DOF chief: If SC finds violations by ABS-CBN, then Duterte right in upholding the law
If the Supreme Court rules that media giant ABS-CBN Corp. indeed violated constitutional restrictions and franchise rules, it would mean the Duterte administration has been upholding the rule of law, Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III said on Tuesday (Feb. 18).
On the sidelines of the Bureau of Internal Revenue’s (BIR) 2020 tax campaign kickoff, Dominguez was asked to comment on the impending shutdown of ABS-CBN if its franchise was not renewed.
He replied: “I have no idea. Sorry, that’s not my department.”
When asked if closing down ABS-CBN may impact on investor sentiment, Dominguez replied: “A lawsuit has been filed, right? There’s a claim by the OSG [Office of the Solicitor General] that there’s a violation of the regulations and, in fact, it might be a constitutional violation.”
“I think if that’s proven, the investors will say, ‘oh, these guys have been upholding the rule of law,'” Dominguez said.
Dominguez was a childhood friend and former classmate of President Rodrigo Duterte. He also was the finance manager during Mr. Duterte’s campaign for the 2016 presidential elections.
Separately, Internal Revenue Deputy Commissioner Arnel Guballa clarified that ABS-CBN no longer had any unpaid tax liabilities to the BIR.
However, Guballa said there remained a case pending at the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) involving an ABS-CBN sister-company.
On Tuesday, four big business groups asked Congress to consider pending bills aimed at renewing ABS-CBN’s franchise, which will lapse next month.
Edited by TSB
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