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News anchor Julius Babao shows frustration over NTC’s Cease and Desist order on Twitter

“COVID-19 ang kalaban. Hindi ang ABS-CBN.”

On May 5, 2020, the National Telecommunications Commission ordered ABS-CBN to shut down all its channels and radio stations with a cease and desist order after its franchise expired on May 4.

While the NTC allows for other networks to continue operations while the franchise renewal is still being processed, it did not allow ABS-CBN to do the same.

News anchor and DZMM reporter Julius Babao showed his outrage and disapproval of the government’s politically motivated actions.

Right after ABS-CBN signed off, he posted his criticism of the government and NTC’s decision that forcefully shutdown the giant media network.

Julius posted, “COVID-19 ang kalaban. Hindi ang ABS-CBN.”

He next tweeted a photo of crabs, as if indirectly saying that National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) has a crab mentality, “SA MGA TAGA NTC PARA SA INYO ITO. Magpakabusog kayo!”

Last March, the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) announced that it will issue a provisional authority to allow ABS-CBN and its subsidiaries to operate until June 2022, while Congress continues to deliberate on the renewal of its franchise.

After obtaining resolutions from the Senate and the House of Representatives, the NTC will grant a provisional permit, Edgardo Cabarios, Deputy Commissioner, told reporters then.

“Ang advice kasi ngayon is kapag may concurrent resolution, then we can issue the provisional authority, up to now, yun ang advice, so yes… unless we are restrained by the court.

The NTC broke its promise to let ABS-CBN continue to operate and instead ordered it to shut down.

“#NTC Nangako na kayo sa Kongreso at Senado na bibigyan ninyo ng Provisional Permit to operate ang ABS-CBN. Para sa ating mga Pilipino mahalaga ang mangako. Pasensya na sa kababaihan ang tawag kasi natin dyan ay ‘Usapang Lalaki’. Alam ng mga tatay at nanay ninyo yan.”

The NTC gave in to pressure from Solicitor General Jose Calida who warned the agency leaders of possible graft charges.

Julius was also dismayed that some Filipinos were pleased with NTC’s Cease and Desist order.

As of now, the abrupt shutdown of ABS-CBN covers five AM stations, including DZMM, 18 FM stations, and 42 TV stations, including Channels 2 and 23.


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