THE EDITORIAL BOARD of Bicol Today sees the expediency to renew the franchise of ABS-CBN at this time when urgent news, information dissemination, knowledge transfer, and developing of events must be shared to the public.
To get informed at the right moment is very crucial at this time of global pandemic, when economic recession worldwide is anticipated, the COVID-19 threat may decimate a sizable portion of the global population, and civil unrest, emergence of war, and additional threats of infectious diseases.
The global crisis is affecting our country and the Filipino people.
We need ABS-CBN, an effective and efficient media organization, to open again with a renewal of franchise, so that it will join hands with other media organizations, private or government-owned.
The Filipino has the right to be informed. The Filipino community has the need to know.
Filipinos have the privilege to be entertained, to enjoy and laugh with TV shows, and shed tears on tragic events, to be amazed and awed while seeing events found wonderful to their senses.
These shows might be illusory and palliatives for them to enjoy and forget, for the time being, the harsh realities of grinding poverty and economic woes Filipinos are currently suffering now, at this time of pandemic and the worsening economic situation.
In the positive side, ABS-CBN had bridged the communication and information gap of news, between the highly urbanized growth regions and the remotest rural areas.
It has delivered timely news, specifically news about disasters and calamities when the average Filipino family is glued to the TV set, waiting for the latest unfoldment of events.
We, the editorial board of Bicol Today, uphold freedom of the press, and by this freedom, a free press has provided all sectors adequate media space.
The free press has provided dissenters to air grievances and criticism, and critics the freedom to air their protests. Politics, economic managers, public executives, and the government have benefitted so much in the free press. Important developments and situations leading to economic growth enjoy much media space.
Persecuting the media and trampling down press freedom would not guarantee the success of tyrannical and despotic rule, nor the triumphant rule of dictatorial administration.
Looking at historical narratives about dictatorial regimes and the free media, the worst State clampdown would only push the free press into the underground where the voices are heard but not seen. Invisible among the despots, but heard by the oppressed masses.
We, the editorial board of Bicol Today, support the renewal of the Congressional franchise of ABS-CBN.