THE SUPREME COURT dismissed for mootness the petition of broadcast network ABS-CBN Corp. to stop the order of the telecommunications regulator directing it to go off air.
In a statement, the court said the ABS-CBN’s petition against the cease-and-desist order of the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) was dismissed for being moot as the Congress denied its franchise application last month.
“Because of this supervening event, there is no actual substantial relief which ABS-CBN Corporation would be entitled to regardless of the Court’s disposition of the merits of the Petition,” the court’s public information said in a statement.
It said that 14 justices voted to dismiss the petition except for Associate Justice Priscilla J. Baltazar-Padilla, who was on leave.
The network went off air on May 5 after the NTC issued the order after its 25-year legislative franchise expired on May 4 while its franchise renewal application was pending at the House of Representatives.
The Lower House denied its bid for franchise after several hearings.
The network filed a petition for temporary restraining order or preliminary injunction against the order of the telecommunications regulator.
In its petition, the network said that it was losing P30 million to P35 million everyday that it is off air and would risk the jobs and livelihood of its more than 11,000 employees.
The court in June also dismissed for mootness the quo warranto petition of the Office of the Solicitor General filed in February seeking to nullify the franchise of the network over alleged violations such as allowing foreign investors to take part in its ownership by issuing Philippine depositary receipts to foreigners, among others. — Vann Marlo M. Villegas