Mislatel needs ratified Congress resolution before telco service rollout: DICT

Sherrie Ann Torres, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 07 2019 06:41 PM

MANILA - The Department of Information and Communications Technology needs to wait for the ratified Congress resolution on the franchise of Mislatel before issuing a certification to the third telco consortium, officer-in-charge Eliseo Rio said Thursday. 

The certification will serve as a "go signal" for Mislatel to start the rollout of its 5-year commitment, Rio told Senate reporters. 

A ratified Congress resolution is also needed before the allotted frequencies can be awarded to Mislatel, he said.

“We really have to wait for the approval of Congress before we can give Mislatel their frequencies," Rio said. 

The Senate on Wednesday voted in favor of a resolution affirming the validity of Mislatel's franchise and its transfer to the consortium, also called Mislatel, of businessman Dennis Uy and China Telecom.

Meanwhile the House of Representatives had approved the transfer of controlling interest of Mislatel to the consortium in December. 

Senator Franklin Drilon earlier argued that Mislatel’s franchise was “ipso facto revoked” for failure to operate after it secured its license in the 1990s and for failure to seek Congressional approval when majority interest were transferred to Nicanor Escalante. 

But Senator Grace Poe, who chairs the Senate Committee on Public Services said, the Congress can “cure” Mislatel’s franchise issues with amendments. 

The consortium was confirmed as the third major telecommunications player after rivals Philippine Telegraph and Telephone Corp or PT&T and Sear Telecom were disqualified during the selection process.