No wrong done: ABS-CBN says Calida’s bid to revoke franchise baseless
Solicitor General Jose Calida’s quo warranto petition against media giant ABS-CBN has no merit, the network said on Monday (Feb. 10).
“These allegations cited by the Office of the Solicitor General in his press statement are without merit,” ABS-CBN said in a statement after Calida filed the petition before the SC.
“ABS-CBN complies with all pertinent laws governing its franchise and has secured all necessary government and regulatory approvals for its business operations,” the network stressed.
Reiterating that it did not violate the law, the network described the petition as “an attempt to deprive Filipinos of the services of ABS-CBN.”
“The Senate, the House of Representatives, and the Executive Branch have assured the public that our franchise will be allowed to go through the proper renewal process in a fair manner. To that end, the filing of the quo warranto case is ill-timed given that Congress has already resumed its session,” it stated.
“We remain committed to our mission to serve the Filipino people especially at this time when millions of Filipinos rely on our services in delivering information such as the 2019 nCoV ARD, the developments in the Middle East, and updates on Taal Volcano situation as they relate to our countrymen,” the network assured.
Among the the points raised by Calida, the network said all of its broadcast offerings including KBO “received the necessary government and regulatory approvals and are not prohibited by our franchise.”
ABS-CBN also refuted the claims of Calida that network sold Philippine Deposit Receipts (PDR) to foreign investors in violation of its franchise and the country’s laws.
“ABS-CBN Holdings’ Philippine Deposit Receipts or PDRs were evaluated and approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Philippine Stock Exchange prior to its public offering. These are the same instruments used by other broadcast companies to raise capital for the improvement of services,” the network said.
Calida also claimed that the network’s subsidiary, ABS-CBN Convergence, failed to publicly offer any of its outstanding capital stock to any securities exchange within the Philippines within five years from the start of its operations, which is an indispensable condition in its franchise.
“The ownership of ABS-CBN in ABS-CBN Convergence was undertaken under the same law and structures that have been utilized by other telecommunications companies. These are transfers that are approved under the Public Telecommunications Policy Act and are fully compliant with law,” the network also pointed out.