DITO joins Globe, Smart in call for SIM registration extension


Posted at Apr 13 2023 03:11 PM


As subscribers struggle to get valid IDs for SIM registration

MANILA - DITO Telecommunity on Thursday said it was also calling for a 120-day extension of the deadline for SIM registration. 

The Philippines' third major telco said this is "to give way to all subscribers who continue to experience registration constraints."

"Considering that more than 50 percent of nationwide subscribers of all telcos have yet to register, disallowing the extension may result in disenfranchisement of subscribers that may prove detrimental to the current government initiative," the company said.

The Dennis Uy-led telco said that it has so far registered 30 percent of its more than 15 million subscribers. 

But it also noted that many subscribers are complaining that they can't register because they lack the requisite government-issued IDs. 

"This legitimate concern, DITO believes, can be addressed by extending the deadline of registration by giving time to secure acceptable IDs," the telco said. 

Globe and Smart had earlier also called for an extension of the registration deadline citing similar experiences from their subscribers. 

Smart said "lack of IDs remains a challenge to those availing mobile communication services." 

"These individuals without valid IDs are at a higher risk of digital, social and financial exclusion, and marginalization as mobile communications may be their only means of accessing online information, financial services, and other social benefits," Smart said.

PLDT-Smart First Vice President Cathy Yang said extending the deadline will give its remaining 50 percent subscriber base ample time to register. 

"Sa kasalukuyan, 121 days lang ang inilaang panahon para makapag-register ang lahat ng 160 million subscribers sa buong bansa," said Yang.


Besides the lack of acceptable IDs, Globe said telcos have also been dealing with connectivity problems in far flung areas, which it calls missionary sites. 

Globe Group Corporate Communications Officer Yoly Crisanto said the government needs to do more for missionary sites, or areas where it is still not feasible or sustainable for telcos to provide services to. 

"We are saying yes there are areas where connectivity is not as ideal or that there are some areas na talagang there is no connectivity yet. But on the whole, your telcos have already expanded through time and improved the services," Crisanto said. 

She said the government should be helping telcos in aread "where there are no business cases." 

From the very beginning, in the past we have always asked the government to help in areas called missionary sites kasi nga there are no, there is no business case.” 

Globe earlier called for allowing "conditional registration" where individuals can continue using their telecommunication services while they work to obtain a valid ID within a reasonable period. Subscribers can either have a post-verification or update their details once they have the appropriate government ID. 

It also called for the use of government offices as hubs for SIM Registration through volunteers and LGU employees, complemented by ID issuance services.

Globe said only about a third of its 87 million subscribers have registered their SIMs. Most, if not all of the unregistered SIMs are prepaid. 

The Department of Information and Communications Technology said that as of April 11, telcos have registered the following number of SIMs:

DITO – 4,953,908
GLOBE – 28,334,157
SMART – 32,932,269
TOTAL- 66,220,334

SIMs that are not registered until April 26 will be deactivated according to the SIM registration law. 

- With a report from Warren de Guzman, ABS-CBN News


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