• Lawmakers seek probe into Duty Free ‘midnight deals’


    LAWMAKERS at the House of Representatives are seeking a probe into supply and delivery agreements allegedly entered into by state-owned Duty Free Philippines Corp. (DFPC) without public bidding close to the end of the Aquino administration.

    The lawmakers filed a House resolution on February 28 urging the House Committee on Good Government and Public Accountability to conduct an inquiry or investigation in aid of legislation.

    According to them, “reports were received that there were contracts entered into by DFPC that did not undergo the required public bidding process and therefore are grossly disadvantageous to the government.”

    They alleged that “there is no sufficient justification for the premature grant of extensions of these contracts, which can be characterized as midnight deals of the previous officers of DFPC.”

    They alleged that “most of these contracts were renewed in 2013 for a new term of up to the year 2018. Surprisingly, in 2015 the previous officers of DFPC again extended the term of these contracts, three (3) years prior to their respective expiration, for another five (5) years from 2018 or up to 2023.”

    The House resolution was introduced by Representatives Eugene de Vera, Carlos Uybarreta, Ricardo Belmonte, Teodoro Montoro, Aurelio Gonzales, Ron Salo, Orestes Salon, Virgilio Lacson, Enrico Pineda, Michael Romero, Tom Villarin, Juan Pablo Bondoc, Anthony Bravo, Aniceto Bertiz, Salvador Belaro Jr., Manuel Luis Lopez, Christopher Co, Jose Panganiban Jr., Manuel Jose Dalipe, Arnolfo Teves Jr., Arthur Defensor, and Alfredo Garbin Jr.

    The House resolution has been pending before the House Committee on Rules since March 6.


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