House sends letter urging NTC to grant provisional authority to ABS-CBN
MANILA, Philippines — House leaders on Wednesday sent a letter to the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) urging it to grant media giant ABS-CBN provisional authority to operate, effective on May 4, 2020, “until such time that the House of Representatives/Congress has made a decision on its application.”
The letter — addressed to NTC Commissioner Gamaliel Cordoba — signed by Palawan Rep. Franz Alvarez, chair of the House Committee on Legislative Franchises and House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano.
Cayetano and Alvarez also urged the NTC to grant the same provisional authority to the subsidiaries of ABS-CBN Corp. — such as ABS-CBN Convergence, Inc., Sky Cable Corp., and Amcara Broadcasting Network, Inc.
The subsidiaries and affiliates also have pending franchise renewal applications before the House Committee on Legislative Franchises.
“Please include in their respective provisional authorities terms and conditions you deem appropriate to protect public interest consistent with applicable laws, rules, and regulations,” the letter states.
Last Monday, at the Senate hearing on ABS-CBN’s franchise, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said the network’s franchise would expire on May 4 and not on March 30 as initially reported.
On Monday, the House Committee on Legislative Franchises formally started the proceedings to tackle measures seeking the renewal of ABS-CBN’s franchise by asking stakeholders – both for and against the franchise renewal – to submit their position papers.
However, public hearings to tackle the issue have yet to be set.
Alvarez earlier said his committee would probably tackle the measures between May and August.
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