Telecom Regulator Pushes For Good Service During Elections

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Information is crucial during the commune elections and many access news and updates through their mobile phones and laptops. KHMER TIMES / MAI VIREAK

The Telecommunication Regulator of Cambodia yesterday urged all mobile operators to ensure that their services remain uninterrupted throughout the remainder of the commune election campaign period and during this weekend’s polling.

The letter stated that campaign period will likely see people using their phones more often to share information regarding political parties or to promote certain political messages to their supporters via calls, text or social media.

“We would like to inform all mobile operators that during the 2017 commune election campaign period, people will want to communicate more and get new information about development of government policies and information about the election in general,” the letter read.

“We do believe that we will get strong support from all of you to ensure the quality of your services and ensure that there are no interruptions during the election campaign period,” it added.

TRC spokesperson Im Vutha said that the announcement was not out of the ordinary as the regulator often sent out similar notices during major events like that of the ASEAN meeting and the World Economic Forum.

“As you may well be aware, social media is playing a very critical role in informing our people on whether the news is true or not. So during this time, our people will be making a lot of calls or using a lot of date to communicate or share information because they want to know about election disputes,” he said.

“This announcement is made to ensure that those mobile operators are preparing well to avoid any accidental interruptions and also so that they can have their personnel on standby to deal with issues in a timely manner.

“Of course I don’t deny that service may be a bit slow at times due to everyone making calls or using data,” he said.

According to TRC data, by the end of last year there were six mobile operators in Cambodia with 19.45 million subscribers, of which 7.4 million were internet subscribers.

The commune election is slated to take place on Sunday, with campaigning scheduled to end on Friday.

This article was originally published in the Khmer Times.