Watchdog Oftel – one paw doesn't know what the other is doing

Cocking its leg and sniffing other's poos would be an improvement

Oftel is in a tizz. Several newspapers today quote Oftel officials as saying that only 17 per cent of BT's local exchanges would be opened up to rival telcos by next July.

That's scandalous - and makes E-Minister Patricia Hewitt look like a right dullard after she went on the record saying that unbundled services would be "widely available" by next year.

A spokeswoman for the winged watchdog said this wasn't true - we don't know how many exchanges will be unbundled by next year, she said.

So there you have it - one paw not knowing what the other is doing. And another dog's dinner to go with the all the others.

Oh, and another thing. Yesterday, Oftel said more than 1.5 million people in Britain were accessing the Net using unmetered services.

Yet, in a letter to the FT a fortnight ago, David Edmonds, DG of Oftel, said: "Oftel has done much to promote unmetered internet access in the UK, 600,000 UK consumers are already enjoying this service..."

A spokeswoman said Edmonds' comments in the pink paper were based on an old report. Yeah right.

Time to clear the kennel for another hound, methinks. ®

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