- President Rodrigo Duterte repeatedly threatened to block its franchise renewal
- ABS-CBN’s franchise renewal gained support from different groups as the expiration nears
Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB) incumbent Chairperson Rachel Arenas shared her thoughts about the franchise renewal of ABS-CBN.
She was interviewed by the entertainment press last January 23 at the Delgado 112 resto along Tomas Morato, Quezon City.
Arenas frankly responded, “Tanong niyo yun talaga yan sa akin? No ako, palagay ko kung ano man yan, the truth, it will go through the legal process.”
The franchise renewal bills have been stalled in Congress for years due to President Rodrigo Duterte’s repeated attacks against the network.
Duterte kept on accusing ABS-CBN of swindling him after the network allegedly failed to air his campaign ads.
Knowing Duterte’s repeated threats against the Kapamilya network, Arenas was asked if there is still a chance for its franchise renewal to be granted.
“Talaga? Picture na tayo,” she playfully answered which drew laughter from the press.
ABS-CBN’s franchise is set to expire in March 2020. House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano said that there will be still enough time to tackle ABS-CBN’s franchise renewal bills.
“We have enough time. Yung budget na P4.1 trillion natapos natin ng isang buwan, yun pa kayang franchise na siguro sobrang… yung issues, two-three hearings, sobrang exhaustive na nun,” he said.
The renewal of ABS-CBN’s franchise has been receiving constant support from different groups lately.
Aside from the National Union of Journalists (NUJP), other media organizations also support ABS-CBN’s franchise renewal like AlterMidya, College Editors Guild of the Philippines, National Alliance of Broadcast Union, and the House of Representatives’ Makabayan bloc. There are also 9 bills currently filed in Congress asking to renew ABS-CBN’s franchise.