Businessmen are risking the ire of President Rodrigo Duterte by openly lobbying for Congress to address the issues raised against the the renewal of ABS-CBN Broadcasting’s franchise.
In a joint statement, the Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD), the Institute for Solidarity in Asia (ISA), the Makati Business Club (MBC), and the Management Association of the Philippines (MAP) said: “We the undersigned business organizations express our strong support for a balanced, fair, and timely consideration of the bills filed by several lawmakers on the renewal of ABS-CBN Corporation’s broadcasting franchise.”
“We fervently urge Congress to judiciously address any issues raised against the company while taking serious account of the bedrock issues of media freedom and free enterprise, which allow businesses to flourish for the overall welfare of our economy and our people,” the groups added.
Duterte has personally made it his agenda to stop Congress from holding a hearing to tackle the renewal of ABS-CBN’s franchise which ends on March 2020.
The statement could lead to payback from Duterte who has been critical of the ‘oligarch’ members of the MBC.
Duterte has not forgotten the adverse opinion of then MBC chair Ramon del Rosario Jr. who cautioned voters against supporting Duterte in the 2016 presidential campaign.
BUSINESS GROUPS STATEMENT ON ABS-CBN FRANCHISE
We the undersigned business organizations express our strong support for a balanced, fair and timely consideration of the bills filed by several lawmakers on the renewal of ABS-CBN Corporation’s broadcasting franchise. pic.twitter.com/1EnIlhsLrX
— Makati Business Club (@MBCforum) February 18, 2020