ABS-CBN seeks Supreme Court injunction on NTC order
MANILA, Philippines — ABS-CBN Corp. ran to the Supreme Court on Thursday to ask it to set aside the National Telecommunications Commission’s cease and desist order against the network.
The broadcast company filed a Petition for Certiorari and Prohibition assailing the NTC’s order before the SC and accusing the telecommunications regulatory body of committing grave abuse of discretion when it issued the CDO.
NTC issued an immediately executory cease and desist order against the network on Tuesday, a day after ABS-CBN’s 25-year franchise expired.
The network complied with the order and shut the operations of its 42 television stations across the country, including flagship and free Channel 2 and its regional channels, 10 digital broadcast channels, and 18 FM radio and five AM radio stations.
The network asked the SC to issue a temporary restraining order to enjoin NTC from implementing the CDO and for a permanent injunction against the assailed order.
The media giant also asked the tribunal to nullify the CDO.
‘NTC treated ABS-CBN’s case differently’
The media company also said the CDO violated its right to equal protection of the laws, as it pointed out that the NTC allowed other entities to operate despite franchise expiry and when enjoined by the Congress.
“There is no reason why the same practice should not be applied to ABS-CBN,” their petition read.
NTC Deputy Commissioner Edgardo Cabarios told Philstar.com Wednesday that the commission was “left with no choice but to treat” ABS-CBN’s case differently.
“This is a difficult case and so many opinions were already raised on this. Our legal team studied this carefully and in the end, the decision was not to keep quiet. We have to follow the law,” he said.
ABS-CBN also raised that President Rodrigo Duterte, chief executive, has not revoked the Department of Justice’s legal guidance, which states that broadcast companies may be allowed to operate pending congressional action on bills for franchise renewal. Philstar.com (FREEMAN)