Despite the economic turmoil caused by COVID-19, DITO Telecommunity Corporation recently fulfilled its commitment to the Philippine government of providing internet coverage to 37 percent of the country’s population with a minimum average broadband speed of 27 MBPS.
This was learned from the public hearing conducted by the Senate Committee on Public Services joint with Ways and Means last March 10.
In his speech acknowledging DITO, Senator Bong Go said that the Constitution recognizes the role of communication and information in nation-building and that they play a crucial role in saving lives amid all the calamities that have stricken the country.
DITO is now preparing for full rollout, making information dissemination in our country through telecommunication more efficient and stable. Last March 8, it commenced operations in selected cities and towns in Central Visayas and Davao Region.
Among the measures discussed during the hearing was House Bill No. 7332 which renewed the legislative franchise granted to Mindanao Islamic Telephone Company, now known as DITO Telecommunity Corporation.
Through HB 7332, the extension of DITO’s franchise of 25 years will start after the expiration of its current one in 2023. The new franchise mandates the company to “conform to the ethics of honest enterprise, operate its station/s in a satisfactory manner and comply with Republic Act No. 10639 that makes it mandatory for all telecommunications firms to grant free mobile disaster alerts to government agencies during natural and man-made calamities.”
Senator Go stressed that franchise applicants, such as DITO, assist the government and the people through means of telecommunication since connectivity and access to information is of public importance during these trying times.
“Magmula sa sunog, bagyo, at kahit sa pandemyang ating kinakaharap ngayon, kailangan po na interconnected at well-informed ang mga Pilipino upang makapaghanda ng maayos at makaiwas sa anumang peligro,” Go said.
“Malaki po ang tiwala namin dito sa Senado at ng lahat ng mga Pilipino na makakatulong kayo sa tuloy-tuloy na pag-unlad ng ating bayan,” he added.
The Senator also commended the efforts and sincerity of DITO in improving connectivity in the Philippines.
Meanwhile, alongside DITO, Go reminded managements of the legislative franchise applicants to fulfill their promises to the nation, especially since they are engaged in public service. “Your franchise is not a right but a mere privilege that can be revoked once you violate your undertakings,” reminded Go.