MTRCB junks SMNI appeal, stands by suspension of 2 shows

Gaby Baizas

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MTRCB junks SMNI appeal, stands by suspension of 2 shows

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MTRCB extends the suspension period of the SMNI shows to 28 days, and says the network’s appeal is ‘unconvincing and lacking persuasiveness’

MANILA, Philippines – The Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB) junked an appeal from the Apollo Quiboloy-owned Sonshine Media Network International (SMNI), upholding its decision to suspend two of the network’s shows, the government agency said, Friday, January 26.

Back in December, the MTRCB imposed a 14-day preventive suspension on the SMNI shows Gikan sa Masa, Para sa Masa and Laban Kasama ang Bayan.

The former was flagged after former president Rodrigo Duterte threatened ACT Teachers Representative France Castro on the show, while the latter was suspended after hosts Jeffrey “Ka Eric” Celiz and Lorraine Badoy allegedly reported without verification on House Speaker Martin Romualdez’s travel spending.

MTRCB then conducted a comprehensive review of the aforementioned cases, and “unanimously decided” to suspend the programs. The board found that the two shows had violated “established guidelines and standards set by Presidential Decree No. 1986 and its Implementing Rules and Regulations governing broadcasting content.”

On Thursday, January 11, SMNI appealed the board’s decision to suspend the two shows. MTRCB found SMNI’s assertions in its motions for reconsideration “unconvincing and lacking persuasiveness,” and consequently denied the appeal. MTRCB also moved to extend the shows’ suspension period to 28 days.

In a press release, MTRCB Chairperson Lala Sotto stressed the board’s dedication to “protect viewers from inappropriate content” and to “enforce accountability in media content regulation.”

The MTRCB decision comes after the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) ordered SMNI on Tuesday, January 23 to cease its radio and television operations, following findings by the NTC that SMNI allegedly failed to “strictly comply” with an initial 30-day suspension imposed in December. –

1 comment

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  1. ET

    I appreciate this action of the MTRCB. It found SMNI’s assertions in its motions for reconsideration “unconvincing and lacking persuasiveness.” Did the power of the appointed Son of God fail this time?

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Gaby Baizas

Gaby Baizas is a digital forensics researcher at Rappler. She first joined Rappler straight out of college as a digital communications specialist. She hopes people learn to read past headlines the same way she hopes punk never dies.