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Solons to vote on ABS-CBN franchise

Keith A. Calayag

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The House Committee on Legislative announced on Saturday that it may vote on the application of ABS-CBN for a fresh 25-year franchise next week.

On 6 July, the panel holding hearings on the ABS-CBN franchise together with the House Committee on Good Government and Public Accountability will discuss the last issue against ABS-CBN.

The panel’s chairperson Franz Alvarez confirmed that lawmakers may possibly vote on Monday if the discussion on the last topic will be finished on the same day.

“It depends if we will finish the hearing by Monday,” he said in a text message to Daily Tribune.

Alvarez confirmed that the last topic to be discussed would be the allegation of bias against ABS-CBN’s reporting.

The joint panel so far conducted 11 hearings since May after the franchise of ABS-CBN had lapsed and the National Telecommunications Commission issued a cease and desist stopping its broadcast operations.

It has discussed by far allegations on whether or not ABS-CBN violated the Constitution which requires Filipino ownership of mass media, whether or not ABS-CBN application violate the 50-year constitutional limitation for a franchise and whether or not the acquisition of the by the Lopez family after the EDSA Revolution was pursuant to the constitution.

The joint panel also discussed allegations of violations of labor laws and tax avoidance against the network.

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