Understand How People Abuse their Powers

Filipino people should learn their lessons about their past. They should learn now to express their humanity to find hope and peace in these times of crises and worries. They should be considerate towards people. As well, they should uphold moral integrity and respect to other people. They should show some concerns about other people in the country with compassion, love, and mercy. However, all these attitudes and characters are lost. The Filipino people do not represent the standards of moral codes and values. They do not appreciate others and fail to think the best in people. All these things happen due to the abuse of power and the lost morals and values of the Filipino people.

For example, a group of administration lawmakers now pushed further reviews and House of Representative investigations against the ABS-CBN network. After the plans to shut down the TV network over the issue of not airing political campaigns and of promoting Antonio Trillanes’ political propaganda, the ABS-CBN network faced extinction. The rejection of the franchise renewal served as a form of revenge despite the reasons for violations.

The effort of the House of Representatives to investigate the so-called condonation of loans from the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) to the Lopez company and owner of ABS-CBN could be one form of abuse. The action of the House of Representatives materialized was based on House Resolution No. 1040. This resolution was filed on July 9 by Deputy Speaker and Davao Rep. Paolo Duterte, Deputy Speaker and Sagip Rep. Rodante Marcoleta, ACT-CIS Rep. Eric Yap, Cavite Rep. Jesus Crispin Remulla, Anakalusugan Rep. Michael Defensor, Cavite Rep. Elpidio Barzaga Jr., and Dumper PTDA Rep. Claudine Diana Bautista. These lawmakers were busy finding the loopholes for ABS-CBN to face more charges. This abuse of authority of some lawmakers became the face and the fight of the lawmakers in the Philippines.

The following actions of these lawmakers to escalate the situations and breakdown of ABS-CBN appeared to be an aggressive abuse of power.

    • Firstly, Sagip Rep. Rodante Marcoleta sought to look into the authenticity of the title of a 4.4-hectare property on Mother Ignacia Street in Quezon City where ABS-CBN’s head office and most of its broadcast facilities.
    • Secondly, Cavite Rep. Jesus Crispin Remulla would search for the alleged violations on the franchise of Amcara Broadcasting Network Inc., an ABS-CBN subsidiary company. He would also question the “block-time arrangement” between AMCARA and ABS-CBN that permitted its television broadcasts beyond the termination of its permit.
    • Thirdly and lastly, the National Telecommunications Commission made a second blow to shut the broadcast down. The lawmakers, who supported the network’s franchise renewal, objected to these sustained inquiries.

Apparently, these lawmakers have had ample time to make plausible actions to help the government ease the current situations. They can, also, expedite other actions to help the Filipino citizens and the business organizations recover from their losses. If these lawmakers think about these issues, they can provide actions and strategies to flatten the curve of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, things happen differently and the constant fights between the red and the yellow banners produced horrors in these challenging times.

Well, what do we expect? This is who we are. There are crabs in all of us – the crab mentality. That is the truth that we cannot escape. We need to re-think the next time we brag about our accomplishments and our Filipino nationality and pride. We need to re-consider how we fight one another for power and revenge. We have nothing to blow our horns. If we fail to stop, we, in the end, can see ourselves fighting towards our destruction and ruins. 

References

Gascon, M. (30 July 2020). Administration lawmakers push more probes of ABS-CBN. Retrieved July 31, 2020, from https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1314217/administration-lawmakers-push-more-probes-of-abs-cbn

Tell the Truth: Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 Part 2

Other’s Vantage Point

The Daily Tribune (TDT) took its side of the argument bit by bit. It highlighted that the Anti-Terrorism Bills (Senate Bill 1083 and House Bill 6875) underwent “tremendous deliberations in the Senate.” If this statement was the case, then there should be no loopholes of the Bill. If the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 was a correction for the Human Security Act of 2007, then, there should be no problems with this Act.

