Sports personalities in disbelief with Congress’ denial of ABS-CBN franchise

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A pedestrian walks pass the ABS CBN headquarters in Quezon City on Wednesday, May 6, 2020, a day after the NTC order it to stop operation due to non-renewal of license by congress.-INQUIRER/GRIG C. MONTEGRANDE

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MANILA, Philippines—The House of Representatives’ lopsided and controversial decision to deny the ABS-CBN of a franchise not only put the network’s news and entertainment shows in limbo but also the airing of several sports leagues in the Philippines.

After weeks of deliberations, the House Committee on Legislative Franchises voted 70-11 that junked the consolidated bill that would’ve given ABS-CBN a 25-year franchise to resume broadcast operations.

This congressional move, which was a controversial one, had damaging effects on Philippine sports as the UAAP and NCAA have broadcast partnerships with the network with their games getting aired at ABS-CBN Sports and Action.

Manny Pacquiao’s, who is a senator, Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League, the Premier Volleyball League, and ONE Championship—Asia’s biggest mixed martial arts promotion—also have their shows broadcast with ABS-CBN.

This measure left several Philippine sports personalities utterly disgusted with some calling it an injustice.

Magnolia assistant coach Jason Webb, a former PBA commentator, lamented the decision and questioned how the Congress got full of corrupted personalities.

“Makes you think what we did wrong to deserve the leaders we have right now? We are ruled by men driven by corruption and pure evil,” posted Webb on Twitter. “God bless the Philippines.”

ABS-CBN sports broadcaster Gretchen Ho, a former volleyball star with Ateneo, said that Congress’ denial of a franchise should be the inspiring call for the current generation to continue the fight.

“To all the kids, take note. May this day inspire in all of us a stronger call to serve and fight injustice,” said Ho.

Alyssa Valdez, the PVL’s biggest draw, simply said “unbelievable” with Congress’ decision.

Charo Soriano said the lawmakers’ decision to deny the franchise was “disheartening” but it was in their action that revealed their identities.

“This is a day to be remembered. The day that our lawmakers have been weighed, have been measured, and have been found wanting. How truly disheartening,” wrote Soriano.

Bar topnotcher Mickey Ingles, who played football for Ateneo, said that Congress’ decision was to be expected but that they will be forever judged for their action.


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