No end to the corrupt practices of the Aquino Administration

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IT does not seem at all coincidental that the disclosure of the awarding of a three-year, P3.81-billion maintenance contract for the troubled Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT-3) was made during the busy holiday season, because it was just another in a now seemingly-unending string of sleazy, underhanded moves that the Aquino Administration would likely prefer the public not notice, or think about too much.

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Citing an “emergency,” Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya explained that the contract for the badly-needed repair and maintenance of the MRT was awarded through a negotiated procurement because two previous attempts at conducting a proper bidding – in September of last year and January of this year – failed to attract qualified bidders. As if to reassure the public that the current deal, which involves a consortium of Korea’s Busan Transportation Corporation and several Filipino companies, is fair and aboveboard, Abaya pointed out it was approved by the NEDA, the Department of Justice, and the Government Procurement Policy Board – which only makes us wonder what choice they were given.

Abaya has pleaded ignorance to what brought the MRT and the business arrangements to its present sorry state – the unceremonious dumping of the demonstrably qualified Sumitomo Corp., the abortive attempt to award the maintenance contract to a fraudulent local company with “connections,” and a ham-fisted extortion attempt on Czech rail vehicle manufacturer Inekon – because most of those dealings took place before he took his current position at the DOTC; he just signed the papers he was presented, he has said, two weeks after he took over from former Secretary Mar Roxas, implying he was largely ignorant of what was going on behind the scenes.

That, of course, is laughable. All it explains, really, is that Abaya has been incapable of managing the DOTC from the very beginning, due either to a lack of ability, a lack of correct intentions, or because of instructions from the higher-up. Any competent manager would not put his signature on – and therefore make himself legally responsible for, a point the Ombudsman has so far conveniently overlooked – any multi-year contract with a value in the billions without satisfying himself that the deal was necessary and correctly done.

Abaya’s claim that the rush to hand out a no-bid contract was because of an “emergency” is an insult as well. Yes, the condition of the MRT can indeed be described as an “emergency,” but 11 months have passed since the second “unsuccessful bidding” in January. The “emergency” at this point is entirely Abaya’s fault, for doing nothing for nearly a year.

Wasting the people’s money and putting their safety at risk are as much forms of corruption as outright theft – the results, from the public’s point of view, are no different. We can have no confidence that the deal that we’re now all obliged to pay for is fairly priced, and in the hands of a competent and efficient service provider, because Abaya’s inaction provides no alternative but to do nothing, which is obviously out of the question.

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20 Comments

  1. Philippines really need an effective and efficient rail transportation system. This is one system that can help alleviate the traffic problems of the country. Maintenance of the rail system is not a common type of maintenance since the rail system is an special type of system for us. Maintenance contracts and Construction contracts procurement are not ordinarily done in a similar bidding process. In Construction contract it is almost done in a fixed price, lowest bid, competitive bidding. In maintenance contracts which needs specialty skills on the part of the bidders it may be a negotiated bid usually in many instances to selected maintenance contractors that are highly qualified and experienced in maintaining such systems. the Japanese and the Koreans are both highly qualified countries when it comes to railway systems of transportation. They have the most extensive rails and subways installed and operated in their countries. Both are highly qualified to effectively maintain the project on bid. It now boils down to who can offer the most responsive and can offer to do it at the most economically advantage for the railway system on bid.

  2. Just look at projects implemented by congressional selection. Sayang. Mga walang kabuluhan sa economiya . Manatakin mo mga river bank protection sa mga liblib na lugar. Bakit hindi kalsada sa mga communities na hangga ngayon ay walang kalsada naghihirap mga magsasaka? Kasi po sa river bank proteksyon na ito malaki kupit.

  3. “No end to the corrupt practices of the Aquino Administration” – very libelous title. Kung panahon pa ni Mackoy ‘to pinatapon na sa dagat ang nagsulat nito. Matapang dahil walang nakalagay na pangalan ng may-akda.

    REPLY
    Ito po ay ang EDITORIAL ng Manila Times. Ibig sabihin po ng editorial ay ito ang paninindigan ng buong dyaryo namin. HIndi po kasi bayaran ng Malacanang tulad ng iba!

    • Leodegardo Pruna on

      Nagmamaangmaangan at naloloko lamang ang magsasabing walang korapsyon sa administration ni P-Noy. Maliwanag pa sa sikat ng araw ang mga nangyayari katulad ng mga pangalan A BAD man, ALCAponLA, SINGaSONg, ABAlaYA, SOLImonaMAN at ibapa. Sa akala mo ba ay labas ang nakakataas? Sabi nga – tell that to the marines. God bless the Philippines.

