ABS-CBN once again proved that they haven’t violated any provision of their franchise.
During the franchise hearing on Monday, several gov’t agencies and broadcast organization cleared the issues raised against the Kapamilya network.
On the issue of TV plus raised by the oppositors lead by the three congressmen Rodante Marcoleta, Jesus Crispin Remulla and Mike Defensor together with FICTAP’s Neng Tamano, NTC Chairman Gamaliel Cordoba said ABS-CBN did not violate their franchise in airing 6 channels or programs using the 1 frequency given with their franchise.
According to Cordoba, “Insofar as 6 programs in 1 channel is concerned, okay po yun (they’re okay),” he said.
Cong. Sol Aragones was also able to make Cordoba agree that the 1 franchise,1 frequency provision in the ABS-CBN franchise does not mean 1 channel or just 1 program since digital signal can carry multiple channels/programs in 1 frequency.
Another issue raised by Marcoleta and Remulla was ABS-CBN continues airing of their programs through the frequency of AMCARA Broadcasting or Channel 43 despite expired franchise.
ABS-CBN is currently blocktiming its programs through AMCARA on TV Plus.
Asked if block timing programs of other networks to another is acceptable, Kapisanan ng mga Broadkaster ng Pilipinas (KBP) President Jun Nicdao said it is standard practice.
“Itong practice po ba na bumili ng blocktime ay standard practice. Karaniwan po yung blocktime arrangement sa industriya ng broadcast and it ranges from a few hours to almost the whole day ang arrangements sa blocktime ngayon,” he said.
Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate even mentioned Eat Bulaga as the biggest example of block timer being owned by TAPE Inc. and is being aired on GMA Network.
“[I]sa sa pinakamalaking programa na nagba-blocktime ay ‘yung Eat Bulaga na pagmamay-ari naman ng Television and Production Exponents Inc. (TAPE Inc.) so sila po may sarili silang studio, sarili silang tauhan, mga talents, etcetera, at sila po ay bumibili or nagba-block time. Dati po noon ay sa iba ibang istasyon at ngayon nga ay nasa GMA sila,” Zarate said.
“So pag nagba-blocktime ‘yung TAPE o Eat Bulaga, hindi naman niya pag-aari ‘yung GMA tama po ba ‘yun?” Zarate asked KBP.
“Tama po ‘yung sinabi niyo Cong. Zarate. In the case of TAPE, bumili po sila ng mga 2 o 3 oras [airtime sa GMA] at hindi po sa kanila, they don’t own the station, they just buy the block time,” Nicdao responded.
Aside from TV Plus issues, the hearing has also touched on the labor issues raised against the network.
While the network acknowledged the cases which they lost and are currently pending, ABS-CBN representatives also wanted to note the cases that they have won.
ABS-CBN argued that they are fully compliant with DOLE regulations and that they were given clearance.
And that’s what the DOLE representative has said.
According to DOLE Usec. Ana Dione, based on their recent inspection, ABS-CBN was found to be compliant with all the labor laws.
“ABS-CBN is fully compliant with labor laws. Hindi sya nakitaan ng anumang violations.” she said.
“After finding of being fully compliant with the directive of the department, the network was dropped as a respondent in the matter of inspection conducted in its premises,” she added.