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ABS-CBN President/CEO Carlo Katigbak apologizes to President Duterte for unaired ads in 2016 elections

by Arniel C. Serato
Feb 24, 2020
ABS-CBN Corporation President and Chief Executive Officer Carlo Lopez Katigbak (left) reiterates that "ABS-CBN does not and will not have its own political agenda," in connection with President Rodrigo Duterte's (right) tirades and grievances against the broadcast giant.
PHOTO/S: Carlo Katigbak / Presidential Communications on Facebook

Humingi ng dispensa si ABS-CBN Corporation President at Chief Executive Officer Carlo Lopez Katigbak kay Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte kaugnay ng hindi pag-ere ng political ads nito noong 2016 presidential elections.

Sa isinasagawang Senate hearing tungkol sa ABS-CBN franchise ngayong araw, February 24, ipinakita ni Senator Bong Go ang isang politigal propaganda laban kay noo'y Davao City mayor at presidential candidate na si Duterte.

Ang nasabing ad ay binayaran ng masugid na kritiko ni Duterte na si dating Senator Antonio Trillanes IV.

Si Senator Go ay masugid namang kaalyado at tagapagtanggol ni Pangulong Duterte.

Kasunod nito, humingi ng paumanhin si Katigbak sa Pangulo kung na-offend ito.

Ngunit diin ng presidente ng ABS-CBN, wala silang sariling political agenda.

Pahayag ni Katigbak: “We’re sorry if we offended the President. That was not the intention of the network.

“We felt that we were just abiding by the laws and regulations that surround the airing of the political advertisements.

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“Today, we want to make a categorical statement, together with our chairman Mark Lopez, that ABS-CBN does not and will not have its own political agenda.”

Kasunod nito, inamin ni Katigbak na may hindi sila naereng political ads ni Duterte kahit bayad na ito.

Paliwanag niya, may dalawang uri ng political ads airtime: ang national ads na mapapanood sa buong bansa, at ang local ads, na mapapanood lang sa mga probinsiya.

Nasa P117-M daw ang halaga ng kabuuang national advertisements ni Duterte, at lahat ng mga ito ay naere.

Patuloy ni Katigbak, “Dun sa local ads nagkaproblema kami because we only have two minutes of airtime per hour.

"In the case of local ads, the President placed an order of P65 million worth of spots, of which we failed to air P7 million worth.”

FIRST COME, FIRST SERVED BASIS

Ayon pa kay Katigbak, first come, first served basis ang pag-place ng ads.

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Nang nag-place ang dating alkalde ay puno na raw ang slots na ito.

Paliwanag ni Katigbak: “Many of these spots were ordered [by Duterte] on May 3rd, and May 7 was the last day of the campaign period.

"So there had been many previous telecasts that came in ahead of the President’s ads.

“Of the P7 million na hindi namin naere, we were able to refund approximately P4 million to the President, and it was accepted.”

Inamin naman ni Katigbak na nagkaroon ng delay sa pag-refund ng P2.6-M, at hindi na raw ito tinanggap ng Pangulo.

Aniya, “On this issue, we acknowledged our shortcoming and our failure to release the fund in a timely manner.”

POLITICAL PROPAGANDA

Tungkol naman sa political propaganda ni former Senator Trillanes laban kay President Duterte, sinabi ni Katigbak na wala itong nilabag na batas kaya nila ito inere.

“Sa ad ni Senator Trillanes, under the Fair Elections Act, lawful election propaganda shall include for or against the candidacy.

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“That to us was the first reason why our internal committee gave a green light to the ad.

“The second reason, they felt that unlike the first version, which we rejected because we felt the children were performing inappropriate actions or behavior, there was a revised version of the ad that showed the children merely asking questions.

“It did not violate any of our internal policies.”

Sa isang talumpati noon ni Pangulong Duterte, hayagan niyang binatikos ang ABS-CBN, partikular na ang may-ari nitong si Gabby Lopez.

Banat ng Pangulo: "Alam mo yung ginawa ng mga put*ngina kayo, ikaw Gabby.

“Inuna mo pa yung advertisement ni [Antonio] Trillanes na hindi ikaw.

“Pinaniraan ako ng mga bata, 'Ay, si Duterte killer 'yan.'

"Sa batas, there was an injunction na hindi puwede 'yan kasi bawal na gamitin mo ang bata.

“And yet, pumunta talaga kayo, went ahead with the show and made it public."

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Sa isang talumpati naman niya sa Aklan noong November 2018, sinabi ng Pangulo, “Yung franchise ninyo, matatapos. But let me ask you questions first.

“Kasi ako talaga mag-object na ma-renew kayo. Alam mo bakit?

“Magnanakaw kayo. Estapador. Ginawa ninyo sa amin, marami kami.”

Dahil sa hayagang pagbatikos ng Pangulo sa ABS-CBN, inupuan lamang noong 16th Congress ang franchise renewal bill na inihain ni Congresswoman Micaela Violago ng Nueva Ecija, hanggang hindi napaplantsa ang gusot ng istasyon sa Pangulo.

Hindi rin nakausad ang franchise renewal bills ng network noong 17th Congress.

THE ABS-CBN FRANCHISE EXPIRATION

Sa May 4, 2020 pa talaga mapapaso ang legislative franchise ng ABS-CBN, taliwas sa naunang napaulat na sa March 30, 2020 na ito magtatapos.

Ito ang bagong pahayag ni Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra sa kasalukuyang ginaganap na Senate hearing tungkol sa ABS-CBN franchise renewal.

Napirmahan ang Republic Act No. 7966, ang batas na nagbigay ng 25-year legislative franchise to broadcast ng Kapamilya network, noong March 25, 1995.

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Pero paliwanag ni Justice Secretary Guevarra, nagiging epektibo lamang ang nasabing batas matapos ang 15 araw mula nang ito ay mailathala sa diyaryo.

Nailathala sa diyaryo ang nasabing batas noong April 19, 1995.

Saad ni Secretary Guevarra, “For that reason, the franchise will expire on May 4, 2020.

Nakasaad sa Section 15 ng RA 7966: "This Act shall take effect fifteen (15) days from the date of its publication in at least two (2) newspapers of general circulation in the Philippines."

Kaya sa Mayo raw totoong mapapaso ang prangkisa ng ABS-CBN.

Kasalukuyang nakabinbin pa rin ang franchise renewal bills ng ABS-CBN sa Kongreso, at hindi pa sila naikakalendaryo ng House Committee on Legislative Franchises.

May 11 panukalang batas ang nakahain sa naturang kumite, pero wala pang linaw kung kailan sila matatalakay.

Sa mga naunang pahayag, sinabi ni Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano na tatalakayin din ito ng Kongreso. Pero baka raw hindi sa mga susunod na sesyon dahil magsa-summer break ang Kongreso sa darating na March 14.

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Sa Mayo naman magbabalik ang sesyon, ngunit marami raw priority bills ang nararapat unahin nilang talakayin.

May kinahaharap ding quo warranto petition sa Supreme Court ang ABS-CBN dahil sa isinampang petisyon ng Office of the Solicitor General, ang abogado ng pamahalaang Duterte.

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ABS-CBN Corporation President and Chief Executive Officer Carlo Lopez Katigbak (left) reiterates that "ABS-CBN does not and will not have its own political agenda," in connection with President Rodrigo Duterte's (right) tirades and grievances against the broadcast giant.
PHOTO/S: Carlo Katigbak / Presidential Communications on Facebook
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