Discussions on case vs ABS-CBN deferred to March 10 – SC
Robie de Guzman • February 26, 2020 • 422
MANILA, Philippines – The Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday announced it has postponed the discussions on the petition against media network ABS-CBN Corporation seeking to scrap its broadcast franchise due to alleged violations.
SC spokesperson Atty. Brian Keith Hosaka said the high court, which sat en banc on Wednesday, did not make any decision on the quo warranto and gag order petitions filed by Solicitor General Jose Calida against the media network.
Hosaka said the deferment aims to give the Justices time to study the pleadings and comments submitted by the concerned parties.
“The case will be taken up again by the en banc on March 10, 2020. This is to give the Justices time to go over the pleadings submitted by the parties, including the comments recently filed by the respondents,” he said in a statement.
Calida on February 10 asked the Supreme Court to forfeit of the legislative franchise of ABS-CBN, claiming the network committed highly abusive practices and violations including foreign ownership and lack of operating permits.
The government’s top lawyer also urged the high court to issue a gag order to stop ABS-CBN and other parties concerned from discussing the petition.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo earlier said the President Rodrigo Duterte has nothing to do with ABS-CBN’s franchise woes despite his previous threats of shutting down the network.
“The quo warranto has nothing to do with the personal feeling of displeasure, hurt and offense of the President. The SolGen has constitutional duty to do what he has done,” Panelo said.
“The franchise renewal of ABS-CBN has been there, filed in 2014 prior to the assumption of this President, so there is no way by which anybody can be blaming this President for the inaction of Congress whether the previous Congress or the present Congress,” he added.
The House of Representatives has yet to begin deliberations on the bills seeking to renew ABS-CBN’s 25-year franchise which is set to expire in May. Congress goes on a break on March 11.
The Senate on Monday conducted a hearing on the franchise woes of ABS-CBN where the network’s top executives attended.
During the hearing, the company’s president and CEO, Carlo Katigbak expressed apology for failing to air then-presidential candidate Mayor Duterte’s campaign ad in 2016.
Panelo said he has yet to get the president’s response on the network’s apology. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Dante Amento)
MANILA, Philippines – The Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) has announced the opening of applications or recommendations for positions at the Supreme Court (SC) and the Court of Appeals (CA).
In an announcement posted on SC Public Information Office’s Twitter account, the JBC said applicants who will be selected in the process will occupy the position to be vacated by SC Associate Justice Jose Reyes Jr., who will retire on September 18, and former CA Presiding Justice Romeo Barza, who retired on August 2, 2019.
In its advisory, the JBC said interested applications must visit its official website, and access the online application scheduler.
After filling out the computer-generated letter of intent, they must submit it along with the documentary requirements to this JBC e-mail on the selected date and time of appointment in the online application scheduler.
The JBC emphasized that the digitized versions of the letter of intent they will submit must be “complete” and “accurate.”
“The documentary requirements should be in Portable Document Format (PDF) and e-mailed in a single file only, following the order of documents as enumerated in the Announcement posted on the JBC website,” it said.
“The date of actual receipt of the complete documentary requirements (sent through e-mail) shall be deemed as the date of filing,” it added.
The JBC further said that applicants are also required to submit two complete sets of the documentary requirements through courier service not later than 4:30 p.m. of July 7, 2020 to its office along Padre Faura Street in Manila.
It warned that applicants who will fail to comply with the requirements of online and physical submission of the documentary requirements will not be considered for nomination.
The JBC likewise announced it has set on May 28 at 10 a.m. an online public interview of candidates for the SC Associate Justice position vacated by former Associate Justice Andres Reyes Jr., who compulsorily retired on May 11, 2020.
The candidates are as follows:
Ramon Bato Jr.
The JBC said that the following are also candidates for the said judicial position, but whose previous interviews are still valid:
Jose Midas Marquez
Eduardo Peralta Jr.
The JBC is a constitutional office that accepts, screens, and nominates appointments to the judiciary.
It will then submit a list of nominees to President Rodrigo Duterte for selection, and whoever is appointed will complete the membership in the SC composed of 15 justices.
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte reminds the public to heed government protocols for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) crisis even after community quarantine has been relaxed.
On May 16, Metro Manila shifted to modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) from enhanced community quarantine to help revive the Philippines’ crippled economy.
But President Duterte stressed that such relaxation in restrictions doesn’t mean the country is free of COVID-19 and warned that the government might again tighten restrictions if situations get worse.
“Remember this, the loosening of the restrictions does not mean [we’re COVID-free],” he said.
“If the contamination will be as fast as before, and it will continue to infect yung nakalabas na (people who are allowed to go out), then we’ll have to just go back to original program,” he added.
Meanwhile, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque denied allegations that the government is not ready or has no policy for the conduct of COVID-19 mass testing.
Roque stressed that the government in fact is now preparing to hit the target of 30,000 a day testing capacity by the end of May.
“From the very beginning, we have had a systematic targeted testing at sa tingin po natin ang sinusunod natin ay benchmark recognized internationally specifically by the WHO,” the Palace Spokesperson said in defense against against critics who are questioning the government’s advice of letting private companies shoulder COVID-19 testing for their respective workers who are returning to work.
Roque added that the government is targeting to test around 1.5% to 2% of the more than 100 million Filipinos for COVID-19 infection and clarified on what is referred to as ‘mass testing.’
“Ang tawag po dapat ay expanded targeted testing,” he said.
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