QC court denies injunction bid vs. NTC’s cease and desist order
MANILA, Philippines — The Quezon City Regional Trial Court (RTC) denied NOW Cable Inc.’s petition for a preliminary injunction against a September 2021 cease and desist order issued by the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC).
NTC issued the cease and desist order last year against NOW Cable following the expiration of its 25-year legislative franchise to operate pay cable television and interactive multimedia services.
Subsequently, NTC recalled the company’s assigned frequencies at 26.35 and 27.35 gigahertz, including all its channel and provisional authorities, for lack of a legislative franchise.
But the cable firm maintained it is a holder of a temporary permit that grants it the authority to operate until February 2024
It added that the NTC has yet to provide them a copy of the cease and desist order.
“It (the company) will suffer grave and irreparable injury if forced to shut down its Pay TV or Cable TV operations. The power of the government should not be used as a blanket authority to confiscate private property that comprises the lifeblood of its business,” NOW Cable said.
In the decision, Quezon City RTC Branch 91 Presiding Judge Kathleen Sario Dela Cruz-Espinosa said the cable firm failed to prove its clear and unmistakable right to be protected by an injunction.
“From the foregoing asseverations of the plaintiff vis a vis the opposition and reply filed, this court finds that the plaintiff could not be said to have been able to protect its right in esse or its clear and unmistakable right to be protected by the writ it is praying for,” according to the 6-page counrt decision dated Sept. 8 but made public on Thursday.
“At this stage of the controversy, therefore, inasmuch as plaintiff’s right in esse is not clear and unmistakable, the court could not grant the preliminary injunction prayed for,” it added.
The court added that NOW Cable also failed to question the existence and due execution, and authenticity of the cease and desist order issued by the NTIC.
“Thus, the sole issue for the court’s determination is whether or not, under the foregoing factual milieu, a writ of preliminary injunction may be issued to enjoin defendant NTC from implementing the cease and desist order,” the court said.
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