Montejo: No need for separate dep?t of ICT

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[/caption] Speaking at the recent ?DICT debate forum? organized by the Management Association of the Philippines (MAP) at the Hotel Intercontinental in Makati City, Montejo argued that it may no longer be necessary to create a DICT since the DOST has the ?competence and experience to uphold the interests of the ICT sector.? Montejo?s statement somehow contradicts the position earlier espoused by the Information and Communications Technology Office (ICTO), which is an attached agency under the DOST, which said it was not against the creation of the DICT. During the floor deliberations at the Senate for the proposed DICT bill, ICTO executive director Louis Casambre stated that the government is not opposing the formation of the DICT. He did not say, however, that the Aquino administration is supporting the bill. Montejo?s statement at the MAP debate was the same position taken by DOST undersecretary Fortunato dela Pena in a Senate hearing last year for the DICT bill. The DICT bill has since gotten the approval of the Senate and the House of Representatives, but is still awaiting bicameral deliberations to reconcile the different versions passed by both houses of Congress. The DICT bill was actually passed by Congress way ahead of the proposed laws on cybercrime and data privacy. But the two said legislations have already been approved by the bicam panel and have been submitted to Malacanang for the signature of the president. Aside from Montejo, who is the brother-in-law of Executive Secretary Paquito ?Jojo? Ochoa Jr., it is also well-known that Department of Transportation and Communications secretary Manuel ?Mar? Roxas II is also staunchly against the formation of the DICT. ]]>

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