After seventeen brilliant years, the highly rated and popular news and public affairs show “Dos por dos” of ABS-CBN broadcasters Gerry Baja and Anthony Taberna aired its last episode yesterday, Friday, 31 July.
The reason is highly known by everyone– ABS-CBN failed to get its franchise to air radio and TV programs thru free airwaves, thus, affecting its revenues. Management decided to let go Baja and Taberna, long-time members of its news and public affairs team.
Baja began his career in 1994 as newswriter of ABS-CBN. Three years later, Taberna joined ABS-CBN DZMM as a Radyo Patrol. They both served for more than twenty five years.
Baja says the station’s management is now incapable of supporting its programs due to diminishing station revenues. Management admits that operations of its online news sites are unable to sustain its current business model.
Since May, ABS-CBN has been airing their programs thru SkyCable and other cable operators. The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) later moved to forbid the network to air even using the cable network.
ABS-CBN remains an influential medium of news and opinions. The station came under fire when President Rodrigo Roa Duterte blamed the management and owners of political biases especially during the 2016 presidential elections. Duterte accused the station of not airing his political propaganda material.
After several and highly public threats, Duterte thru his political allies in Congress and even the Solicitor General were deployed to weaken the station’s standing before members of Congress. Several hearings after, the Committee on Legislative franchises voted not to grant ABS-CBN its franchise. The franchise ended by May but the decision to finally end the life of the network came several weeks later.
Three Congressmen who reportedly orchestrated the fall of ABS-CBN namely partylist Congressman Mike Defensor, Cong Marcoleta and Cavite Congressman Remulla are reportedly conspiring with former ABS-CBN employees to seize lands and assets of ABS-CBN.