Local telephone giant, Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company GTT, has denied claims being made on social media that the company plans to restrict internet access to its customers during the period for the national recount of votes cast in the march 2 polls.
“GTT hereby states that this statement is baseless, libelous, and untrue”, the company’s Chief Executive Officer, Justin Nedd, said in a press release.
“Such a statement is irresponsible and has severe national security implications. I have stated before – and will state again – that GTT as a private entity is not politically inclined. We will work with all elected officials, and respect their various roles. We are independent in our corporate structure and do our best to support Guyana well beyond the provision of telecommunication services,” Nedd said.
Following is the full statement by GTT:
As we joined the world in commemorating World Press Freedom Day on Sunday, May 3, 2020 information, without any research, responsible conduct, basis or fact check was disseminated throughout social media channels, accusing GTT of being in talks with the incumbent Government to “shutting off if possible or to reduce internet speeds across the country to contain the spread of information” allegedly during the upcoming electoral recounting process.
GTT hereby states that this statement is baseless, libelous, and untrue. Such a statement is irresponsible and has severe national security implications. I have stated before – and will state again – that GTT as a private entity is not politically inclined. We will work with all elected officials, and respect their various roles. We are independent in our corporate structure and do our best to support Guyana well beyond the provision of telecommunication services.
That being said, what concerns us was the swift sharing of the erroneous contents of the article via social media. In keeping with celebrating the freedom of information, it would be prudent to also appreciate the terms of such freedoms. Generally, this is to be shrouded in the pursuit of truth and fact – and speaks to the dissemination of balanced, accurate, and credible information.
While this is largely the responsibility of the media, our access to social media holds us all accountable to these principles. It is disappointing that persons unhesitatingly shared that article to create division and incite dissension.
We are mindful also that our energies and collective efforts are needed elsewhere. There is a pandemic to manage – and far from withholding access to internet services, we have taken measures to make mobile services free to our medical frontliners, reduced rates for the business community, offered extra data to our mobile customers – and our MMG app is supporting the call to transact business from the safety of our homes. Additionally, in anticipation of increased demand, we increased Internet capacity on the 1st of March. In the coming weeks, we will announce even further measures to help the people of Guyana throughout this time.
There is never a good time to divide – but now more than ever, we need to unite. We are in this together Guyana – and as your telecommunication provider, we are committed to enabling the sharing of information and keeping you connected.
As the leader of GTT, taking a position of shutting off our customers for the sake of an alleged political ploy is not something that my team and I can ever justify, condone and hence our absolute condemnation of this spurious piece of misinformation. Let me reiterate that GTT is irrefutably committed to Guyana’s development and growth.