The Supreme Court en banc on Tuesday, June 23, dismissed Solicitor General Jose Calida's quo warranto petition against ABS-CBN Corporation for being moot, sources confirmed to Rappler.
Calida filed the quo warranto petition last February 10, alleging that ABS-CBN Corporation and Convergence violated terms of their franchises.
Sources told Rappler that the petition has become moot because ABS-CBN Corporation's franchise already expired on May 4. ABS-CBN Channel 2 went off air on May 5 after the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) issued a cease and desist order against it.
The junking does not affect ABS-CBN's petition for Temporary Restraining Order (TRO), or the total voiding of the NTC's cease and desist order, which is handled by a different justice-in-charge, meaning that the shutdown is still in effect.
The same sources said the petition insofar as ABS-CBN Convergence is concerned is still pending. But the franchise of ABS-CBN Convergence, which operates ABS-CBN Mobile, also already expired. In fact it expired on March 17, before the franchise of ABS-CBN Corporation expired.
In a disclosure to the stock exchange, ABS-CBN Corporation said “in the meantime, Convergence has suspended operations which require a legislative franchise or provisional authority."
Franchise hearings in the House of Representatives are still ongoing, and are stalled as lawmakers dwell on the citizenship of ABS-CBN Chairman Emeritus Gabby Lopez despite a Department of Justice (DOJ) declaration that he is a Filipino citizen.