Firstly, the broad definition of the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 would asphyxiate, reduce, and securitize civic space and rights of individuals at work. It meant that they would place workers, trade union activists, and other human rights players and protectors under dangerous situations. They would agonize from baseless attacks, harassment, undiscerning and groundless rounds of capture, intimidation, and killings at the hands of the law enforcement agents, the military officers, and security agencies.

Secondly, the broad definition of the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 highlighted many provisions of the bills that seriously contradicted international law. Under the international labor standards, the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 could only dwindle or destabilize the implementation of the right to establish, including the right to strike, interrupt the principles of freedom of association.

The Ever-Changing Labels of Threats

Thirdly, in Section 9 of both the Senate Bill 1083 and House Bill 6875, readers should know that these Bills would outlaw individuals who expressed an opinion or other forms of expression in support of the unproven terrorists. Even if these people did not take part in the commission of a terrorism act, police officials would charge them and seize them by expressing their opinions and views. Considering the broad definition of terrorism in the Bills, any individuals who expressed their sentiments or embrace paraphernalia encouraging a demonstration or mass action would be at risk of the provision.

Fourthly, there have been plenty of drawbacks or pitfalls of the Act. Government leaders should know it instead of passing it urgently. This time when COVID-19 pandemic strikes, what place on Earth did these people have space and time working on this Act. How on Earth did these Bills or Act of 2020 come to realize when pandemic produced panic in all of us.

My Perspective

If the government of the Philippines knows what it is doing, then it does or will not allow any harm to the public. The government leaders should not devour the last shadow of democracy that left in us. The government officials should serve as role models of the people and citizens. The people are watching despite the horror and tension. Intelligent people, not the trolls on Facebook and YouTube, are listening. They are not blind, deaf, and mute. Oh, gosh! I am scared. If things do not seem right, who else is fixing this hullabaloo?

For further details, please continue reading here and there.

References

    • The Daily Tribune. (2020). ABS-CBN fuels misinformation on legislation. Retrieved July 7, 2020, from https://tribune.net.ph/index.php/2020/06/08/abs-cbn-fuels-misinformation-on-legislation/
    • Burrow, S., & Yoshida, S. (2020). Anti-Terror Bills (Senate Bill 1083 and House Bill 6875) violate international labor standards. A letter to President Duterte. Retrieved July 7, 2020, from https://www.ituc-csi.org/IMG/pdf/ituc_letter_on_anti_terrorism_law_philippines.pdf

Tell the Truth: Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 Part 1

The Tribune’s Side

The report from The Daily Tribune (TDT) concerning the Anti-Terrorism Bills (Senate Bill 1083 and House Bill 6875) charged ABS-CBN of misinformation. Before we proceed, we need to define what misinformation is.

The term “misinformation” refers to incorrect or imprecise information. For example, people commit this misinformation when they spread false rumors, do insults, and make pranks. However, the term “disinformation” refers to the use of hateful and malevolent content, such as computational propaganda, deceptions, swindles, and spearphishing (The Daily Tribune).

So, TDT charged ABS-CBN of committing and endorsing half-truth. According to The Daily Tribune, ABS-CBN along with Anne Curtis, Bea Alonzo, Angel Locsin, Kathryn Bernardo, Liza Soberano, and many others persuaded the multitudes to dishonor the House of Representatives. TDT targeted Anne Curtis and her deceptive act of reading the Bill without understanding it. It also mentioned that Anne Curtis incorporated the link to the Committee Report of the House bill on its website. Additionally, it included the names of the celebrities, such as Bea Alonzo, Angel Locsin, Kathryn Bernardo, Liza Soberano, and many others by highlighting their relations to ABS-CBN (The Daily Tribune).

The Ever-Changing Labels of Threats

TDT asserted that ABS-CBN and its propaganda machine grew mobilized. It used the term blind followers for those who listened to those celebrities. It then mentioned that terrorism has been a real menace. It accentuated that the President’s move to sign the Bill was urgent. It pointed out that government information on national security has been highly classified. It ordered the people or the public that they should not have any second-guess in terms of the government’s intention. It asserted that there would be no problems if people could read the provisions.

