A lawmaker who previously pushed for the franchise renewal of ABS-CBN decided to withdraw his support to Kapamilya Network on Monday.
Kabayan party-list Rep. Ron Salo during the congressional hearing on ABS-CBN franchise withdrew his authorship of ABS-CBN franchise bill citing a news report from a Kapamilya journalist.
According to Salo, ABS-CBN journalist, Christian Esguerra accused him of “imposing strict regulations to ABS-CBN” in exchange for franchise renewal.
“ABS-CBN’s Christian V. Esguerra reported that the proposed parameters “was the government’s way to control the shattered news network that repeatedly criticized President Rodrigo Duterte.” said Salo.
“Journalism professor Christian Esguerra passed it on as a news article and yet, the first sentence is already based on his biased personal opinion. Okay lang po sana kung ang sinulat ni Ginoong Esguerra ay isang opinyon o editorial at hindi news article,” he added.
Salo then continued on criticizing Esguerra for having difficulty avoiding writing opinionated news reports.
“Mr. Esguerra’s inability to be impartial is perhaps the primary reason for his fierce objection to my proposed measure. He had difficulty separating facts from opinion. For indeed, news has to be about facts. And if one has to report an opinion, then there must be proper attribution. But it’s a cardinal sin for journalists to pass his opinions as facts,” he said.
The lawmaker also cited that ABS-CBN failed to defend themselves from the accusations of the critics of the Kapamilya Network.
“Sa pagtatasa namin, ang mga nailatag na ebidensiya ay mas pumapabor sa mga hindi pumapayag na mabigyang muli ng bagong prangkisa ang ABS-CBN. My partylist deems that ABS-CBN failed to successfully rebut the long list of alleged violations and thus, this representation cannot anymore support the grant of a new franchise to ABS-CBN,” he stated.
“Dahil dito, hindi na kayang suportahan ng Kabayan Party-List ang pagbibigay ng bagong prangkisa sa ABS-CBN. I am respectfully manifesting to this honorable committee my withdrawal of my authorship of House Bill No. 6901,” he added.
Salo insisted that most of his proposal was already present in the expired franchise of ABS-CBN.