CAGAYAN de Oro City Second District Representative Rufus Rodriguez has urged telecommunication companies Globe and Smart to reduce rates for calls and text messages amid the fight against the coronavirus disease (Covid-19).

Rodriguez said the reduction should also apply to data and broadband internet use.

"Reduce rates nationally. No response from them yet," Rodriguez said Monday, March 23.

The Kagay-anon lawmaker also urged other telecommunications companies to reduce fees said aside from Globe and PLDT-Smart.

Rodriguez said because of the quarantine imposed by the different local government units, people are forced to work from and stay home to communicate with the outside world via mobile phones and online platforms.

"That is really the social distancing means of communication now, with the movement of people being restricted to prevent this deadly coronavirus disease from spreading," Rodriguez said.

He said the larger volume of calls and texts, including the increased data and broadband internet use arising from the community quarantine, should compensate for the reduction rates.

Rodriguez suggested that the rate reduction should last until 30 days.

He said at the end of the 30-day period, by and large, the profits of these companies would not be affected due to the expected significant increase in calls and text messages, and data and broadband internet usage.

He said the rate reduction should be part of the telcos' "extra corporate social responsibilities at this time of public health emergency."