Turkey’s Deputy Minister of Transport and Infrastructure Ömer Fatih Sayan has told Habertürk columnist Kemal Öztürk that an investigation was launched against the GSM operators Turkcell, Türk Telekom and Vodafone over their failure to provide reliable mobile and internet communication during search and rescue efforts in the aftermath of Feb. 6-dated major earthquakes.
Öztürk gave details of his interview with Sayan in his column on March 2. Öztürk wrote that when he told Sayan about victims’ anger at the three GSM operators for leaving the quake region without connectivity, the deputy minister had said the government was aware of the issue.
“He (Sayan) said that an investigation was launched against the three GSM companies on Feb. 14, 2023 and what is necessary will be done. I will also follow up on the issue. Let’s see what kind of a penalty will be given to Türk Telekom whose chairman is Fatih Sayan himself?” Öztürk wrote.
Öztürk however wrote that these three GSM operators are the only responsible ones. “There is also an institution that is inspecting these (firms) in terms of technicality, commercial issues and legal manners. It is the Information and Communications Technologies Authority (BTK). It turns out it has also not done its duty and its inspections have turned futile. And this institution is under the Transport and Infrastructure Ministry. It seems that the ministry has also not done its duty,” Öztürk wrote.