Press Release
May 14, 2020

Statement of Sen. Francis "Kiko" Pangilinan on possible constitutional violation in House's second reading of bill on short-term ABS-CBN franchise:

"We witnessed last night how our co-equal chamber has fast-tracked the approval of the provisional franchise bill of ABS-CBN.

In a few hours after its filing, the Committee of the Whole approved HB 6732 on first and second reading, and is expected to vote on it on third reading early next week.

It was a display of how measures in the chamber can easily hurdle, if the leadership wills it.

We want ABS-CBN to be back on air as we know its operation is crucial in ensuring the free flow of life-saving information and in keeping the jobs of thousands of people.

However, we want our courses of action to be right - from the bill's landing at the House plenary to its transmittal to the Senate for our own deliberation - so that we will have a provisional franchise that is legally and constitutionally firm and unassailable.

According to the Constitution, Article VI Section 26. (2) No bill passed by either House shall become a law unless it has passed three readings on separate days, and printed copies thereof in its final form have been distributed to its Members three days before its passage, except when the President certifies to the necessity of its immediate enactment to meet a public calamity or emergency.

It is within the power of the House to set this right, and soon.

Also, the nod of the House and the Senate will also not automatically allow the network to operate as the bill has to pass through the final approval of the President.

While we look forward to the provisional franchise, we hope to tackle in the near future measures granting the network a renewed 25-year franchise to finally resurrect its operations.

News Latest News Feed