    • Dapat kung paninindigan man tawag niyo diyan, bilang isang kilalang dyaryo, hindi kayo magsasalita ng walang matibay na basehan malibang nag-imbestiga kayo mismo at may material at documentary evidences kayo maipapakita hindi dahil sa hinuha lang. Yung title niyo parang sigurado na talaga kayo. Yung paghimay sa balita lang at pagbibigay ng opinion ng walang pagiimbestiga at walang pinanghahawakang ebidensya ay hindi sapat para magbigay ng konklusyon sa title pa lang.

      Isa pa – “HIndi po kasi bayaran ng Malacanang tulad ng iba!” < paninindigan din ba yan o pagbibintang ng walang matibay na basehan? Ilabas niyo ang ebidensya para makita ng tao! Kung may malinaw at may matibay kayong maipapakita, asahan niyo dun ako sa iba magngangawa para tuligsain din sila.

    • masyado ka naman maka Admin. Ito isa pang kurapsyon para madismaya ka.

      bumili ng Kia K2700 para sa pulis ang gobreyno sa halagang 1.89M bawat isa.
      Alam mo ba magkano ang K2700?

  4. It is hard to believe that a contract of that size can be awarded withoit the imprimatur of our leader…if logic prevails we can come to the conclusion that all this is a scenario that had been planned and merely to be executed at the prejudice of hard working taxpayers… As usual

  5. New York subway, Tokyo subway, San Francisco subway has been in operation for a long time but no problem in maintenance because it is handled by experienced professional technicians. Our problem is corruption in the bidding process. The lowest bidder wins. That means the junkies bad companies wins because they are the lowest bidders combined by Abaya and corruption comes in. What do you expect from a corrupt government.

  6. Abaya is the main culprit. Pinoy is an accessory to the crime. They are best of friends. Abaya, Abad, Purissima have something in common, all of them are corrupt and all of them are close friend of Pinoy. I pity you Pinoy, you should have been a good president but you are so stubborn like a mule. I do not think I can see any good president during my lifetime. All of them are rotten like a rotten egg.

  7. Fidel A. Enriquez on

    What’s new with this administration. Much needed fund for this coming elections…tsk tsk

  8. I remember the statement of the mother of this incompetent leader, (corykong) let the filipino to suffer in able them to blame marcoses.. Talagang pinapahirapan nila ang mamayang Filipino..
    Gising Pilipinas, kung Filipino ka dapat may pakialam ka…Mga asal HAYUP ang mga pamilyang ito lalo na ang maginang kawatan..

  9. Manny De Guzman on

    Maghantay kayo mga kababayan dahil may milagrong mangyayari upang bayaran ang train na ito. Hindi man magtaas ng taxes may nilagdaan ng limang daang milyon dolyar na gagamitin daw sa disaster. Sino ang binola NG MGA GUNGGONG NA ITO.Sanay sila sa panloloko kaho alam ninla kong papaano paiikutin ang ulo ng taong bayan. Basta sa akin kapag pera ang pinag-usapan nakakatakot pagtiwalaan ang adminstrasyon ito. Mangganso,manloloko,sinungalin,bolero,MAGNANAKAW.

  10. WHERE is the corruption pratice in emergency granting of fund for the immediate repair and maintenance of the much needed upgrading of the railway transit system? it had undergone two failed bidding process. it is a negotiated contract so as to address the pressing claimors of our commuters. Pag hindi inaaksyonan.. inefficient. Pag inaksyonan kaagad ,,, Corrupt. Ang labo mo pre. May negotiated contract na . aware ang buong Pilipinas na may kasunduan na. Examine the contract if it is disadvantageous to the government or disadvantageous to your client who commission you to make a write up. Allowed ang Emergency fund in the procurement Act basta ma justify lang ng tama . Hindi palusot .

  11. it will take a lot of maintenance fot that infrastructure, we cannot do anything with the immediate approval of the budget what we can do is to keep an eye on this matter. transporatation is one of the basic needs of people and economy. a good governance build roads, trains or any form of transporation around the country,to help and speed up delivery of service. can you imagine working long hours and travelling even longer hours.

  12. I just hope that the P3.8 billion will save P-Noy and Abaya from having themselves run by the train. Saving these two lives is well-worth the price!

  13. Questions are Can we get Sumitomo back and can we afford its price? But no matter how qualified Sumitomo is, can it resurrect a system whose useful service life has evidently expired? New rails, trains, signaling system are definitely needed. Are there enough funds in this year’s PHP 3.02 trillion budget?

    • Sumitomo made good in their task in doing good maintenace to the MRT. However they were shied upon and nobody in this government cared to look at their performance just because their offer was high. What a pity, this gvernment looked for cheap, unqualified, untested, you name it because there is money for them.

    • Sumitomo is out because they refuse to pay up-front money, same as the Czechs even as Ballsy visited them with her dear husband.