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Feb 11 20, 2:46 pm

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Lawmakers: ABS-CBN can still operate even if franchise expires

by | News

Feb. 11, 20 | 2:46 pm

Some lawmakers believe that embattled television giant ABS-CBN Corporation can still operate even if its broadcast franchise will expire by the end of March.

Isabela Representative Antonio Albano said that the expiration of the network’s franchise does not mean that the network will cease to operate or tantamount to shut down.

Albano is the current Vice Chairperson of the House panel on legislative franchises said Tuesday.

READ ALSO: Rep. Aragones urges Duterte to reconsider his position on ABS-CBN franchise renewal

“May I remind the public that even if the ABS-CBN franchise expires on the said date on March, it does not mean that ABS-CBN will close completely because the rule of thumb in the committee, we were briefed on this while this 18th Congress is ongoing, hindi po titigil ang services ng ABS-CBN hanggang matapos ang 18th Congress,” Albano told reporters.

The bill renewing the franchise of the network has yet to be heard and Solicitor General Jose Calida has filed a quo warrant to petition seeking to revoke the network’s franchise for violating the constitution.

President Rodrigo Duterte has repeatedly said he would block the network’s franchise renewal.

READ ALSO: Lawmakers, including Duterte allies, back ABS-CBN’s franchise renewal

Senate President Vicente Sotto III also believes that a shutdown may not happen immediately.

“Basta as long as may naka-file na bill, it is deemed extended until matapos ‘yung 18th Congress at hindi pa rin hini-hear,” Sotto said.

“It has happened so many times with other franchises. That is the operation of law… If it is not approved until March 2022, that is the only time it is terminated,” Sotto said.

At least 11 bills are now in the House of Representatives seeking to renew the network’s franchise.

“Ang masama kung napaso na ‘yong franchise at magfa-file pa lang,” he added.

READ ALSO: ABS-CBN on franchise revocation case: We did not violate the law

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It has a print run of 60,000 copies and 250,000 readership per week; bolstered by 2.5 million visitors to its website every month. It also has an e-newsletter sent to its 250,000 subscribers every day.

The Filipino Times is FREE and has the widest targeted circulation across the 7 emirates of the UAE.

With more than 2,500 strategic distribution spots, TFT is available where the Filipinos are - at Smart Bus Shelters, Metro Stations, restaurants, supermarkets, schools, airport lounges, Emirates and Etihad Philippine-bound flights, churches, Filipino community events and many more.

THE FILIPINO TIMES. We are where the Filipinos are.

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