Up until today, the future of media giant ABS-CBN’s employees — including those who are yet to be laid off by the company — remains uncertain.
But a lawmaker from Iloilo, who voted for the non-renewal of ABS-CBN’s broadcast franchise — Janette Garin — expressed her concern for ABS-CBN employees in an online forum with members of the press.
According to the former Department of Health secretary, she and other government officials made it clear that they would be taking necessary steps to ensure that the network’s 11,000 employees won’t go jobless in the middle of the pandemic.
“On the issue of the 11,000 workers, we were very clear in stating and we were assured by the government that there are steps are being undertaken so that we are one with them, that nobody will lose [their] job,” she said.
This prompted various reactions on social media including some from Kapamilya celebrities Liza Soberano, Maris Racal, and entertainment reporter and Ogie Diaz.
Maris, for one, cited the death of an ABS-CBN employee who passed away from a heart attack after finding out about her retrenchment brought about by the shut down of the network.
“I hope she knows we already lost a soul,” Maris wrote.
i hope she knows we already lost a soul. 🙂 https://t.co/IJgcPvA2qh— Maris Racal (@MissMarisRacal) July 24, 2020
Ogie Diaz, on the other hand, said he couldn’t understand her statement as their actions are getting him confused.
He wrote: “Sorry ha? Anlakas maka-tanga ng statement na ito. Mema lang?”
Sorry ha? Anlakas maka-tanga ng statement na ito. Mema lang? https://t.co/FaTKFJuxrs— ogie diaz (@ogiediaz) July 24, 2020
With more and more ABS-CBN getting laid off, Anne Curtis and Liza Soberano, among others, also reacted to Cong. Garin’s statement and asked whatever happened to the promise made by those working in the government.
So paano na po? Anong nangyare? 🤷🏻♀️ https://t.co/4w9rth6oh1— Anne Curtis-Smith (@annecurtissmith) July 24, 2020
Ano na po nangyari? 😭 https://t.co/fdCSva5KRz— Liza Soberano (@lizasoberano) July 24, 2020
Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Undersecretary Ana Dione also previously shared the same remarks, saying: “We are ready to extend the necessary assistance to all employees who may be displaced as a result of the congressional action.”
She went on: “The verdict may be unfortunate for that would mean imminent job loss for a significant number of employees of one of the largest media enterprises in the country. But the workers are not helpless.”
Various departments of ABS-CBN have already announced earlier that a chunk of the network’s employees will be gone by August 31.
Meanwhile, ABS-CBN remains off the air as it stopped broadcast operations last May 5, 2020 following a cease and desist order from the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC).
After twelve hearings in Congress, a House panel decided to dump ABS-CBN’s application for a new franchise last July 10.
Right now, ABS-CBN programs can be watched via cable and on various online platforms via the Kapamilya Channel.