Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB) chairperson Rachel Areñas has given her side on the issue between the Philippine National Police (PNP) and ABS-CBN’s primetime TV series “FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano.”
In a recent interview on DZMM, Areñas reiterated the agency — which is responsible for the classification and review of television programs, movies and home videos – doesn’t have the right to stop the airing of the program due to supposed “bad portrayal” of cops.
“Wala po sa poder namin ‘yan,” she explained. “Sunod-sunod naman po ‘yung ano namin, since 2016 pa ang dialogue namin with them.”
(“The matter is not in our rights,” she explained. “MTRCB and the production team (of ‘Ang Probinsyano’ have a consistent dialogue since 2016.”)
Areñas also noted MTRCB doesn’t practice censorship.
“We cannot also prohibit negative depictions because we are sort of a bridge on the constitutionally protected freedom of expression, and also the right of the state to regulate,” she added.
PNP Chief Director General Oscar Albayalde lamented last week that “FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano” gives a “bad impression” of police officers. He raised concern over the show promoting the idea of “instant justice” as well as representing the PNP chief as the villain.
When the show host asked Arenas if she sees the same thing, she answered: “Kailangang may redeeming factor o magandang value na napupulot ang mga manonood. Doon sa mga nakikita namin na past episodes, mayroon naman ding natututunan ang mga bata, na the good always prevails.”
(“There has to be a redeeming factor or good values the viewers can get. Based on their past episodes, there are lessons the kids can learn, like the ‘good always prevails.”)
She also stressed “FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano” does not violate the guidelines of MTRCB.
“Actually nagkaroon kami ng conference na nandoon ang ‘Ang Probinsyano’ at ang PNP. In fact, ang suggestion, ang napag-usapan, ‘bakit hindi kayo kumuha ng adviser o consultant from PNP para alam pati ang uniform na isusuot, kung ano ba ang tama?’ (Kunyari) ‘Tama ba ‘yung star na nasa uniform?’ Kasi that’s one of their concerns also,” she pointed out.
(“Actually, the (team behind) ‘Ang Probinsyano’ and the PNP had a conference with us. In fact, one of the suggestions is ‘Why don’t you get an adviser or consultant from PNP so they will know the right thing to do?’ For example, in terms of the uniform, the stars should be in its right place. That’s one of their concerns also.”)
A recent memorandum from the PNP stated that all units, offices, and personnel of PNP are to “immediately refrain from assisting, to withdraw their support to the production of the said teleserye in terms of PNP resources like patrol cars, firearms, personnel, venues, and other items and gadgets being used in the teleserye.”
Also part of the memo was the talk participated in by the Police Community Relations Group (PCRG), Movie Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB), and the production of “FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano” Oct. 17 and 23, 2018, wherein the latter promised “to make the necessary corrections on the issues raised by the PNP in a week’s time.”
Areñas stated there will be another meeting between the production team, the PNP and the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), hopefully this week.
Earlier, ABS-CBN released a statement stating that the characters, places, and incidents in the program are purely fictitious as stated in the disclaimer aired at the start of the show every night.
“FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano” lead star Coco Martin echoed the statement while also writing “pasensya na po” abou it on social media post.