Manila — The Philippine government ordered the country’s largest broadcast network, ABS-CBN, to stop broadcasting immediately on Tuesday after its license expired. The network, which employs about 11,000 people, went off the air on free TV and radio across the Philippines on Tuesday evening.
“This is in compliance with the cease and desist order issued by the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) today that prohibits ABS-CBN from continuing its broadcast operations effective immediately,” the company said in a statement.
Congress has sole authority in the Philippines to grant broadcast licenses, but lawmakers in the Lower House, who are overwhelmingly allied with President, have declined to act on bills seeking the renewal of ABS-CBN’s permit. Duterte has repeatedly stated his disdain for the network and the family who own it.
Critical coverage of the government’shas angered the Philippine leader, but his gripe with ABS-CBN predates that, going back to the 2016 presidential election when he accused the network of refusing to run a number of his campaign’s political ads.
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