Just read this article from the Philippine Daily Inquirer– “AMID CASE OF MISSING ‘LOAD’
NTC: Telcos fought rules to protect consumers“.
My attention is being catched by the article hence i have been actively advocating for the stoppage of the disappearance of prepaid card credits (“load theft“) from the subscribers’ cellphone accounts. I had once filed a complaint against Smart Communications in 2007. Read my previous post: “Gikawatan ko’g Smart Load“.
As if they’re trying to prove they’re not remiss of their job, an official of the National Telecommunication Commission told the joint Senate Committee on Public Service and Trade and Commerce that as early as year 2000, NTC could have been prevented “Load Theft” and imposed stiffer penalties against erring telcos to protect consumers.
But the telcos blocked the implementation of the NTC Memorandum Circular No. 13-06-2000 and got an injuction order from the court. The MC remains unimplemented.
Here are some of the salient features of the NTC Memorandum Circular No. 13-06-2000:
- Customers of the prepaid SIM cards should be properly identified by submitting a valid ID during purchase
- SIM cards should be valid at least for 2 years from the date of its first use
- Users shall have 45 days, but not beyond 2 years and 45 days, to replenish the SIM card
- Users shall be informed of their remaining credit before the start of every call and the information shall be free of charge
- All telcos shall maintain call details of all pre-paid SIM card customers
- Reduced call rate charging–from 1-minute every pulse to 6-seconds every pulse
- The rates per minute shall be divided by 10
QUOTES @ the Senate joint hearing:
Senator Joker Arroyo on the Court order
“You handcuffed the NTC … which makes the regulations.”
Senator Richard Gordon on NTC
“What is the NTC doing to protect the consumers against promos that eat up their cellphone load without their knowledge? It appears that the NTC is not able to regulate the services of the telcos.”
Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile on NTC
“may be overhauled” and its “powers may be strengthened.”
Senator Mar Roxas on the telcos
“What you don’t want is for Congress to start writing up your Operations Manual and imposing limits, including the number of minutes for lunch breaks or your pensions. We are resonating the public’s complaint and if you stonewall these, we will take the necessary steps.”
Senator Bong Revilla on the telcos
“I would like to remind them that since a franchise is merely a privilege granted by the government through Congress, it would be tantamount to a gross violation of their franchise if such claims be proven true.”
NTC Commissioner Ruel Canobas on the injunction order
“We’ve been fighting the telcos with the MC for years. Hopefully now the case would be discussed.”
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