ACT Teachers Partylist Rep. France Castro asked the House of Representatives to investigate Dito Telecommunity, the third major telecom player in the country, for its alleged failure to fulfill its promises under its franchise.
Castro said Dito should be meted a penalty corresponding to its franchise. “Nag- oppose kami diyan sa Dito telco na ‘yan dahil before pa aprubahan ang another 25 years franchise niyan, wala namang natupad sa mga promise nito,” said Castro. “At isa pa, controlled ito ng China Telecom na maaaring threat sa national security.”
Castro sought for a congressional probe after his office learned of Dito’s alleged broken promises.
Dito earlier committed to provide services to 37% of the population in its first year of operation. Castro said, however, that the third telco had even covered 37 percent of its targeted customers as it used population data in 2015 and not in 2021, when nine million residents were added in the country.
Dito also promised to maintain an average minimum internet speed of 27 MBPS. Castro said an independent test in Manila showed it only had 3 mbps upload and 4 mbps download speeds.
Castro said Congress should also confirm reports that Dito only set up 1,600 cell towers in the country based on the technical audit of the National Telecommunications Commission in January 2021, below its pledge to construct 2,500 cell towers.
He said while Dito was granted franchise to provide services to the underprivileged and marginalized sectors of society, reports showed the third telco is anti-poor because it rolled out in highly urbanized cities in Metro Manila, Visayas and Mindanao. Castro said to avail of Dito’s services, the poor have to buy 4G handsets.
Castro said Dito would have been a big help, especially to distance learners, if it had fulfilled its promises.