Also, TDT emphasized Section 4 of Senate Bill 1083 and House Bill 6875. It cited that the Bill about terrorism should not include the following:

    • Advocacy
    • Protest
    • Dissent
    • Stoppage of work
    • Industrial or mass action, and
    • Other similar exercises of civil and political rights, which are not intended to cause death or serious physical harm to a person, to endanger a person’s life, or to create a serious risk to public safety.”

Moreover, TDT underscored that articulating disagreements and viewpoints have never been considered terrorist acts. It made sure that strikes and rallies have never been terrorist acts. Besides, it mentioned that exercising free speech has never been terrorist acts.

Finally, it concluded that the Bill underwent intense scrutiny by Congress and the Senate. Then, it talked about the media frenzy that worked hard to destroy the integrity of the House, while ending its report to warn, most likely, the fate of ABS-CBN franchise.

For further details, please continue reading here and there.

References

    • The Daily Tribune. (2020). ABS-CBN fuels misinformation on legislation. Retrieved July 7, 2020, from https://tribune.net.ph/index.php/2020/06/08/abs-cbn-fuels-misinformation-on-legislation/
    • Burrow, S., & Yoshida, S. (2020). Anti-Terror Bills (Senate Bill 1083 and House Bill 6875) violate international labor standards. A letter to President Duterte. Retrieved July 7, 2020, from https://www.ituc-csi.org/IMG/pdf/ituc_letter_on_anti_terrorism_law_philippines.pdf

Second Blow: NTC still hunts ABS-CBN despite COVID-19

Misamis Oriental (1 July 2020) – On May 5, 2020, the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) issued a Cease and Desist Order (CADO) against the broadcasting company ABS-CBN due to the expiry of the legislative franchise. The expiry of the franchise would be on May 4.

As well, the NTC, on an order letter on May 4, compelled ABS-CBN to discontinue its broadcast operations – radio and television broadcasting nationwide. This issue between the network and the NTC happened again due to the former’s side of having expired Congressional Franchise license.

The NTC highlighted the Radio Control Law or the Republic Act No. 3846. In this Act, “no person, firm, company, association, or corporation shall construct, install, establish, or operate a radio transmitting station, or radio receiving station used for commercial purposes, or a radio broadcasting station, without having first obtained a franchise therefor from the Congress of the Philippines,” as echoed by the NTC.

ABS-CBN Logo in a Black Mode

As well, the cessation of the Republic Act. No 7966 that granted the network a 25-year contract to function and work its TV and radio broadcasting stations became real as the NTC confirmed the verdict.

Solicitor General Jose Calida succeeded in a quo warranto petition against the giant network of which he filed on May 3. He also warned the NTC to grant a provisional authority to ABS-CBN. He said that the NTC could not grant provisional authorities to ABS-CBN Corporation and its affiliate since they should secure a franchise from Congress first.

On June 29, the NTC again made a scene to stop ABS-CBN’s digital broadcast on TVPlus in Metro Manila and SKY’s satellite broadcast nationwide. The reasons why and how ABS-CBN faces its challenges and more are available at the Inquirer.Net <newsinfo.inquirer.net> and Manila Bulletin <news.mb.com.ph>.

References

Mercado, N. A. (5 May 2020). Breaking: NTC orders ABS-CBN to stop broadcast operations. Retrieved July 1, 2020, from https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1270074/ntc-issues-cease-and-desist-order-vs-abs-cbn

Rosario, B. (29 June 2020). NTC to stop operations of ABS-CBN TV Plus, affiliate network. Retrieved July 1, 2020, from https://news.mb.com.ph/2020/06/29/ntc-to-stop-operations-of-abs-cbn-tv-plus-affiliate-network/