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Feb 03rd
Home Sections Education & Technology OFWs Offer an Alternative to NBN-ZTEgate Project
OFWs Offer an Alternative to NBN-ZTEgate Project PDF Print E-mail
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Saturday, 16 February 2008 04:56

A Scoop of a News Report by the (Part I of a Series of Articles)

For the first time since the controversy on the cancelled national broadband network (NBN) project – as might be supplied by the ZTE Corporation of China – President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo (PGMA) broke her silence and said that she was taking the ZTE issue "very seriously."  Several individuals reportedly belonging to the President’s inner circle tried to revive the so-called NBN-ZTE project. In the meantime, a group of Overseas-Filipino workers (OFWs) and Filipino Americans has sent through channel to the Office of the President a proposal to make the Philippines the pilot project for an innovative broadband technology.

There are many benefits from the OFW-led Asian-American consortium’s proposal -- should the Philippine Government approve the project – that will accrue for the Filipino people. The first benefit is that it will make the Philippines the SELLER of a patented broadband technology instead of being the BUYER of a broadband system from a Mainland-Chinese company like the ZTE Corporation or other foreign suppliers. The consortium said that the Philippines would not need to obtain a loan to have a national-broadband network (NBN), as the proponents will instead invest in the innovative broadband technology proposed for the Philippines.

A member of the OFW-led consortium is an American citizen of Taiwanese descent who holds the patent for a business model called the "BCA" (Broadband via Commercial Aviation, AKA "Beyond Communications for Airlines"). The consortium is presently organizing an Asian-American version of an R&D company. The consortium leaders said that they have studied the patent and came up with major innovations that could make the technology more feasible for developing countries such as the Philippines and other Southeast-Asian nations.

At the same time, the Philippine President called for an end to "partisan wrangling," especially among hopefuls in the 2010 presidential elections.

"We take the ZTE issue very seriously. I moved quickly to cancel the project as soon as I could, after proper consultation with the government of China, which is after all, our largest export market," the President said in her message at the Philippine Economic Forum held at the Shangri-La Hotel in Makati City yesterday morning.

“We call on our political leaders of all parties and preferences to look to our future and ensure stability for the sake of the nation. Let us put aside partisan wrangling as candidates jockey for the presidency,” the President said.

The President also called on the Ombudsman and the Department of Justice to ensure "transparency" in their investigations on the alleged scandal involving the $329 million contract forged between the government and China’s ZTE Corp.

The Chief Executive cancelled the contract last year amid allegations of overpricing.


Editor’s Note: Portions of this report came from a press release issued by the Philippine Embassy in Washington, DC, about the reaction of PGMA to the NBN-ZTEgate.

"We want to fight corruption," PGMA said as she scored those with political ambition for putting "easy rhetoric over lazy charges" and placing personal ambition ahead of national progress.

"This type of charges emerged even in previous administrations as part of our less than impressive political culture. I hope this set of charges will not be a political football," PGMA stressed.

The OFW-led consortium said that if the pilot BCA project becomes a national undertaking in the Philippines, it may involve setting up in the Filipino homeland manufacturing facilities for state-of-the-art aircraft-borne antennae, blimps, weather balloons and other components needed for this new industry. The consortium said also that the innovative-BCA project could “reinvent” the Internet and cellular-telephone industries. It can deliver Internet and cellular-phone facilities rather inexpensively through the proposed wireless-broadband technology. It has been dubbed the “poor man’s broadband technology for the Internet and cell phones.”


Editor’s Note: To read again Part II of this series, please click on this link,

The Broadband-ZTEgate Scandal Shows Not-so-Broad Mind of Filipino Leaders

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Last Updated on Monday, 12 January 2009 14:39

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