MANILA -- Some of the Philippines' largest business groups on Tuesday called for a "balanced, fair and timely" consideration of bills seeking to renew ABS-CBN Corp's franchise, which the government's top lawyer questioned before the Supreme Court.
Congress must "judiciously address" the issues raised against ABS-CBN, taking into "serious account" press freedom, according to the joint statement issued by the Makati Business Club, the Management Association of the Philippines, the Institute of Corporate Directors and the Institute for Solidarity in Asia.
The Solicitor General asked the Supreme Court to nullify ABS-CBN Corp's franchise citing several violations. The Lopez-run network has denied wrongdoing.
ABS-CBN's 25-year franchise will expire in March. The House of Representatives has not begun hearings on several bills seeking its renewal. The Senate Committee on Public Services, headed by Sen. Grace Poe, is planning its own inquiry.
On Tuesday, the Solicitor General asked the Supreme Court to gag ABS-CBN from discussing the case in public.