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Betrayed by NTC? Senators see no need to summon execs over ABS-CBN’s closure

By: - Reporter / @MAgerINQ
/ 05:07 PM May 06, 2020

MANILA, Philippines—  Senators are no longer keen on summoning the officials of the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) to a hearing even as one felt a “sense of betrayal” when it ordered the closure of ABS-CBN.

After all, Senate   President   Vicente  “Tito “ Sotto III believes that the NTC’s order to shut down ABS-CBN  is already “self-explanatory”  since the network’s franchise already lapsed on May 4.

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“Anong makukuha namin dun e self explanatory ang sinasabi nila?” Sotto said in an online interview with reporters on Wednesday.

(What can we get from them  when what they are saying is already  self-explanatory.)

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“I doubt it because I know the answer. Ang isasagot sa amin,  e expired e,  expired yung franchise. Yun lang sasagot nun.  Pag hindi sila kumilos  sila ang babalikan ng neglect of duty, ganun ang sasabihin nun…,”  he added.

(I doubt it because I know the answer. Their answer would be, the franchise has already expired. That would be their only answer. If they did not  act, they’d be  accused of neglect of duty, that’s what they would say.)

While saddened by the ABS-CBN’s’ closure,  Sotto said he would not say that the NTC  was at fault as it was just doing its job.

“I’m not in a position to say na maling-mali (it was wrong) because as far as the NTC is concerned they are doing their job,” the Senate leader stressed.

For her part, Senator Nancy Binay said it would be a “waste of time”  to summon the NTC officials to a Senate hearing.

She recalled that before the Senate took a break in March,  they even had a photo taken when they handed to an NTC commissioner a resolution, authorizing the Commission to grant ABS-CBN and its subsidiaries provisional permit to operate while Congress tackles the network’s franchise renewal.

“Kaya nga nakakagulat na nasa ganitong sitwasyon tayo e (That’s why it’s shocking that we’re in this situation),”  Binay said in another interview.

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“Parang may sense of betrayal kasi nakakagulat yung timing e…”  she added, noting that the closure order came at a time the country is grappling with the coronavirus disease.

Senator Sonny Angara said there is no longer   need for  NTC to explain as it has already made its decision.

“What for? You think, magbabago yung desisyon nila pag ipinatawag namin? Palagay ko hindi,” Angara said in another interview.

(What for? Do you think they will change their decision if we summon them? I don’t think  so)

“Paliwanag ba ang gusto natin o gusto nating maibalik ang ABS-CBN? I don’t think there’s anything to explain…”  he said, noting that during  Senate hearings there were clear sentiments against shutting down   ABS-CBN.

(Do we want an explanation or do we want  ABS-CBN to return? I don’t think there’s anything to explain…)

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TAGS: ABS-CBN, Legislation, media franchise, NTC, Senate
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