe, ABS-CBN News

Employees and journalists react to the House panel’s decision inside the newsroom. Basilio H. Sepe, ABS-CBN News

Employees and supporters react to the news, as they gather outside ABS-CBN headquarters on Friday. Jire Carreon, ABS-CBN News

Actress Angel Locsin joins supporters of ABS-CBN at a solidarity event outside the network's headquarters. Larry Monserate Piojo, ABS-CBN News

A supporter holds a ribbon with the ABS-CBN colors outside, as people gather in support outside the network’s complex in Quezon City. Larry Monserate Piojo, ABS-CBN News

People begin to gather outside the network’s headquarters in a show of support. Jire Carreon, ABS-CBN News

A supporter raises her fist in support of the network after its franchise application was rejected by the House panel. Jire Carreon, ABS-CBN News

ABS-CBN employees hug each other after Congress denied the network’s application for the renewal of its franchise on Friday. Michael Bagtas, ABS-CBN news

ABS-CBN journalist Doris Bigornia reacts to the news on Friday. Michael Bagtas, ABS-CBN News

Cory Vidanes (right), executive and Chief Operating Officer for Broadcast of ABS-CBN Corp., comforts TV reporter Chiara Zambrano (left) after watching the hearing on the ABS-CBN franchise renewal inside the broadcasting network's headquarters. Basilio H. Sepe, ABS-CBN News

"TV Patrol" continues to deliver the news even after hearing about the House panel’s decision to deny the network a franchise. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News

"TV Patrol" continues to deliver the news even after hearing about the House panel’s decision to deny the network a franchise. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News

ABS CBN Publishing head Ernie Lopez speaks during the solidarity event outside the ABS-CBN Broadcasting center. GigIe Cruz, ABS-CBN News

ABS-CBN employees and supporters gather outside the network’s headquarters for a solidarity event. Gigie Cruz, ABS-CBN News

ABS-CBN employees and supporters gather outside the network’s headquarters for a solidarity event. Gigie Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Employees and supporters light candles as a show of support for ABS-CBN. Jire Carreon, ABS-CBN News

Employees and supporters light candles as a show of support for ABS-CBN. Jire Carreon, ABS-CBN News

Actress Maja Salvador speaks during the event. Gigie Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Angel Locsin gives a speech during the event. Jire Carreon, ABS-CBN News

ABS-CBN Integrated News and Current Affairs head Ging Reyes joins other ABS-CBN employees during a candle lighting at the ABS-CBN headquarters after the denial of the legislative franchise on Friday. Fernando G. Sepe Jr.

ABC CBN Executives COO Cory Vidanes, Chairman Mark Lopez and President and CEO Carlo L. Katigbak greet ABS-CBN employees and supporters during the candle lighting and solidarity event at Sgt. Esguerra on Friday. Gigie Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Employees and supporters raise their fists outside the ABS-CBN headquarters during the solidarity event. Jire Carreon, ABS-CBN News