7 TV Patrol Anchors and Reporters Who Pulled Controversial Exits
ABS-CBN's flagship newscast, TV Patrol, remains the longest-running Filipino language prime-time newscast in the Philippines. It has been delivering news, issues, and current events from the Philippines and around the world since it first aired in 1987.
In those years, TV Patrol viewers have seen reporters and anchors come and go. And among those who left TV Patrol, there were those who figured in the news themselves because of their controversial exits. Who were they? PEP.ph gives details.
Seasoned GMA-7 broadcaster Mel Tiangco was one of the original anchors of TV Patrol. She also hosted with Jay Sonza the chat show Mel and Jay that began airing in 1989.
In 1995, Mel was suspended "without pay" by ABS-CBN from her two shows for endorsing a detergent brand. Allegedly, ABS-CBN had a circular stipulating that its news and current affairs talents were not allowed to appear in commercials and advertisements. Mel chose to transfer to GMA-7 in 1996. Her move prompted ABS-CBN to file a case against her, citing a contract clause that prevented talents from working in a competing network for one year after leaving the Kapamilya network.
Amid the legal battle, Mel went on as anchor of TV Patrol's rival program, 24 Oras, and host of the drama anthology Magpakailanman. In 2011, the Supreme Court dismissed ABS-CBN's case against Mel. In 2013, Mel said in an interview that her battle with ABS-CBN had been the most painful part of her life. "Dini-describe ko nga nun na, feeling ko, para akong ipis nun. Alam niyo naman kung paano ba patayin ang ipis? Di ba, tinatapakan, tapos idiin pa para mapisa nang husto? Ganun ang feeling ko nun."
Noli de Castro
Noli de Castro was another TV Patrol original. He became the sole anchor of TV Patrol after Mel's exit in 1996. In 2001, he left the show to run for the senate. He won, and later became the vice president of the Philippines in 2004. When his term as vice president ended in 2010, Noli returned to anchoring TV Patrol with Korina Sanchez. Eleven years later, in 2021, Noli left the program again to run again for the senate. But days after filing his certificate of candidacy, Noli announced his withdrawal from the senate race. There are talks he may not return to TV Patrol.
Korina Sanchez first joined TV Patrol in 1995, replacing Mel Tiangco. Her stint in the news program, however, was intermittent. In 1996, Korina quit the program to focus on her solo show, Balitang K, which served as a pre-programming to TV Patrol. When Balitang K was canceled in 2001, Korina returned to anchoring TV Patrol with Henry Omaga Diaz and Aljo Bendijo, and later, Julius Babao. In 2004, Korina left TV Patrol when the show underwent a reformat. In the same year, she hosted her own magazine show, Rated K, and later anchored together with Julius Babao and Karen Davila the late-night newscast Bandila, which premiered in 2006.
In 2010, ABS-CBN again reformatted TV Patrol. Korina was pulled out of Bandila and returned to TV Patrol to join Ted Failon and the comebacking Noli de Castro. In November 2013, Korina made a remark in her defunct radio show about a "blonde reporter ng CNN" whose reports were "mali-mali." Korina's comment drew flak from netizens who believed she was referring to Anderson Cooper and took his side, claiming the CNN reporter saw for himself the devastation in Tacloban wrought by super typhoon Yolanda. Cooper reportedly urged Korina to visit Ormoc, Tacloban, to see for herself the calamity over there.
When she did not show up in the November 15 and 18 episodes of TV Patrol and in her radio program Rated Korina, rumors floated that the network had suspended Korina. A source told PEP.ph that Korina was not exactly suspended but "pinagbakasyon lamang."
On November 19, Korina was back in Rated Korina. Through a phone patch, Korina clarified she's been doing the rounds in Western Visayas with her team for her magazine program's special report on the conditions of the people affected by the storm. Korina would eventually resume her anchor duties on TV Patrol.
In December 2014, Korina faced another issue for a remark she made during a TV Patrol newscast about Typhoon Ruby hitting both the Philippines and Japan. She commented to co-anchor Noli de Castro, "Puwede bang sa kanila na lang lahat," pertaining to Japan. Noli replied, "Huwag naman."
