Congress declared itself ‘enemy of democracy’ in denying ABS-CBN franchise — NUJP
MANILA, Philippines — The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) on Friday said the House of representatives has declared itself an “enemy of democracy” following the denial of a House panel of ABS-CBN’s bid for a fresh 25-year franchise.
“Today, July 10, 2020, the House of Representatives of the 18th Congress of the Philippines has declared itself an enemy of democracy,” NUJP said in a statement.
“Today, this chamber has lost all claim to represent the people and our interests,” it added.
Voting 70-11, the House committee on legislative franchises denied the consolidated bills which would have granted the embattled media giant a new congressional franchise to resume its broadcast operations.
The NUJP said Congress did not only strip over 11,000 Filipinos of their jobs but also deprived millions of their “right to know and their right to choose how to access the information they need to decide on their futures as well as the entertainment that allows them a respite from the hardships of life.”
However, the group urged the public not to mark July 10, 2020, as a day of defeat and mourning.
“Let us prove that it is not the ‘will of Congress’ but the WILL OF THE PEOPLE that ultimately prevails,” NUJP said.
“Let our demand remain: #IbalikAngABSCBN,” it further said.
ABS-CBN’s broadcast operations were ordered shut on May 5 following the expiration of its franchise, in compliance with the National Telecommunications Commission’s shutdown order.
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