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'Cannot Be Reached' Update: Tower Permits Moving Faster, Duterte Told

Process down to 16 days from 241.
by Joel Guinto
Aug 10, 2020
Photo/s: Agence France-Presse

Tower-building permits now take 16 days to process, from 241 days, as local governments responded to President Rodrigo Duterte's call to resolve bureaucratic bottlenecks that hamper the upgrade of telecommunications services.

Interior Secretary Eduardo Ano told the President that based on his inventory, only 428 tower building permits are pending after 1,502 were approved by 80 local government units (55 provinces and 25 cities). The 16-day process yielded 8 permits from 35 documentary requirements while the 241-day process had 19 permits and 86 documents.

"A delay of 200 days is totally unacceptable to me," the President said in a televised Cabinet meeting. Globe CEO Ernest Cu told Duterte on July 31 that the slow grant of permits was hobbling network upgrades.

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During his State of the Nation Address on July 27, the President asked Globe and Smart to improve their services. He said he had experienced hearing "cannot be reached" on his mobile just like ordinary subscribers.

"Kindly improve the services before December. I want to call Jesus Christ in Bethlehem. Better have that line cleared," he said.

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