In the Philippines, the country’s largest television network has been forced off air after congressional allies of President Rodrigo Duterte refused to renew its 25-year contract. ABS-CBN has done groundbreaking reporting on Duterte’s brutal “war on drugs” — that’s killed thousands of people in the Philippines — and is the first major broadcaster to shut down as part of Duterte’s ongoing attacks on news outlets that are critical of his government. This is longtime news anchor Noli de Castro, signing off for the last time Tuesday night.
Noli de Castro: “Fellowmen and family, we have been together for many decades. We owe you a debt of gratitude for accepting us into your homes every night. We have become a big part of your lives. We were there with you in times of calamities and hardship. It is an honor for us to have served as the bearers of stories and your watchdog of those in power. It is also an honor to have served you, our fellow countrymen. Although our franchise was not renewed and we were ordered to stop broadcasting, we promise you that we will not keep silent in the face of this attack on our democracy and on freedom of the press.”