Solons ask third telco Dito: Where are your cell sites?

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    ALLIANCE of Concerned Teachers (ACT) party-list Rep. France Castro wants the House of Representatives to investigate if Dito Telecommunity Corp. is fulfilling the terms and conditions stated in its permit to operate, among which is the establishment of 2,500 cell sites by July this year.

    Castro yesterday urged members of the House of Representatives to summon officials of the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) and the Dito Telecommunity and find out their capacity.

    “Kailangang mag-report ‘yung Dito telco sa Congress kung saan na ba (‘yung cell site nila).

    Pero I don’t think so na magagawa na nila ‘yung 2,500 na mga cell site. Ito dapat maimbestigahan ito ng Congress. Iyong talagang seryoso ba ito, may kakayahan ba ito?

    (Dito has to report here in Congress where their cell sites are. I don’t think they can establish 2,500 cell sites. Congress has to investigate this to find out if this is serious. Do they have the capability?),” she said as she vowed to file a resolution to make the move official.

    Castro said that based on information she had gathered, the third telco failed to fulfill its earlier promise that one year after it is granted its permission to operate, it would immediately operate 2,500 cell sites, service 37 percent of the nation’s population and give internet speed not lower than 27 mbps.

    “So, kung ganito ang sitwasyon ngayon, papaano pa natin mapagkakatiwalaan iyan na magbibigay ng sinasabing mas mabilis, efficient and reliable na serbisyo sa ating mamamayan? (So, if this is the situation, how can we trust them to give us fast, efficient and reliable service to our people?),” she asked.

    Castro expressed belief Dito Telecommunity was given enough time “and thus there is no reason for it not to fulfill its obligations and the terms stipulated in the contract granted it by the government.”

    Tarlac Rep. Victor Yap, chair of the House committee on information and communications technology, urged the DICT and the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) to ensure that the third telco will fulfill the terms of its contract with the government.

    Yap said the Filipino people who are hoping for cheaper and faster mobile connections are the most affected with each day that the expected start of Dito’s operations is delayed.

    “We want this to happen because apparently, what we expect is a tough competition to lower the rates. Every delay of that, ang natatalo riyan is everyone or the general public (everyone or the general public are the losing end). Mayroon namang napag-agree na timeline, iyon ang sinabi na rules ng NTC, at pumayag naman ‘yung bidder (There’s a timeline, that’s what the NTC rules state and the bidder agreed). So, as much as possible they must comply with that. On their own, they are responsible,” Yap said.