MANILA, Philippines – Current and former UAAP athletes have voiced their support for press freedom with custom jerseys bearing their messages through ABS-CBN Sports social media accounts.
Taking a page out of the NBA’s social justice campaign playbook, the embattled media outlet asked players to choose from a set of relevant phrases like “Never again,” “Malayang midya” (free press), and “Hindi kami mananahimik” (We will not be silent).
Jia Morado, for press freedom pic.twitter.com/i5Y7tJJ8oY— ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) July 11, 2020
Jack Animam, for press freedom pic.twitter.com/PDFoGGlxWM— ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) July 11, 2020
Kobe Paras, for press freedom pic.twitter.com/pzVQqT7WlT— ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) July 11, 2020
Some players who got jersey posts like volleyball superstar Alyssa Valdez also posted their own messages of support.
— Alyssa Valdez (@AlyssaValdez2) July 10, 2020
Maraming salamat sa serbisyo. Hindi pa tapos ang laban. Nandito kami para kayo’y samahan. pic.twitter.com/dFb1TCduBZ
Alyssa Valdez, for press freedom pic.twitter.com/8NVbfYiz1P— ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) July 11, 2020
The denial of ABS-CBN’s franchise is not just an attack on press freedom but also a denial of the people’s right to information.— Ayel Estrañero (@ayelestranero__) July 11, 2020
This is not just the fight of ABS-CBN but the fight of every Filipino. https://t.co/2BcrfQhSQ7
Laban lang. #DefendPressFreedom— Diego Dario (@Diego5Dario) July 10, 2020
ABS-CBN Sports’ social media team also confirmed that former Ateneo stars Thirdy Ravena and Dzi Gervacio provided their own messages for their jerseys.
Thirdy Ravena, for press freedom pic.twitter.com/NZkhoDAkXj— ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) July 11, 2020
Dzi Gervacio, for press freedom pic.twitter.com/Z16lvr7K3E— ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) July 11, 2020
The UAAP is just one of many leagues left homeless after Congress voted to keep ABS-CBN off the air.
Coincidentally, its five-year broadcast contract with the media giant expired on May 31 after Season 82 was prematurely terminated due to the pandemic. Around this time, the government was at the height of its priority to tackle ABS-CBN’s franchise renewal.
In partnership with ABS-CBN since 2000, the league has yet to reveal any details regarding discussions, if any, with other potential broadcast network partners. – Rappler.com