Millions are still missing ABS-CBN’s coverage of calamities, especially those in living in the provinces and far-flung areas. Other upcoming typhoons won’t be as strong as Rolly, but there is no question that the dissemination of information is essential as Tonyo approaches.
Former COMELEC Commissioner Goyo Larrazabal previously noted that far-flung areas would have benefited the most from ABS-CBN Regional, but sadly it isn’t around anymore because of the network’s shutdown.
You know what could have helped disseminate information about the incoming storm and how to get ready for it?@ABSCBNNews
But they were denied a franchise…
So now many people are in the dark…
— Goyo Y. Larrazabal (@GoyYLarrazabal) October 31, 2020
However, the absence of a franchise doesn’t matter, ABS-CBN will continue serving the Filipino people, even if it means sacrificing a lot.
Kapamilya reporter Jacque Manabat and her team thanked the Catanduanes people for helping them in their coverage of Typhoon Rolly in the province.
“Franchise or none, we are here. We heard your call,” she said in Facebook post.
“Although, our resources may now be a challenge, our team finds ways to bring updates,” she added.
Because 280 characters wont cut it.
Dios mabalos, Catanduanes.
You inspire us.
— Jacque Manabat (@jacquemanabat) November 7, 2020
The basic necessities such as food and water were scarce but no one ever complained.
“There’s no electricity in the island. Food and water supply are also insufficient. Signal is intermittent. But no one complains.”
Manabat was grateful to everyone who helped out, from the driver to the people who carry water.
“I admire the men behind the camera. They multitask. They go beyond their job description – cameraman/driver/cook/lightman/taga-igib ng tubig/ taga-hanap ng signal, and whatnots.”
She was surprised at how the people immediately got back up after Rolly knocked them down.
“We gather strength from the stories of the people of Catanduanes. We are inspired by their resourcefulness and optimism albeit disaster-stricken.”
Her team also found it hard to get to Catanduanes but it was all worth it because the people there are special.
“They are the reason we are still here. They are the reason we drove for half a day and took a ship that rhythmically swayed by the strong waves.
“’Kapamilya po kami,’ they tell us.” she added.
In of her recent posts, Manabat showed how a telco tower San Miguel, Catanduanes was toppled by Rolly.
A resident also explained to Manabat how hopeless the people are in Catanduanes.
““Napakahirap po kasi isa siya sa isolated area. Nahirapan sila mag-connect sa kanilang kapamilya. Ang DZMM po, kahit papaano, mayroon signal doon. Pero ngayon, wala kahit isa po. Ngayong wala pong kuryente, di na po namin alam kung ano ang mga nangyayari dito sa main,” she told Manabat.
With ABS-CBN handicapped, GMA news is now the number one network in the country, and also has the widest news coverage.
Netizens called on Kapuso reporter Tina Perez to do a better job in reporting relevant news.
— AltABSCBN (@AltABSCBN) November 1, 2020
— Dan (@dgcrx) November 1, 2020
Another netizen pointed out that there are too many people who don’t have radios or access to the internet and only rely on free TV.
“Madaming walang radyo. Madaming walang internet. Umaasa sa free TV. Hindi nga alam ng nanay ko sa Legazpi na signal number 5 na doon kung hindi ko pa sinabi habang sinasalanta sila ng bagyo. Nakakagalit!” he said.
Rappler reporter Lian Buan believes ABS-CBN’s service to the public can’t be matched by any other network.
The effect of ABS-CBN's shutdown on the the impact of typhoon on Filipinos will probably have no specific tangible measure.
— Lian Buan (@lianbuan) November 1, 2020
UP Professor Danilo Arao blamed the lack of information dissemination on Pres. Rodrigo Duterte.
MISSING: ABS-CBN used to be the only TV station that reached certain areas of the country. Those who claim that there still exists thousands of news media organizations conveniently forget the usefulness of the ABS-CBN Regional Network Group. Two words: Duterte legacy.
— Danilo Arao (@dannyarao) November 1, 2020
Journalist Inday Espina Varona also recalled the time Kapamilya reporter Jeff Canoy was asked by Aurora police on when ABS-CBN would come back.
— inday espina varona (@indayevarona) November 1, 2020
Blogger Ederic Eder wants people to remember who ordered ABS-CBN’s shutdown.
Sino na nga ulit ang mastermind ng pagpapasara sa ABS-CBN TV and radio stations? https://t.co/SfsBzUsIuZ
— Ederic Eder 🇵🇭 (@ederic) October 31, 2020
One netizen summed it all up the best.
“Kawawa talaga ‘yung mga taong walang access sa impormasyon ngayon. Buhay at kaligtasan nila ang nakataya. ‘Yung mga bumoto na ipasara ang ABS, pati ‘yung gunggong na presidente at sumuporta sa kanya, sana hindi kayo patahimikin ng konsensya ninyo habambuhay.” he said.
Kawawa talaga 'yung mga taong walang access sa impormasyon ngayon. Buhay at kaligtasan nila ang nakataya. 'Yung mga bumoto na ipasara ang ABS, pati 'yung gunggong na presidente at sumuporta sa kanya, sana hindi kayo patahimikin ng konsensya ninyo habambuhay.
— Richard Bolisay (@richardbolisay) November 1, 2020