President Rodrigo Duterte opened his six-year presidency with a threat – that journalists are not exempted from assassination “if you’re a son of bitch” – about a month before he was inaugurated into power. This cemented his hostility towards the media. And it did not end here.
Tags: abscbn franchise renewal
A year since lawmakers killed the franchise of the biggest television network in the country, a group of Filipino journalists said the Duterte administration cannot wash its hands over what is deemed as an assault on free press and abuse of power.
“Perhaps it is not too late for the members of the House of Representatives to salvage their reputations, to prove that they are what the Constitution charges them to be, members of a co-equal and independent branch of government, and no longer the willing accomplices to the continuing siege on press freedom and all our other rights and liberties.”
The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines assailed the NTC order, adding that it would “do no good to the Filipino people if the country’s biggest media corporation, one that is relied upon by a great number of the people during this pandemic for news, entertainment and relief delivery, if it ceases operations tomorrow.”
The new decade poses possible threat to ABS-CBN as the broadcast corporation’s franchise expiration approaches in less than two months, and with President Duterte’s ongoing tirades against the network’s franchise renewal.