Weeks later, Korina stopped appearing on TV Patrol. In 2015, a report from a gossip blog came out claiming she was fired from TV Patrol. In April 2015, Korina answered the report, saying she actually filed a leave of absence from January to March 2015 to finish her master's degree in journalism. Eventually, Korina no longer returned to TV Patrol when her husband, Mar Roxas, ran for president in the 2016 elections.
Ted Failon first joined TV Patrol in 2004, when the show was reformatted to TV Patrol World. His co-anchors were Karen Davila and Julius Babao. Ted became a permanent fixture in the newscast until 2020. He decided to leave ABS-CBN on August 31, including his radio program Failon Ngayon Sa Radyo. ABS-CBN said in a statement that the shutdown of the network's radio broadcast operations was the primary reason for Ted's move to leave the network. On September 11, 2020, Ted inked a contract with News5 for a show on Radyo Singko, the radio arm of TV5. DJ Chacha, Ted's co-host in his defunct ABS-CBN radio show, joined him on Radyo Singko. Ted and DJ Chacha currently host their radio show, Ted Failon and DJ Chacha sa Radyo Singko.
Kim Atienza, also known as Kuya Kim in ABS-CBN, was the weatherman of TV Patrol from year 2006 when he replaced the resident weatherman, Ernie Baron, who succumbed to a heart attack. Kuya Kim would cap his daily weather report with interesting trivia about the animal world. He also hosted the program Matanglawin and would join as well the variety program It's Showtime. In September 2021, PEP.ph's Cabinet Files hinted at Kuya Kim leaving ABS-CBN to transfer to GMA-7 in the coming weeks. The report was later confirmed when Kuya Kim was spotted shooting inside the premises of GMA-7. On October 1, Kuya Kim formally said his goodbyes to ABS-CBN and did his last weather report on TV Patrol. On October 4, GMA-7 welcomed Kuya Kim through a feature in 24 Oras. He started his stint in the Kapuso flagship newscast on October 11.
Pinky Webb became the anchor of TV Patrol's weekend edition in 2011 with Alvin Elchico. Aside from TV Patrol Weekend, Pinky also hosted Umagang Kay Ganda. In 2016, Pinky resigned from ABS-CBN News to transfer to CNN Philippines. She eventually became the host of CNN Philippines' daily program The Source and its Filipino newscast, Balitaan.
Atom Araullo started his news career in 2005, doing field reports for newscast programs TV Patrol and Bandila. Atom sealed his reputation as an intrepid reporter when he braved the wrath of typhoon Yolanda in Tacloban for Umagang Kay Ganda, which also aired on TV Patrol. Atom reported on cam soaking wet and trying to keep his balance against the strong wind. Another viral moment of Atom on TV Patrol was when he was caught on cam fixing himself up before making his report. It got the attention of netizens crushing on him, appreciating his good looks.
In August 2016, Atom resigned as an ABS-CBN News reporter but remained an on-cam talent in his shows Umagang Kay Ganda and Red Alert. This would mean that he would stop appearing in TV Patrol and other news programs of the network. In a statement by ABS-CBN News and Current Affairs Ging Reyes, Atom wanted to "pursue other endeavors that would also help him grow as a journalist and as a host."
In September 2017, Atom announced in ABS-CBN's morning program, Umagang Kay Ganda, that he was leaving the network. There followed strong buzz that Atom would be transferring to rival network, GMA-7. After all, he started his career with the Kapuso network via the magazine show 5 & Up.
On September 21, Atom was officially welcomed as the new Kapuso in its prime-time newscast 24 Oras. The inside information then was that Atom's transfer had something to do with his desire to go beyond anchor work and on-cam reporting, so he could do more documentaries. GMA-7 granted his wishes.
Since then, Atom has been doing documentaries for i-Witness and for his own monthly show, The Atom Araullo Specials. Atom would also pinch-hit for Mike Enriquez as an anchor in 24 Oras during the enhanced community quarantine.