ABS-CBN believes that the absence of Kapamilya shows especially during the COVID-19 pandemic could affect the mental health of the Filipino people.
In a petition filed by ABS-CBN before the Supreme Court, they said that Filipinos who got used to watching Kapamilya top shows like “Ang Probinsiyano” are affected already by the absence of the said television shows.
According to them, entertainment being brought by ABS-CBN could help the people to survive the ECQ as most of them are forced to stay at home.
ABS-CBN is asking the court to block the cease and desist order issued by the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) against them.
“While the cease and desist order is in effect, millions of avid Filipino fans, who watch ABS-CBN entertainment shows and programs daily, are deprived of this source of leisure and enjoyment,” ABS-CBN petition reads.
“Under the extended quarantine conditions, Filipinos are literally in prisn within their homes and are unable to go out. Such difficult constraints will surely add emotional and mental stress that is detrimental to their well-being,” it added.
They also claimed that the “unparalleled reach” of ABS-CBN is needed during the pandemic as they could give timely information to the public.
ABS-CBN pointed out that some places in the country only rely on the information being brought by the Kapamilya network and other radio stations they owned.
“With ABS-CBN’s unparalleled reach, it is imperative that ABS-CBN is on air to give timely and reliable information to the public, especially in light of the current public health emergency,” they said.
“In some areas, ABS-CBN operates one of the very few (if not the only) available television and radio stations. For instance, ABS-CBN’s Channel 34 DTTB Station is one of only two TV/DTTB Stations in Nueva Vizcaya, while its D-11-Zz Channel 2 (in) and Channel 11 (out) TV Station is one of only three TV stations in Mountain Province,” it added.
The network also mentioned to the petition that the continuous closure of ABS-CBN could affect its workers.
“If this severe financial hemorrhage is not stopped, ABS-CBN may be constrained to eventually let go of workers, reduce salaries and benefits, and substantially cut down on costs and expenses,” the network said.
ABS-CBN claimed that they’re losing P30 to P35 million per day in advertising revenues since NTC ordered them to stop their operations.