SC orders ABS-CBN to comment on quo warranto petition in 10 days

by Jet Hitosis
Feb 11, 2020
Supreme Court orders ABS-CBN Corporation to submit their comment "within a non-extendible period of 10 days from receipt of notice" on the quo warranto petition filed by Office of the Solicitor General, asking to revoke the network's franchise.
PHOTO/S: @SCPh_PIO on Twitter, ABS-CBN

Pinagkokomento ng Supreme Court (SC) ang pamunuan ng ABS-CBN Corporation sa quo warranto petition na inihain ng Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) nitong Lunes, February 10, upang bawian ng prangkisa ang network.

Hiling sa petisyon na mapawalang-bisa ang prangkisa ng broadcasting giant at ng telecommunications unit nito, ang ABS-CBN Convergence, Inc.

Iginiit sa quo warranto petition na nilabag umano ng network ang ilang probisyon sa legislative franchise (Republic Act No. 7966) nito sa pag-aalok ng paid broadcast nang walang permiso ng gobyerno, at pagpapahintulot ng foreign ownership sa kumpanya.

Pinangunahan ni Solicitor General Jose Calida ang paghahain ng petisyon sa SC nitong Lunes, mahigit isang buwan bago mag-expire ang broadcasting franchise ng network sa March 30.

SUBMIT COMMENT IN 10 DAYS

Sa SC order ngayong Martes ng umaga, February 11, binigyan ng Kataas-taasang Hukuman ng sampung araw ang ABS-CBN para magsumite ng komento nito sa kinahaharap na quo warranto petition.

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Inilabas ng Korte Suprema ang kautusan pagkatapos ng En Banc session ng mga mahistrado ngayong umaga.

Quoted ng media reports si Atty. Brian Keith Hosaka, hepe ng Public Information Office at tagapagsalita ng SC, sa pagsasabing sasaklawin ng komento maging ang hiling ni SolGen Calida na agarang pagpapatigil sa operasyon ng KBO Channel.

Ang KBO Channel, o Kapamilya Box Office Channel, ay napapanood sa digital TV service ng network na ABS-CBN TV Plus.

Ang ABS-CBN Convergence—na kasamang babawian ng prangkisa sa pamamagitan ng quo warranto—ang nangangasiwa sa ABS-CBN TV Plus.

Sa 2022 naman mag-e-expire ang prangkisa ng ABS-CBN Convergence, alinsunod sa RA 8332.

NO TRO AGAINST KBO CHANNEL FOR NOW

Quote ng media reports kay Hosaka: “Acting on the Quo Warranto Petition filed by Solicitor General Calida on behalf of the Republic against respondents ABS CBN Corp. and ABS CBN Convergence Inc., the Supreme Court in today’s En Banc session required the respondents to file their comment to the said petition for Quo Warranto within a non-extendible period of 10 days from receipt of notice.”

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Dagdag ni Hosaka: “The comment likewise pertains to the prayer of the Solicitor General for the issuance of a TRO (temporary restraining order) or writ of preliminary injunction to enjoin ABS-CBN Corporation from further operating the KBO Channel and offering it to the public.”

Ang 10-araw na palugit ng SC sa pagsusumite ng ABS-CBN ng komento ay nadoble sa limang araw na hinihiling ni SolGen Calida para sagutin ng network ang petisyon.

Bukod dito, humiling din ang OSG chief na itakda sa March 3 ang oral arguments sa petisyon.

Gayunman, sinabi ni Hosaka na walang order ang SC para magsagawa ng oral arguments.

Hindi naman malinaw kung tatalakayin ng Korte Suprema sa mga susunod nitong deliberasyon ang tungkol sa oral arguments na hinihiling ni SolGen Calida.

ABS-CBN REFUTES OSG ALLEGATIONS

Ilang oras makaraang personal na ihain ni SolGen Calida sa SC ang quo warranto petition kontra sa ABS-CBN, naglabas ng pahayag ang network upang itanggi ang mga alegasyon ng OSG.

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Nanindigan ang broadcasting giant na wala itong nilabag na batas at walang basehan ang mga akusasyon ng OSG.

Ayon pa sa ABS-CBN, ang quo warranto petition ng OSG upang kanselahin ang kanilang prangkisa “appears to be an effort to shut down ABS-CBN to the serious prejudice of millions of Filipinos who rely on the network for news, entertainment and public service.”

QUO WARRANTO PETITION

Ang quo warranto ang ginagamit ng gobyerno upang kuwestiyunin ang “usurpation of a public office, position or franchise,” batay sa Rule 66 ng Rules of Court.

Maaari itong ihain laban sa “person who usurps, intrudes into, or unlawfully holds or exercises a public office, position or franchise; a public officer who does or suffers an act which, by the provision of law, constitutes a ground for the forfeiture of his office; or an association which acts as a corporation within the Philippines without being legally incorporated or without lawful authority so to act.”

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PENDING FRANCHISE RENEWAL BILLS

Kasunod ng quo warranto filing, nanawagan si Buhay Party-list Representative Lito Atienza sa mga kapwa kongresista, partikular sa House Committee on Legislative Franchises, na aksiyunan na ang 11 pending ABS-CBN franchise renewal bills.

Inamin naman ni House Deputy Speaker Johnny Pimentel na maaaring ma-derail ng OSG petition ang pagtalakay sa naturang bilang ng mga nakabimbing panukala.

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Supreme Court orders ABS-CBN Corporation to submit their comment "within a non-extendible period of 10 days from receipt of notice" on the quo warranto petition filed by Office of the Solicitor General, asking to revoke the network's franchise.
PHOTO/S: @SCPh_PIO on Twitter, ABS-CBN
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