MANILA

CBCP vows to reach 'areas that angels dare not tread'

WITH the renewal of its broadcast franchise even without the signature of President Rodrigo Duterte, the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) vowed to continue helping cooperatives and farmers in "areas that angels dare not tread".

"Our stations try their very best for nation building and we are helping disaster management, cooperatives, and farmers to plant better crops. So we are in areas that angels dare not tread," said Father Francis Lucas, president of the Catholic Media Network (CMN).

CMN's franchise was renewed for another 25 years after Republic Act (RA) 11319 lapsed into law on April 22.

Under the 1987 Constitution, the President has 30 days to sign a measure into law or veto it after receiving from Congress.

In an interview, Lucas said they were just glad that their franchise was renewed two years since their license expired in 2017.

"It took us sometime. (But) whatever, which way, for as long as we get the franchise. Because we are serving Filipino people through the Catholic values," said Lucas.

"We praise that the CBCP franchise is now a law," he added.

Founded in 1997, CMN is a network of radio stations owned and operated by the CBCP.

Its existence was put in limbo in 2017 after lawmakers threatened not to renew its franchise due to the bishops being critical of the Duterte administration.

Its 29 radio stations, however, have been able to continue operations.

With their franchise renewed, Lucas said they are committed to continue with their advocacy as a broadcast station.

He also said they want to enhance their hybrid strategy in broadcasting in order to keep in step with modern technology.

"If we bring the social media in the scope of radio broadcast, and penetrating livestreaming and internet radios, then you do a hybrid strategy," said Lucas. (HDT/SunStar Philippines)


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