MAAARING pagkalooban ng bagong prankisa ang ABS-CBN sa pamamagitan ng people’s initiative o ang kapangyarihan ng mga mamamayan na magpanukala at magpasa ng batas, mag-aproba o magbasura ng isang batas na naipasa ng Kongreso.
Lumutang ang nasabing isyu matapos ibasura ng Committee on Legislative Franchises ng Kamara sa botong 70-11 ang hirit na prankisa ng ABS-CBN.
“We also take note of the discussions around using the mechanism of the people’s initiative to grant ABS-CBN a franchise. As provided in Article VI, Section 32 of the Constitution, Congress must ‘provide for a system of initiative and referendum, and the exceptions therefrom, whereby the people can directly propose and enact laws, or approve or reject any act or law or part thereof passed by Congress.’ That system is presently found in Republic Act No. 6735, or the “Iniative and Referendum Act,” ayon sa kalatas kahapon ni Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque.
Sinabi ni Roque, ipinauubaya ng Palasyo sa Korte Suprema ang pagpapasya kung uubrang bigyan ng bagong prankisa ang ABS-CBN sa pamamagitan ng people’s initiative kahit malinaw aniya sa Public Telecommunications Policy Act na Kongreso lamang ang puwedeng magkaloob nito.
“Whether the franchise of ABS-CBN may be granted through a people’s initiative despite the clear wording of R.A. 7925, whether it matters that a franchise bill is a private bill that must “originate exclusively in the House of Representatives” in accordance with Article VI, Section 24 of the Constitution — these and related questions we leave to the Supreme Court, as the final arbiter of the appropriate interpretation of these provisions in the Constitution and our laws,” dagdag niya.
“We will defer to the Court if ever it rules on this issue in the future,” aniya.
Batay sa July 3-6 National Mobile Survey ng Social Weather Stations (SWS), mayorya sa adult Filipinos ay naniniwala na dapat i-renew ng Kongreso ang prankisa ng ABS-CBN.