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ABS-CBN may challenge, appeal order to cease ops, says NTC exec

Broadcast network ABS-CBN still has legal remedies to challenge or appeal the National Telecommunications Commission's order for it to stop operations after its legislative franchise expired on May 4. 

“They can file necessary petitions, whatever it is so that they can continue operating, depende sa paga-analyze ng kanilang mga lawyer,” NTC Deputy Commissioner Edgardo Cabarios said in an interview on Dobol B sa News TV.

In an order dated May 5, 2020, the NTC directed ABS-CBN to stop operating in various television and radio broadcasting stations nationwide, absent a valid congressional franchise which lapsed on May 4, 2020. 

“‘Yung appeal, motion for reconsideration i-file [nila] dito sa commission. ‘Yun ang pag-aaralan ng Commission,” he said.

In a separate interview on 24 Oras, Cabarios said that ABS-CBN can continue operating if they can secure a temporary restraining order.

“They can continue [if they have a TRO]... Kung wala, they have to comply,” he said.

ABS-CBN said it will comply with the NTC’s directive and go off air on Tuesday night.

Cabarios also said that if ABS-CBN files a motion for reconsideration, the NTC shall stay the execution of its order.

Upon the expiration of RA 7966, ABS-CBN no longer has a valid and subsisting congressional franchise as required by Act No. 3846, the NTC said.

The NTC, which earlier said it would grant a provisional authority (PA) to allow ABS-CBN to continue operations, has given the company 10 days from receipt of the order to respond.

The latest development came days after the Office of the Solicitor General warned NTC commissioners that they could face Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act charges should they issue ABS-CBN Corp. and its affiliate ABS Convergence Inc. a provisional authority (PA) to operate after its franchise lapses on May 4, 2020. -NB/BM, GMA News