Studio 23 unveils 2 Tagalog news programs

Posted at 03/12/11 8:45 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Following the successful launch of its primetime newscast “iba-BALITA” with Anthony Taberna, Studio 23 unveiled a noontime newscast and a series of news advisories to keep Kabarkada viewers fresh updates throughout the day.

Veteran broadcast journalists Tony Velasquez and Lynda Jumilla bring with them more than 20 years of newsgathering experience as the anchors of the dynamic Tagalog newscast “iba-BALITA Ngayon” that will air weekdays at 11:30 a.m.

“I'm grateful for this opportunity to be of service to another audience,” said Velasquez. “Iba-BALITA Ngayon’ can offer viewers fresh updates on running stories, breaking news reports, and insightful analysis and commentary through live interviews with newsmakers and analysts. The extensive reach of our broadcast journalists and our regional and international bureaus will give the most comprehensive coverage of the day's events.”

“Today, people demand for news and information anytime of the day. People no longer have to wait until the evening to find out what's happening around them. As early as possible, they would like to know what are about to happen for the rest of the day,” said Jumilla, who looks forward to her tandem with Velasquez, a long-time colleague.

Velasquez has produced special reports for ABS-CBN’s “Krusada” and anchors ANC’s primetime newscast “The Rundown” and the information technology show “Future Perfect.”

Apart from covering major political beats previously as a reporter, Velasquez did special assignments like covering the Asian tsunami disaster in 2004. He and his cameraman were the only Filipino news team on the ground and at one point, got exclusive video which a wire agency bought from ABS-CBN.

Like Velasquez, Jumilla has developed extensive sources in the government as she had covered the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of government.

It was Jumilla who got an exclusive on the return of former Agriculture secretary Cito Lorenzo, who was linked to the fertilizer fund scam being investigated by the Senate.

“I hope to see the closure of the fertilizer fund scam within my lifetime—to give justice to our long suffering farmers,” said Jumilla.

Meanwhile, broadcast journalist TJ Manotoc returns to Studio 23 as the anchor of “Bilis Balita” News Advisories everyday at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. On primetime, “Bilis Balita” airs every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. It will air three times within PBA games every Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday nights.

Manotoc feels good to be called up "off the bench" and fill in a spot for Studio 23’s news advisories. He previously anchored Studio 23’s English news program “News Central” for three years and now looks forward to anchoring the news advisories in Filipino.

”What makes Bilis Balita different is it gives our loyal viewers the right amount and balance of news they need at a timely pace between noontime and primetime, especially in between PBA games,” he said. “Giving viewers a mini-newscast like ‘Bilis Balita’ will keep them informed without having to leave the channel and risk missing the resumption of action for the next game.”

Aside from the new newscasts, Studio 23 is airing the new seasons of “The Amazing Race: Unfinished Business” every Tuesday at 9:30 p.m.; “Desperate Housewives” every Thursday at 10:30 p.m.; and “Grey’s Anatomy” every Thursday at 11:30 p.m.