MANILA - NOW Telecom does not have a P2.6 billion debt, the company insisted Thursday, following reports that the government is collecting its unpaid dues.
"NOW Telecom Company would like to clarify that the P2.6B debt being orchestrated for circulation against the Company is malicious and erroneous," it said in a statement.
The National Telecommunications Commission, through the Office of the Solicitor General, earlier asked the Supreme Court to resolve NOW’s alleged liabilities stemming from unpaid Supervision and Regulation Fees (SRF) and Spectrum User Fees (SUF) as well as accumulated fines and penalties.
NOW however said the NTC cannot impose penalties against the company.
"From the contested amount of P126M, NTC cannot impose penalties and surcharges thereon against the Company considering that, to date, there is no final amount of SRF which is due and demandable," it said.
"The repeated inclusion of “penalties” in NTC’s letter-assessments is patently baseless and malicious meant to unduly inflate the amount supposedly due from NOW Telecom," it added.
The company said it was “being singled out for the abhorrent purpose of tarnishing its good name and reputation.”
NOW Telecom said it is faithfully complying with its obligations to pay annual SRF exclusive of the SRF issue pending before the Supreme Court.
Last year NOW Telecom billed itself as the country’s “fourth telco” after getting provisional authority from the NTC to install, operate and maintain a mobile telecommunications system.
Prior to this, it expressed intent to join the search for the third telco slot but held off on submitting documents after questioning the selection process.