Cayetano: House to tackle ABS-CBN franchise renewal bid before yearend

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, October 29) — The House of Representatives will finally tackle the franchise renewal bill for a major television network.

House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano said the House committee on legislative franchises will hold a hearing on the franchise of ABS-CBN before the year ends.

"Siguro (Perhaps) before the end of the year the hearings will start. But we have a little bit of time," Cayetano told reporters Tuesday.

The network's franchise is set to expire on March 30 next year. At least five bills have been filed to extend the franchise for another 25 years.

"Definitely we'll have hearings kasi may mga issues na kailangang i-resolve," Cayetano said, adding that the House will be fair and will give everyone a chance to air their side.

[Translation: Definitely we'll have hearings because there are issues that need to be resolved.]

Last year, President Rodrigo Duterte said he would reject the renewal of ABC-CBN's franchise.

He said this is because the network failed to air his presidential campaign ads in 2016, even after they were paid to do so.

The president has repeatedly slammed the network in his speeches.

READ: Duterte says he will object to renewal of ABS-CBN franchise

CNN Philippines' correspondent Xiane Arcangel contributed to this story.