Philippine Telegraph and Telephone Corp. asked the Supreme Court to overturn a decision of the selection committee of the National Telecommunications Commission to disqualify the company from the selection of a new major telecom player.
PT&T filed a petition for certiorari with the Supreme Court assailing the acts of the NTC and the committee in the selection of the third telco that will challenge the duopoly of PLDT Inc. and Globe Telecom.
PT&T said the committee gravely erred when it interpreted the term “regional operations” under the rules and regulations on the selection process under Memorandum Circular No. 09-09-2018 as applicable only to foreign companies. This effectively prevented any domestic corporation from participating in the bidding, it said.
The company alleged that the NTC “gravely abused its discretion” when it refused to certify that PT&T has the required technical capability to participate in the bidding despite the various arguments and evidence showing that it has experience in the provisioning, delivery and operations of telecommunications services for the last ten years on a national scale.
“Moreover, PT&T argued that the NMP selection committee acted capriciously and with evident bias when it prematurely disqualified PT&T from the third telco bidding on the sole ground that it failed to submit a certification of technical capability instead of deferring said submission until the document verification phase of the third telco bidding, as what the NMP selection committee did in favor of the Mislatel Consortium with respect to the latter’s lack of a subsisting Congressional franchise,” PT&T said.
“PT&T’s grievances lie solely with the NTC and NMP selection committee. However, PT&T impleaded the Mislatel Consortium as respondents in its petition because the corporations constituting said consortium are real parties in interest as defined under the rules of court,” the company said.
PT&T said it was hopeful that its petition would be acted upon favorably.
“We hope that the Supreme Court will act swiftly on the petition in view of the transcendental importance of the selection of the new major player in the Philippine telecommunications market,” PT&T said.
PT&T was disqualified from the bidding for a new major player for not submitting the required certification of technical capability from the NTC.
Another bidder, Sear Telecom of former Ilocos Governor Chavit Singson, was also disqualified from the bidding for failure to submit a participation security of P700 million.
The selection committee on Nov. 7 declared the consortium led by Mindanao Islamic Telephone Co. Inc. as the provisional new major player with 456.80 points in commitments.
Mislatel committed to invest P257 billion over a five-year period, with P150 billion committed to its first year of operations.
In terms of Internet speed, the group committed to provide 27 megabits per second (mbps) in its first year, and 55 mbps in five years.
The company plans to cover 84 percent of the population in five years and 34 percent in its first year of operation.