Thu, 11 Aug 2022

Port Louis [Mauritius], August 1 (ANI): The former Chief Executive Officer of Mauritius Telecom (MT) Sherry Singh is accused of using selective bidding exercises to help the Chinese mega-firm Huawei, which already awarded contracts worth hundreds of millions of rupees, to expand its business.

The 3G network in Mauritius has been largely developed by Huawei.The issue of the allocation of contracts to Huawei under the era of Sherry Singh, the former Chief Executive Officer of Mauritius Telecom has pointed toward the unholy alliance between the executive and the Chinese government.

Different stories are heard about the issue of the allocation of contracts to Huawei under the era of ex-CEO Sherry Singh.

Huawei has been awarded worth hundreds of millions of rupees contracts during 2006-07, which skyrocketed to billions of rupees under Singh.

In 2006-07, Huawei entered the national telecommunications company under the direction of the former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Mauritius Telecom (MT) Sarat Lallah.

During this same period, Huawei was entrusted with the UTRAN 3G project. The telecom giant is also awarded a contract to expand its internet services. He had thus proceeded to the installation of six switches and a router in order to consolidate the resilience of the network at the time.

As Mauritius witnessed the rise in the use of internet services and mobile telephony, Huawei is entrusted with the task of extending the "mobile network capacity and coverage" by 18 per cent.

Later, the Chinese company granted another contract to develop additional 3G sites in Mauritius.

"If the contracts allocated to Huawei during the 2006-07 period amounted to hundreds of millions of rupees, from 2015, billions of rupees are concerned, in particular with the Safe City camera project worth Rs 19 billion," a sources at MT, cited by Mauritius News said.

Notably, the other flagship telecom projects with Huawei's imprint at MT are my.t money, smart box development, among others.

Former members of the board of directors who served under his mandate forcefully maintain that each contract allocation was made following a call for tenders, other sources emanating from Top Management express serious reservations about certain processes.

"The 3G network in Mauritius has been largely developed by Huawei. You should also know that other companies like Emtel have, on several occasions, called on Huawei's services to develop their network. It should therefore not be believed that Huawei only collaborates with Mauritius Telecom," the source said.

However, Sherry Singh maintained that the tendering procedures evolved from 2015.

"It was from 2015 that Mauritius Telecom began to use selected bidding exercises. That is to say that the calls for tenders were limited to a certain number of suppliers," sources cited by Mauritius News said.

Another element which also establishes the MT-Huawei link, is related to recruitment, as per media reports.

Moreover, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has accused China of engaging in surveillance activities through Huawei. The FBI discovered that the Chinese-made Huawei equipment atop cell towers near US military bases in the rural Midwest could capture and disrupt highly restricted Defense Department communications, including those used by US Strategic Command, which oversees the country's nuclear weapons, CNN reported citing sources.The findings of the investigation were based on the information provided by current and former national security officials.However, it is difficult to determine whether the data was sent to Beijing from these towers as it was difficult to prove that a given package of data was stolen and sent overseas, media reported.

Even though China denied the allegations of spying on the US, several sources have said that the Huawei equipment has the ability to intercept commercial cell traffic along with highly restricted airwaves that are used by the military and can disrupt critical US Strategic Command communications, allowing the country to spy on America's nuclear arsenal, it added.

"This gets into some of the most sensitive things we do. It would impact our ability to essentially command and control with the nuclear triad. That goes into the Bona Fide Determination (BFD) category. If it is possible for that to be disrupted, then that is a very bad day," a former FBI official said.(ANI)

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