first_imgAbante on Thursday filed House Bill 6701 that would amend Republic Act 7925, or the Public Telecommunications Policy Act, by abolishing the NTC and transferring its powers and functions to the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT).“All assets, including the existing appropriation and monies allocated to the NTC will likewise be transferred to the DICT, and the department secretary may also authorize the sale of these properties through public bidding, negotiated sale, lease or any other form of divestment or transmission of rights,” the measure stated.According to Abante, he has long been thinking of getting rid of the commission as it is a “useless” agency, which recently ordered ABS CBN network to cease and desist from operations following the expiration of its franchise.“Our NTC, supposedly in charge of regulating and promoting the telecommunications industry has turned out to be one of the most inept and useless agencies whose only relevance lies in being another model for sheer wastage of taxpayer money,” he said.“Its failure all these years to invoke sanctions against the companies poorly serving the people’s telecommunications needs is a perfect reason to abolish it already,” Abante added.He further said both houses of Congress have moved to allow the continuous operation of ABS-CBN, with the House by writing to the NTC and the Senate passing a resolution calling on the commission to issue a provisional authority to operate on ABS-CBN.“The NTC should be abolished and its functions and powers be transferred to the DICT where it can be better exercised and hopefully be more responsive to the needs of our changing times,” Abante said.Over at the Senate, at least eight senators have signed a resolution on Thursday urging the NTC to reconsider its cease and desist order against the broadcast operations of ABS-CBN.Senator Risa Hontiveros said that the resolution is a “reiteration” of the previous sense of the Senate – adopted in March – telling NTC officials that ABS-CBN should be allowed to operate while Congress continues to tackle its franchise renewal bid.“Nilagay sa panganib ng cease and desist order na inihain laban sa ABS-CBN ang trabaho ng mga mangagagawa na puwede rin i-consider na frontliners sa pandemic ngayon,” Hontiveros said.Among the points raised in the new resolution is an NTC memorandum saying all permits, certificates and licenses that have expired during the enhanced community quarantine are deemed extended for 60 days after the lockdown is lifted.“So bakit parang sa ABS-CBN lamang naging selective ang paghihigpit ng NTC?” Hontiveros said. “Baka kasi the loophole is not in the law in itself pero nasa tamang pag–implementa ng batas.”Under the Constitution, a Congressional resolution does not have the force and effect of law, but is simply an opinion of a legislative body./PN MANILA – House Minority Leader Bienvenido Abante Jr. underscored the need for the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) to be abolished as he hit several issues against the agency–including its order to shut down media giant ABS-CBN. House Minority Leader Bienvenido Abante Jr. is calling on Congress to abolish the National Telecommunications Commission as he hit several issues against the agency–including its order to shut down media giant ABS-CBN. BIENVENIDO ABANTE JR./FACEBOOKlast_img

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