Senate OKs DITO Telecommunity’s 25-Year Franchise On Final Reading

The Senate approved DITO Telecommunity’s 25-year franchise on the third and final reading.

The Senate approved on Wednesday the 25-year franchise renewal of China-backed DITO Telecommunity on the third and final reading.

DITO Telecommunity

In a report on GMA News Online, the Senate approved on third reading the measure seeking to renew the franchise of Mindanao Islamic Telephone Co. Inc. (now known as the DITO Telecommunity Corporation) for another 25 years.

With 17 affirmative votes, two negative votes, and one abstain, the chamber approved House Bill 7332 renewing the franchise of DITO Telecommunity to “construct, establish, install, maintain and operate wire and/or wireless telecommunications system in the Philippines.”

Senators Francis Pangilinan and Risa Hontiveros voted against the approval of the said bill.

DITO Telecommunity’s original franchise under Mindanao Islamic Telephone Co. was set to expire in April 2023. The measure required it to renew its franchise three years after its next expiration.

READ ALSO: DITO Telecommunity Targets Fixed Broadband In Next 2 Years, Profitability In 5 Years

GMA News Online also reported that Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon had introduced an amendment to the measure requiring DITO Telecommunity to make a full report to the President and Congress any form of disclosure of any information or data, assistance, support or cooperation made to a foreign government, its instrumentalities or agents.

Failure to make such disclosure shall be a ground for the revocation of the franchise,” Senator Drilon’s amendment added.

Senator Hontiveros also introduced amendments in the measure so that the assignment of frequencies to DITO Telecommunity would be subject to review, and that the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) would be authorized to allocate redundant frequencies held by the company.

Also, Senator Hontiveros’ amendment mandated DITO Telecommunity to submit regular security audits of its network and facilities to the Congress of the Philippines as part of its reportorial requirements.

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