“Labis na ikinalulungkot at ikinababahala.”
That was how the Talents Association of GMA Network (TAG), began their statement over House of Representatives’ panel’s decision not to grant broadcast giant ABS-CBN Corp. a fresh 25-year broadcasting franchise.
“Labis na ikinalulungkot at ikinababahala ng mga kasapi ng Talents Association of GMA Network (TAG) ang hindi pag-renew sa prangkisa ng ABS-CBN,” the statement said.
After 12 tedious hearings, some lasting until midnight, House lawmakers on Friday voted to deny media giant ABS-CBN Corp.’s bid for a new 25-year broadcasting franchise.
The House Committee on Legislative Franchises voted 70-11, with two inhibitions and one abstention.
“Sa kabila ng maraming panawagan, isinantabi ng 70 mambabatas ang posibilidad na mawalan ng kabuhayan ang 11,000 na kawani ng kumpanya, habang nasa gitna tayo ng pandemya at kawalang-katiyakan sa suporta ng gobyerno sa mga mawawalan ng trabaho,” it added.
TAG, the association of 101 workers of broadcaster GMA Network, won their regularization case against the network at the Court of Appeals (CA).
The labor practices of ABS-CBN was heavily scrutinized during the 12 hearings conducted by the House Committee on Legislative Franchises on the network’s franchise renewal.
When GMA Network’s franchise was renewed, the network’s labor practices were not raised nor investigated by the same House committee. President Rodrigo Duterte signed into law Republic Act No 10925 giving GMA its fresh 25-year franchise.
“Sa lahat ng panahon, hindi namin tatalikuran ang aming mga kasama sa midya na walang hangad kung hindi ang maglahad ng katotohanan sa pagbabalita, magbigay-aliw sa mga manonood at magpatuloy sa paglilingkod sa mga Filipino.
Patuloy tayong titindig sa demokrasya.
Ipaglalaban ang kalayaan sa pamamahayag.
At kasamang huhusga sa hinaharap ng mga taksil sa bayan.
Kaisa ninyo kami sa labang ito, Kapamilya.
The denial of its new franchise puts at risk the jobs of some 11,000 workers under the ABS-CBN group of companies amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“Hindi natatapos dito ang laban,” ABS-CBN News said in a tweet.
The embattled network has 24 hours to appeal the decision. (Rommel F. Lopez)