Ang Probinsyano star Coco Martin is among the artists and members of the entertainment industry who made an “urgent appeal” to the House of Representatives to tackle the franchise renewal of media giant ABS-CBN within seven weeks before the session adjourns.
In a letter written on January 27 addressed to Palawan First District Representative Franz Alvarez, chair for the Committee on Legislative Franchises, the artists said that “it is truly disheartening” that even after urging the company and the House to talk about franchise renewal in August 2019, the issue “has not been addressed, with some eight bills remaining pending, when the franchise is set to expire just eight weeks from now, on March 30.”
“Meanwhile, thousands of our fellow Filipinos are suffering from anxiety featuring an uncertain future,” they said. He also appealed to the House to consider the 11,000+ employees and the “18 million poor Filipinos” who rely on free TV and radio.
“They believe that the Committee knows that the House of Representatives, having the sole jurisdiction of granting or canceling a legislative franchise, is also in the best position to deliberate on whatever violations the franchisee may have committed and not any other branch of government, even if it is the Office of the President because Congress has to protect its integrity as a co-equal branch of government,” according to the letter.
”This matter is not about who owns the station, or who may be a better owner of this franchise. Let us not gamble people’s lives and future nor the right of people to information and communication at a time when our country is confronted with so many problems. We want to believe that the good congressman and his co-members are imbued with a deep sense of obligation towards their constituency, the Filipino people,” the letter added.
The letter was signed by different artists under the company, including Martin.