Misortel to take action vs telcos for wire damages

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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

THE Provincial Government-owned Misamis Oriental Telephone System (Misortel) is taking appropriate actions against two giant telecommunications companies for the damages of its infrastructure.

Misortel overseer Fernando Vincent Dy Jr. said the company’s decision to take action stemmed from the telecom firms’ ongoing expansion and the telephone cable wires theft that affected around 2,000 Misortel subscribers in the province and city.

Dy said the Misortel fiber optic cables located in Tagoloan and Villanueva towns in Misamis Oriental and in Barangay Cugman, this city, were damaged due to an excavation work by a telecom provider’s contractor.

There was an instance where damaged cables in Villanueva were not reported, and worse, there was even an attempt to cover up the incident, he said.

Dy noted that the telecom company involved couldn't deny since Misortel was able to detect it using its gadgets.

“Our service in the affected areas was adversely affected by these series of incidents,” Dy said.

He said Misortel has already met with the contractor of the telecom company and they promised to restore the damaged cables.

Dy said they also caught linemen of a contractor of another telecom firm cutting Misortel’s cable wires along Pabayo-Chavez streets recently.

He said the contractor’s linemen said they were doing some “cleaning up” of their own cables but when Misortel checked, Misortel’s aerial telephone wires were cut as well.

Dy said the incident happened on Misortel’s “dropping point,” an area where diagnostic and maintenance work is conducted.

“It was our dropping point, what was their point in doing their cleaning up there? They have to explain it,” Dy told this paper in a telephone interview Wednesday afternoon.

Dy said it would be hard for a telecom lineman to cut a telephone wire by mistake since the wires are marked with the company’s name to distinguish it from the others.

He added they have reported the cutting incident to the police.

Dy told Sun*Star Cagayan de Oro they will press charges if the contractor and company involved will not fix the damages of Misortel’s cable wires.

Dy said Misortel has sent formal letters to the telecom companies so they could act on Misortel’s complaints.

He said it’s a matter of “command responsibility” and that the company should know the actions of their contractors.

Meanwhile, Misortel has already identified the suspects behind the theft of its telephone cables recently.

It can be recalled Misortel has recorded five cases of cable wire thefts for the months of September to October this year.

The most recent case was reported Monday morning in Barangay Carmen where more than 50 meters of cable wires were stolen.

“Cases of cable thefts are quite alarming (because) it hampered the communication systems of our subscribers who often find their units disconnected without warning,” Dy said.

Dy said four suspects involved in MisOrtel cable wire theft were arrested by the police. Another Three suspects are still at large.

According to Dy, two of the suspects are employees of a contractor hired by the same company that allegedly damaged some of Misortel’s fiber optic cable lines.

Dy said the suspects are now detained at the city jail in barangay Lumbia.

He said the estimated loss of Misortel due to the cable theft is about P2 million, including the restoration cost.

“We would like to ask for their (subscribers) consideration brought about by these incidents,” Dy said.
“Rest assured that Misortel is doing its best to restore order,” he added.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on December 19, 2013.

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