ABS-CBN shutdown risks 'pulling plug' on 11,000 jobs: senator

ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 19 2020 11:07 AM | Updated as of May 19 2020 11:18 AM

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MANILA -- The government will "pull the plug on the livelihood" of 11,000 Filipinos if it fails to resolve the broadcast shutdown of ABS-CBN Corp over its stalled franchise operations, a senator said Tuesday. 

ABS-CBN has been losing P30-35 million in advertising revenues daily since regulators forced it off air last May 5, a day after its franchise expired, said Sen. Risa Hontiveros. 

If this "severe financial hemorrhage" continues, ABS-CBN earlier said it "may be constrained to eventually let go of workers, reduce salaries and benefits, and substantially cut down on costs and expenses." 

"If we don't resolve this issue, we would be pulling the plug on the livelihood of the network's 11,000 workers and their families," Hontiveros said at a preliminary hearing on a bill seeking to give the broadcaster a 6-month provisional license. 

"Where will the potentially laid off employees go? Nasa gitna tayo ng isang pandemya at hindi na natin kakayanin kapag nadagdagan pa ang mga manggagawang nawalan ng trabaho at kabuhayan," she said. 

(We are in the middle of a pandemic and we can't make it through if the more Filipinos will lose their jobs and livelihood.) 

The novel coronavirus pandemic so far displaced some 2.5 million workers temporarily or permanently, said the labor department.

ANC, May 19, 2020 

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