ABS-CBN TAKING GMA7 PROTEST TO SUPREME COURT

Quezon City, June 3, 2003 -- Broadcast media giant ABS-CBN Broadcasting 
Corp. will take all the way to the Supreme Court (SC) the case of unfair 
competition filed against them and three cable firm affiliates by chief 
rival GMA Network Inc.

In an interview with reporters, ABS-CBN chairman and CEO Eugenio Lopez III 
said the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) is in no position to 
rule on the GMA complaint as the ABS-CBN chief questioned the NTC's 
jurisdiction on the matter.

"We'll take this all the way to the SC. It's not the NTC's jurisdiction," 
he said.

For its part, GMA said in a statement that "there is simply no credible 
reason the decision of the NTC and its rules and regulations should not be 
followed."

"Skycable and its affiliates cannot just simply ignore the fact that they 
applied for their respective authority to operate and have operated for the 
past 10 years under these same rules and regulations," GMA said. "It is 
just too late in the day to repudiate them (NTC rules). They must therefore 
respect the NTC decisions."

Last May 6, GMA filed a P12-million civil case for damages before the 
Quezon City Regional Trial Court against ABS-CBN, Central CATV (Skycable), 
Philippine Home Cable Holdings Inc. (Home Cable) and Pilipino Cable Corp. 
(Sun Cable).

GMA has also filed a complaint with the NTC regarding alleged signal 
disruption and new channel assignments on cable TV.

In its complaint, GMA maintained that "in order to arrest or destroy the 
upswing performance and top position of plaintiff GMA in the television 
industry, defendant cable companies, Skycable, Home Cable and Pilipino 
Cable engaged in unfair competition and/or unfair trade practices with 
defendant ABS-CBN against plaintiff GMA through corporate combinations, 
devices, and machinations resulting in injury and damage to the business 
and network operations of plaintiff GMA." (Tribune)

Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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