Third telco player DITO Telecommunity clarified that the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) will get monetary, not just in-kind, compensation in exchange for leasing spaces in military camps to install cell towers.
The statement came after AFP Spokesperson MGen. Edgard Arevalo earlier said that DITO would be compensating the AFP in kind by providing training and upgrading the military’s technological capability.
“There were some claims that DITO will not pay for anything. Actually, if you take a look at the MOA, we are very clear as to what the rates are. We will be paying actual pesos to the AFP for rent and security,” said DITO Chief Administrative Officer Adel Tamano.
As to why there’s a conflicting statement from AFP, DITO Chief Technology Officer Rodolfo Santiago explained that it was due to the deal being amended several times before Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana signed it.
AFP also has agreements with giant telco Globe Telecom and PLDT, Inc.’s Smart Communications that allow them to install cell sites in military camps. Arevalo bared there are 62 of the 3,000 Globe cell sites and 31 of the 9,700 Smart cell sites present in camps.
Despite DITO’s assurance of compensating the AFP, lawmakers, IT experts, and various groups remain worried about letting the China-backed telco enter military camps due to national security concerns.