Johnny Manahan Calls on Congress to Reissue ABS-CBN Franchise


A year before he marks half a century in the entertainment industry, legendary director Johnny Manahan pens an open letter to Congress, calling for the reissue of the ABS-CBN franchise. 

Here is his plea.

An open letter to the gentlemen of Congress:

I'm Johnny Manahan. Next year will be my 50th year in the Entertainment Industry. In the 1960’s i attended the dedication of the ABS studios at the Bohol Ave address and started my career as a gofer, designer, music coordinator, crane operator, floor director and finally as a Director in 1970.

With Martial Law in 1973, i found myself bouncing around, for 16 years, as an indie freelancer at Channels 2,4,5,7,11, and 13. 

In 1986 during the EDSA Revolt, i climbed the walls, along with Jim Paredes and Johnny Delgado, to “liberate” the ABS compound from the military. And when Freddie Garcia (FMG) asked me to transfer two of the highest rating shows i had at Channel 13 to restart an ABS re-launch, this started my 34 year-journey with the nascent ABS Corp.


I have come to know the Lopez family and the Lopez Organizations all these years, none compares to them when it comes to a progressive, meritorious, compassionate and decent organization. Maybe the Ayala and Gokongwei groups.

Now it seems that a gang of four wants to finish the long run of the ABS corp. With their niggling, petty-fogging, and hair-splitting, they have unearthed technicalities that only a Talmudic scholar or medieval philosopher would appreciate.

ABS is not perfect. No one said it was. It is open to criticism and is willing to correct mistakes and take concrete steps to improve itself.

So let us not throw away the baby along with the bathwater!!!

And so it was right to bring to light the true conditions of the workplace and the pittance received by technical crews and artists working 22 to 24hr days. You got that right Cong. Mike! I hope you, Cong. Boying and your fellow lawmakers in the commitee and in the House as a whole appreciate the ABS record of Entertainment and Public Service and find it in your hearts to grant a reissue of the ABS franchise. Millions of people and thousands of employers depend on it.

The Marcoses stole ABS from the Lopez family in 1973! Please do not steal it again!!!

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