AFP yet to receive a proposal from China-linked Dito on building cell towers inside camps

by Warren Ryan Revoltar

Few days after Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) that allowed China-backed Dito Telecommunity Corp. to put up cell towers in the military camps, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) spokesperson Maj. Gen. Edgard Arevalo said Sunday that the AFP has yet to receive a proposal from the telco company on building cell towers in AFP camps, consequently, the number of cell sites to be put up in its camps has yet to be determined as well.

Amid mounting opposition to the deal, Arevalo said that the proposal is still subject to vetting and concurrence by the AFP. He also noted that the MOA, recently signed by Lorenzana, is still subject to situations and limitations, as with any installation in all military sites.

“Therefore, notwithstanding the letter and intent of the MOA, there is a tedious process that is required (as well as) and AFP’s concurrence, as the host will have to be secured first,” Arevalo said.

Some lawmakers and sectors have opposed the move, saying the cell sites could be used by China for espionage. However, according to Defense officials, they shouldn’t be concerned for assessments showed that there is a low risk of it happening. It added that there are ample safeguards to ensure that national security will be protected.

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