Bell Tel: No existing co-location agreement in NGCP sites

MANILA, 11th May 2017: Bell Telecommunications Philippines, Inc. (“Bell Tel”) clarified that it does not have any existing co-location agreement with either the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (“NGCP”) or the National Transmission Corporation (“Transco”) relating to installation of telecommunication structures in any of the NGCP-controlled sites. Transco is the National Transmission Corp., which owns the country’s power grid while NGCP is Transco’s private concessionaire.

“Bell Tel does not have any existing assets in any NGCP-controlled location as there is no existing co-location agreement with NGCP nor Transco,” said Bell Tel co-General Manager Ramon Aesquivel. Bell Tel is one of the subsidiaries of Vega Telecom, Inc., which was jointly acquired last year by Globe Telecoms Inc. (“Globe”) and PLDT Inc. (“PLDT”) from San Miguel Corporation (“SMC”).

Citing a letter to NGCP President Henry Sy, Jr., Transco President Melvin Matibag claimed during a media briefing that he has received reports about “dismantling and deinstallation” of telecommunication facilities supposedly owned by Bell Tel located at NGCP sub-stations, high voltage towers and high voltage poles. Matibag also cited purchase orders, signed by Aesquivel and Bell Tel co-General Manager Aileen Regio, supposedly to implement the said “dismantling and deinstallation”.

Aesquivel stressed, however, that the initial investigation conducted by Bell Tel showed that the purchase orders cited by Matibag were intended for other sites, none of which are NGCP locations.

“Bell Tel has not authorized the dismantling of any telco facility in any NGCP site because Bell Tel does not have existing facilities in those locations to begin with,” Aesquivel emphasized. “”If indeed there is ongoing dismantling of telco facilities within NGCP sites, those are not owned by nor are related to Bell Tel in any way,” he said.

He added that Bell Tel is currently undertaking its own investigation on this matter, including how a Bell Tel purchase order issued to one of its contractors ended up with someone unauthorized or not party to the intended purpose of the purchase order.

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