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Palace: ABS-CBN can donate refund to charity

Francis Wakefield

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Malacañang on Thursday said there is no need for ABS-CBN Channel 2 to seek any guidance from the government about the P2.6 million that the TV network intends to return.

“In the first place, there is no need for guidance, the President has already given them blanket authority – just donate ito to your favorite charitable organization,” Chief presidential Legal Counsel and Spokesperson Salvador Panelo told reporters during a press briefing in Malacañang.

Earlier, the network released a statement thanking the President for accepting their apology over the airing of a controversial political ad against him by opposition Senator Antonio Trillanes IV.
It added that it will be coordinating with the Office of the President on donating the refund to a charitable institution.

In an interview Wednesday night, President Duterte said leave ABS-CBN’s impending franchise renewal to Congress adding he has accepted the media network’s apology.

“I have kept a healthy distance from… It’s now in — that they are deliberating in Congress, the Lower House and the Senate. And there’s a plan that they would pass a joint resolution something,” Duterte said in an interview regarding ABS-CBN’s franchise renewal.

“But fundamentally, really, ang decision nasa House ngayon. Not so much of the Senate because the Constitution says all of these things must originate from the Lower House,” he added.

He also vowed not to interfere with the work of Congress on the issue.

The President said he can’t do much about the quo warranto petition filed by the Office of the Solicitor General before the Supreme Court.

“Ang problema kasi nitong sa SolGen (The problem with the SolGen) once he makes an official statement that there is a violation of law, then i-stopped na ako (I will stopped). Parang hindi na ako makagalaw (I cannot move),” he said.

“I cannot tell him to stop. The SolGen can only announce that there is a violation of law and that he is going to investigate it. Well, hindi ko masabihan (I cannot tell him), ‘Do not do it. Stop it,’” Duterte added.

p: wjg

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