“If the holder of a franchise applied for its renewal before it expired, the license to operate would be deemed extended until it is expressly denied or granted.”
This is the exact statement of Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas legal counsel and spokesperson Atty. Rudolph Jularbal in a phone interview with Ted Failon.
According to Jularbal, in the history of KBP, Congress has never denied the franchise renewal application of any stations or KBP members. For as long as the station filed an application of franchise renewal, the Congress will eventually release its renewal.
“Sa renewal wala kaming alam na deny, pwedeng naabutan ng adjournment ng Congress, pero pag na-file nila eventually it’s granted.”
Furthermore, the KBP has been making initiatives to help the giant network to obtain its franchise renewal but, it all boils down to the Congress, as it must also do its responsibilities.
Jularbal said, “The board is meeting on that, in fact you will be trusting our statement but even before this, the board has been making initiatives in different venues to help its members including ABS-CBN but include initiatives in Congress.”
If ABS-CBN franchise expires, these are the options for the network.
If the network’s franchise expires before the Congress has approved its renewal, Jularbal stated that ABS-CBN can still run but act as a content provider in different platforms. As a content provider, ABS-CBN has the option to go on air on digital or other broadcasting platforms.
ABS-CBN can approach different TV stations and submit their series on these channels as a “block timer.”
He continued, “May na-file na application for renewal as I’ve stated earlier, this is deemed extended if it’s not acted on. Especially Congress will just be on recess, but assuming for the sake of discussion na-deny or hind inga na-renew yung application for renewal, a company can act as a content provider and provide content in different platforms whether digital or broadcast platform. Matagal na ‘yan nangyayari mga block timer, content provider ‘yun and they are allowed to provide content in TV even in radio. ABS-CBN is no different, I think if you look into the franchise or rather the corporate papers of ABS-CBN, andun na si content provider. It can operate, pwedeng sa ibang network, mag content provider ang ABS-CBN, ‘yung ibang teleserye nila don nila i-broadcast, pwede ‘yon. In a different digital frequency marami naman channels na ngayon, station. ABS-CBN can be a content provider, and that is also true on digital moreso, kasi hindi kailangan ng prangkisa to post content in the digital platform, pwedeng-pwede ‘yon.”
Aside from the delaying tactics of the Congress to hear several bills filed in seeking to renew the ABS-CBN franchise renewal, SolGen Jose Calida filed a petition with the Supreme Court to terminate the network’s existing franchise immediately due to ‘highly abusive practices’ and alleged ‘foreign investors’ to have part of ownership of a Philippine mass media entity.