Dito allays fears of Chinese spying: ‘We are a Filipino company’
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines’ third telco Dito Telecommunity on Tuesday dismissed fears of possible Chinese espionage, stressing that it is a company run by Filipinos.
“First point, we are a Filipino company. It is run by Filipinos and the officers are Filipinos. The employees are Filipinos,” Dito’s chief administrative officer Adel Tamano said in an online Palace briefing.
“It is a Filipino country and therefore, we will never allow any espionage or anything that will be negative to our national security to happen to our operations,” he added.
Tamano also assured that its cybersecurity plan is already in place to protect its consumers from possible security problems.
The Senate is eyeing a face-to-face executive session to discuss national security concerns involving the China-backed telco, which is seeking a franchise from Congress.
Earlier, concerns were raised over the country’s defense department’s deal with Dito that would allow the company to build cell sites inside Philippine military camps.
Dito is a consortium of Davao businessman Dennis Uy’s, a close ally of President Rodrigo Duterte, Udenna Corporation and its subsidiary Chelsea Logistics Corporation, and Chinese state-owned China Telecommunications Corporation.
Despite its franchise renewal hearing being deferred, Tamano expressed confidence that Congress would grant them a franchise.
“We are quite confident that Congress will see the wisdom of granting us a franchise extension before our commercial launch,” Tamano said.
“I believe it will be most fair for Filipinos, especially the Filipino consumers, who will buy our shares and will be investing in our service to be assured that our franchise will continue and that our business will be viable since it is based on that franchise,” he went on.
Dito is targeting to launch commercially by March next year. [ac]
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