The swift action of the House of Representatives to grant DITO Telecommunity its 25-year franchise is not the only thing compared to the bitter case of ABS-CBN. Filipino social media users also point out how the government allows the third telco player to hire contractual workers when it’s the same thing that was used as one of the reasons to crucify the media giant.
Under the congressional franchise given to DITO, which is owned by Davao-based businessman Dennis Uy who’s a known friend of President Rodrigo Duterte, the telco is authorized to have 40% of its workforce under contractual employment, unlike its rivals Globe Telecom and PLDT, Inc.’s Smart Communications.
Contractualization is among the many things that ABS-CBN was nitpicked by those not in favor of the TV network’s 25-year franchise renewal, even if the company repeatedly explained that they follow legal grounds on project-based staff.
Even Duterte himself previously vowed that he would end contractualization. In 2019, however, he vetoed the Security of Tenure bill which aims to abolish contractualization in the country, in spite of the fact that he himself had certified it as urgent for immediate enactment.
Critics also couldn’t help but point out how DITO Telecommunity easily got its franchise, even after it failed to materialize its committed target to hold its technical launch last July 8.
“Note that a lot of reasons why ABS-CBN was denied of a franchise are present in DITO (not 100% Filipino owned, nonregular employees, oligarch),” a Twitter user noted.
Another netizen said: “Hindi na dumaan sa mabusising pagdinig katulad ng ginawa nila sa @ABSCBNNews franchise PINAYAGAN pa #DITO na halos kalahati ay CONTRACTUAL EMPLOYEES nila! Nasaan promise “to end #ENDO” ni duts mga DDS? Dahil ba kay #DennisUy #1 DDS?”
“No surprise that Dennis Uy, one of the Duterte-anointed oligarchs, is the main person behind this. But what we should be equally concerned about is the 40% ownership of DITO by a China-based firm,” tweeted another user.