Poe rejects Duterte adviser’s plan to restrict cell-tower construction


Posted at Jan 24 2019 06:21 PM

MANILA—Limiting the construction of cellphone towers goes against the government's goal to provide better telco services, Senator Grace Poe said Thursday.

Poe made the remark after presidential economic adviser Ramon Jacinto proposed that the government implement a "common tower policy."

"It's just illogical for me to accept that even the telco companies will not be allowed to build their own cell towers if there is already a policy of a shared tower agreement," Poe said.

Jacinto is proposing that the government limit the number of tower builders to two companies because this would make the business more viable. He said he got the idea from American companies.

"They (telco firms) do not want to improve their service, we're the slowest. Why would we trust them to own a tower company?" Jacinto said.

"We cannot allow them again to be in the driver's seat because they have failed the people."

Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) acting Secretary Eliseo Rio rejected Jacinto's proposal, saying it will not be implemented as long as he is in charge.

"As long as I am the acting secretary of the DICT, this will not be implemented," Rio said.

"We should allow more towers to come in."

Rio earlier this month said the DICT has signed agreements with six telco-tower builders to speed up the rollout of new cell sites across the country.