IT infrastructure firm says its telco towers are safe

Zaid-Zaini-telco-sacofaKUCHING: Sacofa Sdn Bhd (Sacofa), an ICT infrastructure company, has denied that its telecommunications towers are bad for health.

It also said it had nothing to do with land acquisition and, therefore, it did not “grab” land from others.

Its managing director Mohamed Zaid Zaini told The Borneo Post that telco towers emitted radio frequency (RF) radiation. Sacofa towers, he said, operated at extremely low frequencies and were harmless to humans.

He added: “To put that into context, that is the same kind of absolutely harmless emission given off by radios, lamps and televisions.”

He said the most recent round of testing in Taman Harmoni showed that Sibu Sacofa’s towers were performing 790 times better than the international commission on non-ionising radiation protection standards set by the World Health Organisation, and which had been adopted as a mandatory standard by the health ministry.

Zaid said this during a media meet to dispel misconceptions about telecommunication towers at a hotel here yesterday.

He added: “Our towers are built to the highest Malaysia and international standards and specifications. Our emissions rating perform far better than even the strictest global standards. Safety is always our priority.”

The Borneo Post quoted him as saying it was not true that telco towers posed an increased danger of lightning strikes.

“Research shows that people fishing, on camping holidays or boating on lakes are statistically struck by lightning more than others. Lightning rods and lightning arresters used by Sacofa help minimise any risk posed. Sacofa towers are are also equipped with arresters which offer a further level of protection,” he was quoted as saying.

On the location of telco towers that has been hotly debated in Sarawak, Zaid said that sites for the telco towers were identified based on the area’s current and future bandwidth demands, as well as what land was available.

On claims that Sacofa grabbed land to build telco towers, against the will of local communities, he said Sacofa did not own land banks and the land was provided by the state government.

“Land acquisitions are done by the state and not by Sacofa. We are the tech-infra owner not a land bank owner. Notice is given by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) or state government or by the telcos. Sacofa does not decide their locations.

“Strict criteria are applied before a telco tower is authorised for construction,” The Borneo Post quoted him as saying.