Actress Angel Locsin and singer Jimmy Bondoc — who is a known supporter of President Rodrigo Duterte — engaged in a very public word war yesterday after the latter said that he’s looking forward to the closure of the country’s “biggest TV network” ABS-CBN, where he alleged that many artists have been victims of sexual harassment.
The feud started when Bondoc, the vice president of the government-owned Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation, yesterday posted an article from ABS-CBN News on his Facebook account, titled Bong Go not accompanied by family at Senate proclamation.
Bondoc said the article’s angle was malicious and that he is eagerly waiting for ABS-CBN’s demise.
ABS-CBN has frequently been the object of President Duterte’s threats ever since the company allegedly declined to run his campaign ads for the 2016 elections. The president has said that he would not renew their broadcasting franchise once it expires in 2020
Bondoc followed up with another post where he said that he’s excited to see the TV network close down because it was allegedly “a snake pit, where success is based on politics and sexual favors.”
He also alleged that the network has “COUNTLESS VICTIMS, from sexual harassment to plain and simple bullying.”
While Bondoc has his share of supporters, Locsin, one of ABS-CBN’s contract stars, took him to task for what he wrote. She didn’t mention his name in the tweet, but she quoted a line from his hit Let Me Be The One.
She wrote: “Let me be the one to break this news to you so you don’t have to make excuses. The network might not be perfect but for you to be happy about thousands of people losing their jobs is pure evil. Maybe you’re just having a bad day. I will pray for you.”
The star of ABS-CBN’s The General’s Daughter also posted a follow-up tweet, where she asked, “When you became famous, did you experience sexual harassment [in the company]? If yes, I encourage you and all the victims to report this to the police. But generalizing that sexual favor is a prerequisite to success [in the network] is just wrong.”
Locsin didn’t identify Bondoc anywhere in her tweets but he posted screenshots of her tweets on his Facebook account today. Bondoc said that he was not generalizing that everyone has been subjected to sexual harassment in that TV network but “one case of verified harassment is one too many.”
He also said that filing a sexual harassment case is not an option for some people, especially for young artists.
Bondoc made another follow-up Facebook post addressing Locsin once again. He denied that he would be happy if people lost their jobs if the TV network does close down. He said if the network changes owners, there’s a possibility that its employees could be retained.
But Bondoc is far from done. He followed this up with another Facebook post, saying: “I am inviting everyone who once told me about their personal horror stories of experiencing sexual harassment in major networks…those who are under contract or those who went through pressure, ‘sexual harassment in nature.’”
He said he will give them a lawyer if they come forward.