DILG: Probe ‘anomalous’ anti-drug software project

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An investigation of an allegedly anomalous software project for the agency’s flagship program known as Mamamayang Ayaw sa Anomalya, Mamamayang Ayaw sa Iligal na Droga (MASA MASID) has been ordered by Catalino Cuy, Interior undersecretary and cfficer-in-charge.

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The order came after reports received by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) said one of its partners in the anti-illegal drug drive, the Drug Abuse Warning Inc. (Dawn), allegedly collected a significant amount of money from different barangay (villages) as payment for the MASA MASID Database and Reporting System (MMDRS) software and hardware.

“We have received reports about the irregular activities of Dawn which may be considered as material misrepresentation and violation [of]the agreement it has entered into with the DILG,” Cuy said.

“For this, I have ordered an investigation of the matter and pending thereof, prudence dictates that the aforesaid partnership with Dawn be suspended until further notice,” he added.

In January, the DILG signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with Dawn wherein the group offered to donate a data gathering and analysis software system for MASA MASID to monitor drug-related incidents in a particular community at no cost to the government.

Under the agreement, Dawn offered to donate a copyrighted public surveillance system called “Dawn 2016 Series,” which shall gather data on suspected drug users and pushers in communities.

It electronically forwards the same information to concerned government and/or law enforcement agencies for further verification and appropriate action for any acts of violation by the suspected drug dependents.

The partnership between the DILG and Dawn was suspended by Cuy after he received reports that there is an alleged P75,000 charge for each set of MMDRS software and hardware in all villages.

Cuy said “[i]t is very clear” in the MOA that the system coming from Dawn shall be donated to the DILG at no cost to the agency and the agreement signing “was not in any way” engaged with procurement of software or hardware or other goods.

He added that the villages’ procurement of the MMDRS hardware was not indicated in the signed MOA nor was it disclosed during meetings with the DILG.

Cuy directed the DILG Legal and Legislative Liaison Service and its Internal Audit Service to conduct the investigation of the MASA MASID software project and to submit a comprehensive report on their findings and recommendations.

He advised the central, regional and field personnel of DILG as well as local chief executives on the suspension of the MOA with Dawn regarding implementation of the MASA MASID program. DEMPSEY REYES

 

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