WATCH: Pacquiao thanks House for being fair, giving ABS-CBN due process


Posted at May 14 2020 08:00 PM

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MANILA - Sen. Manny Pacquiao on Thursday thanked the House of Representatives for exercising fairness after it passed on second reading a provisional franchise bill giving ABS-CBN a 6-month temporary permit to broadcast while its renewal bid is still pending in Congress.

"Salamat po dahil nagiging fair tayo dahil ganun din po ang binigay natin sa ibang sitwasyon," Pacquiao said in a video statement, referring to other networks that were allowed to operate beyond the expiry of their franchises.

"Pag hindi natin binigyan ang ABS-CBN, parang magiging biased ang tingin sa atin ng tao," the senator said.

"So maganda yung ginawa natin na bigyan ng provisional authority to air while the process of renewal is pending in Congress," he said.

ABS-CBN, the Philippines' largest broadcast company, is the lone network the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) has ordered shut after the expiration of its franchise, saying the media giant's case was different because there were complaints raised against the network.

The NTC issued a cease and desist order against ABS-CBN last week after it received a letter from Solicitor General Jose Calida saying it should not issue a provisional authority to ABS-CBN. 

Pacquiao said the Constitution guarantees that all entities should be given due process before being closed by the government.

"Due process. Hindi po natin agad huhusgahan. Kailangan idaan po sa due process," he said.

"Kung ito ay i-turn down ng Congress, then that is the time na ipa-close natin yung ABS-CBN pero kung i-approve naman, mas maganda dahil tuloy-tuloy yung airing ng ABS-CBN," he said.

The Senate is expected to tackle ABS-CBN's provisional franchise next week after the House of Representatives passes on third reading House Bill 6732 filed by House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano granting a 6-month temporary franchise.