NTC’s stop operation order vs ABS-CBN ‘immediately executory’
MANILA, Philippines – The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) cease and desist order (CDO) is immediately executory.
“A CDO is immediately executory but still appealable to the courts,” Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said.
Under NTC rules, Section 5, Part 5: “All orders, decisions or resolutions of the Commission shall take effect immediately and unless there is an appeal, shall become final upon the expiration of 15 days from notice thereof to all parties.”
He said the NTC must have “a very good reason” in ordering the television giant to stop its operation.
Earlier, the NTC sought Guevarra’s legal opinion on the franchise of ABS-CBN.
“The DOJ gave them advice in accordance with law and equity,” Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra told reporters.
“While existing laws provide that a person who wishes to operate a radio/TV station must first obtain a legislative franchise and thereafter a license to operate from the NTC, there is no law that governs the rights and obligations of a person or entity who has already been granted a legislative franchise and has fully operated for many years, has applied for the renewal of its franchise long before the expiration thereof, but for reasons not attributable to said person or entity, the legislature has not yet acted on the renewal of the said franchise,” Guevarra said in an earlier statement.
He said the opinion he gave NTC was similar to the stand of Congress who asserted its “exclusive privilege” in granting or dissolve any legislative franchise including that of ABS-CBN.
The opinion, however, was not followed by the NTC. It has issued a CDO two days after Solicitor General Jose Calida issued its warning against NTC that granting ABS-CBN a provisional authority to operate is risking their prosecution for violating the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.
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