Department of Information and Communication Technology Secretary Ivan John Uy recently told reporters that telecommunications lines should be given the same level of priority as electricity and water in property development.
The DICT also raised the need for an enabling law that includes ICT when designing housing and other property projects amid the pressing need for connectivity and accelerate the shift to digitalization.
This sentiment is shared by Globe Telecom Inc., which recently welcomed the intention of Isabela 6th District Rep. Faustino Dy to refile House Bill 10388 which requires developers to include ICT facilities in their design.
“We are encouraged by Congressman Dy’s move to refile this bill that is crucial in achieving our goal to connect as many households as possible to reliable connectivity. This will benefit our people at a time when internet access has become a lifeline,” Globe president and CEO Ernest Cu said in a recent event.
In addition, Sec. Uy also threw his support behind the measure setting a minimum internet speed for telcos to ensure stable connection among users. “If you are paying your bills right and ISPs are eager to collect payments, it is only right that they provide the quality of service that will commensurate with our payments,” he said.
The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us how dependent our society has become on connectivity and emphasized the many gaps that must be filled as far as that service or utility is concerned. As quality and reliable telecommunication services have truly become as important as electricity and water, it becomes the responsibility of all branches of government and the private sector players to ensure that access is made as affordable and universal as possible.
As the country’s telcos race to improve and upgrade their services, the infrastructure must also be made ready so all Filipinos can avail of those connections. Local government units, urban planners and property developers will need to make their areas of responsibility ready, and if legislation can help, that would be appreciated.*