President Rodrigo Duterte unleashed a fresh tirade directed at ABS-CBN just days after Congress rejected its bid for franchise renewal.
In the 40-minute audio recording of the entire speech acquired by the Inquirer, President Rodrigo Duterte took a swipe at ABS-CBN when he was lamenting how Ayala-owned Manila Water and Manny Pangilinan allegedly milked the Filipinos with billions of pesos for years.
“’Yun namang ABS-CBN binaboy ako. Pero sinabi ko kapag ako nanalo, bubuwagin ko ang oligarchy ng Pilipinas. Ginawa ko. Without declaring martial law, sinira ko yung mga tao na humahawak sa ekonomiya at umiipit sa tao at hindi nagbabayad. They take advantage, sa kanila political power.”
The President also claimed that ABS-CBN got its equipment tax-free. He also accused the network of having holding firms outside the country and misreporting the land area of its compound on Mother Ignacia Avenue in Quezon City.
“Tapos may mga holding company sa labas. Ganun din. Ano yung, ano yung inano nila ni Marcos. Sila rin. Cayman, tapos may holding company sa Hungary, dun nila binubuhos. Kunwari, may ano sila, may investment sila dun. Padala sila ng pera. Pero yung investment na yan, wala na. ‘Yung pera hindi na yan babalik. Kaya walang taxes. And to think that they talk and they play God over the lives of the Filipino. Kaya ako, wala akong ano.”
Duterte’s fresh tirades towards ABS-CBN disproves what Malacañang was insisting that the President is “neutral” on the issue of ABS-CBN, citing how the other businesses of the Lopez family remain in operation.
“Of course he’s (Duterte) neutral because the Lopezes are still up and about. They have FirstGen, they have Rockwell, they have other business and obviously, ‘yung sinabi niya about the oligarchs did not actually happen to the Lopezes,”
But looking back on Duterte’s past remarks, this only demonstrates that the tragic shutdown is politically motivated.
The President has repeatedly said that he will ensure that ABS-CBN does not have a franchise in 2020.
“Ikaw ABS-CBN, ang iyong franchise mag end next year. You are expecting ma-renew yan? I’m sorry. You’re out. I will see to it that you’re out,” the president said.
And during a speech on December 30, 2019, he advised ABS-CBN to just sell the company,
“Itong ABS mag expire ang contract ninyo, mag renew kayo, ewan ko lang ano mangyayari. Ako pa sayo ipagbili na ninyo yan.”
Unfortunately, last July 10 in a vote of 70 against 11, ABS-CBN failed to win the votes of the legislative franchise committee members.
ABS-CBN’s bid for a new franchise was rejected which effectively shuts down the country’s largest media network.