Quiboloy network, Aliw Broadcasting bag other ABS-CBN frequencies

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, January 26) — Two other broadcasting companies, including one led by Pastor Apollo Quiboloy, have been granted other frequencies previously owned by ABS-CBN, the National Telecommunications Commission confirmed Wednesday.

The NTC said in statements sent to the media that it granted Aliw Broadcasting Corp. and Swara Sug Media Corp. — also known as Sonshine Media Network International (SMNI) — provisional authority to “install, operate and maintain” digital television broadcasting systems in Metro Manila.

Aliw Broadcasting, the operator of radio station DWIZ, was founded by the late Ambassador Antonio Cabangon Chua. His son Edgard Cabangon Chua is the chairman of Aliw Broadcasting, and Nine Media Corporation which operates CNN Philippines.

Orders promulgated on Jan. 5 granted such authority for Aliw using Channel 23 and for SMNI using Channel 43.

The regulator noted Aliw was the second applicant for digital TV broadcasting authority in the capital region, having filed its application on July 30, 2007. SMNI came next —filing for provisional authority on Oct. 16 the same year.

Both broadcast firms secured the authority “after the determination” of their legal, technical, and financial qualification, said the NTC.

The commission added that it sought policy guidance from the Department of Information and Communications Technology, legal opinion from the Department of Justice, and the concurrence of the Office of the President-Office of the Executive Secretary.

The Commission gave the same reassurance when it announced the awarding of Channel 16 to Advanced Media Broadcasting System, which is owned by billionaire and former senator Manny Villar. The company applied for digital TV broadcasting authority in October 2006, the NTC said.

ABS-CBN failed to secure a fresh 25-year franchise in July 2020 after a House panel denied its application. It has since strengthened its presence in digital platforms and aired some shows on free TV at the A2Z channel, which was born out of a broadcast deal with religious leader and congressman Eddie Villanueva’s Zoe Broadcasting Network.