Recent Posts

Breaking News

Radio Veritas, Catholic schools rally behind ABS-CBN

By Christina Hermoso

Church-run Radio Veritas and several Catholic institutions have rallied behind ABS-CBN after the network was forced to shut down Tuesday due to an expired franchise.

The St La Salle Building of the De La Salle University is lit up in red, green, and blue on Tuesday night “in solidarity” with ABS-CBN. (COURTESY OF BR. EDGAR ESPARAGOZA, FSC/ VIA CBCP NEWS/ MANILA BULLETIN)

The St La Salle Building of the De La Salle University is lit up in red, green, and blue on Tuesday night “in solidarity” with ABS-CBN. (COURTESY OF BR. EDGAR ESPARAGOZA, FSC/ VIA CBCP NEWS/ MANILA BULLETIN)

Radio Veritas president and Caritas Manila executive director Rev. .Fr. Anton Pascual cited the importance of press freedom as a “a crucial safeguard of truth against lies as we have historically protected the freedom of the press since the 1986 EDSA People Power Revolution.”

“We pray that our lawmakers would expeditiously resolve the renewal of the franchise of ABS-CBN,” Pascual said over the faith-based station, which played a pivotal role during the Martial Law.

The Church leader said that at this time of crisis, the nation must be united and not divided “by this unnecessary situation.”

The National Telecommunication Commission (NTC) issued a cease and desist order on Tuesday against ABS-CBN following the expiration of its 25-year congressional franchise on May 4. The order is contrary to the recommendation of Congress to issue a temporary permit for the network while they tackle the franchise renewal.

Meanwhile, the country’s top Catholic schools have, likewise, expressed support to the country’s largest network.

In a Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines News post, the Jesuit-run Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU) said, the network’s forced shutdown shows “shades of Martial Law” under the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos, “when the airwaves went silent as the dictatorship sought to quell the free exchange of news, information and commentary.”

ADMU president Rev. Fr. Jose Ramon Villarin said, “ABS-CBN’s closure extinguishes the brightest light in our information firmament and leaves the smaller ones in darkness and peril. We urge our lawmakers to act post-haste to approve the ABS-CBN franchise and restore its broadcast,” he said.

The University of Santo Tomas, for its part said, the forced shutdown of ABS-CBN “is a clear disservice to Filipinos in this time of COVID-19 pandemic when information, delivered fast and wide is key to saving lives. We pray that ABS-CBN will be able to resume its broadcast operations very soon to continue its invaluable service to the Filipino people and the nation,” the UST said.

As a show of support to the network, De La Salle University on Taft Avenue, Manila, on Tuesday, lit up the facade of its main LS building in red, green, and blue, the colors of ABS-CBN.

In a statement, the university expressed solidarity with the network’s more than 11,000 employees and appealed to the NTC to grant provisional authority for the continued operation of the station.

San Carlos Bishop Gerardo Alminaza, earlier, expressed support to the network particularly to the thousands who were affected by its forced closure.

“I join my voice in protest of the cease and desist order of the NTC against ABS-CBN on behalf of our journalists and the thousands of workers affected by such decision,” the prelate said.


Source: Manila Bulletin (https://news.mb.com.ph/2020/05/07/radio-veritas-catholic-schools-rally-behind-abs-cbn/)

No comments