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Personal vendetta? Rep. Eric Yap reveals why he wants an investigation on ABS-CBN franchise

Rep. Eric Yap admitted he has a personal reason for wanting a probe into the ABS-CBN franchise

On May 11, ACT-CIS Partylist Rep. Eric Yap, together with Davao City Rep. Paolo Duterte and Rep. Bambol Tolentino, filed a resolution with the House Committee on Legislative Franchises to investigate ABS-CBN’s alleged franchise violations.

The violations mentioned were: the operation of a pay-per-view channel through Kapamilya Box Office channel on ABS-CBN TV Plus and the issuance of Philippine Depository Receipts (PDRs) to non-Filipino citizens.

Both allegations had already been previously settled by the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission.

In an ANC interview, Yap shared a personal reason for launching the probe. It was apparently in reaction to the network’s allegedly biased reporting of Deputy Speaker Paolo Duterte’s alleged involvement in illegal drug activity.

Yap was referring to the 2017 drug scheme where P6.4 billion worth of shabu was smuggled from China and the suspect named Mark Taguba involved Paolo Duterte. According to Yap, ABS-CBN falsely accused Duterte when it didn’t further clarify his non-involvement, which for him implicated false news to the public.

“Ako, this is my personal opinion, pero sabi ko nga isang boto lang ako. Pero kung pwede man, i-open ko rin yung experience ng kaibigan ko sa ABS-CBN. May kaibigan ako dati na alleged drug lord siya, nasa hearing, nilabas ng ABS-CBN News na tong si ganito — sabihin ko na pangalan si Paolo Duterte — na sinabi daw druglord.

“Yung Mark Taguba sinabi na hindi niya na-meet si Paolo Duterte, wala nang bumawi, wala na nagsabi sa news na hindi pala siya kasama dito, sinabi ng Mark Taguba.

“So ang nangyari, naiwan sa utak ng tao na, ‘Ah eto druglord pala ito kasi ganito.’ Pero yung totoo, kumbaga, hindi naman talaga siya kakilala ng tao so naiwan na sa isip ng tao.”

Yap further emphasized that the delivery of information by media should be constructed properly as to not give misconceptions to the public and not cause any harm to those concerned.

“Sa akin, ‘yung mga buhay ng tao na nasisira rin, ‘yun yung ibang concerns. Marami kayong natutulungang buhay, totoo yun. Pero may mga buhay rin na nasisira. Okay lang po yung mga guilty, kung rapist talaga. Kaya lang paano kung hindi?

“Kasi ‘yung tao kaibigan ko, alam ko naman kung sa tingin ko naman totoo ‘yung sinasabi against him, e hindi naman ako siguro magiging kaibigan niya.”

As a response, ANC anchor Karen Davila said, “No anchor or journalist would ever name any authority as a drug lord and calling it a fact because that would be extremely libelous. It will be of course ABS-CBN who will be checking into these allegations by looking through the files, looking at all the stories done.”

In addition, many view the request for further investigation on ABS-CBN’s franchise as irrelevant, for the issues raised were already addressed and clarified.

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