‘PCOS deal yet unawarded’


COMMISSION on Elections (Comelec) Chairperson Sixto Brillantes Jr. on Tuesday clarified that only the P300-million diagnostics contract was awarded to Smartmatic-TIM, not the entire refurbishing project for 80,000 old Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machines that costs P1.2 billion.

Reeling from a barrage of criticisms, including allegations that the P1.2-billion project was given to Smartmatic as “midnight deal” in preparation for Brillantes’ retirement next month, the Comelec chief said potential bidders for the refurbishment of the machines still have the chance to bid for the entire contract.

He noted that the contract awarded to Smartmatic-TIM was only the P300-million diagnostics of the PCOS machines.

“Akala nila P1.2 billion [was awarded to Smartmatic]. [The] P300-million is for the first part lang. Hindi pa yung actual refurbishing. Ang P900 million wala pa dun yun [Critics think that the P1.2-billion contract has been awarded to Smartmatic]. The P300 million is only for the first part. It is not for the actual refurbishing. The P900 million is still not there],” Brillantes explained.

“Pwede naman ibigay sa iba yung main refurbishing project. Ang importante tingnan muna kung ilan ang may sira. Binigay na namin sa Smartmatic yun, tutal sila naman ang manufacturer. Sila naman ang gumawa niyan e. Sasabihin nila ito ang bilang ng may sira, ito ang sira. After the diagnostics, pwede na natin i-discuss kung sa Smartmatic na din or public bidding naman [The main refurbishing project can be given to others. What is important is to look into the PCOS machines that are defective. We gave the contract to Smartmatic because they were the manufacturers of the machines. They will tell us the number of defective units. After the diagnostics, we can discuss if the contract goes to Smartmatic or another bidder],” he said.

According to the Comelec chairman, the decision whether to tap other companies for the refurbishment of the machines lies in the hands of the remaining commissioners since he, together with Commissioners Lucenito Tagle and Elias Yusoph, will retire on February 2.

Brillantes said no contract has been signed with Smartmatic because some details are still being negotiated.


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  1. The 300 million is just a bait and if not much noise will result, Sixto and the 2 other retiring commissioners will once again arrange to issue a contract to give the entire p.o. to Smartmatic and make sure it will be also done, midnight. At 10% commission for the deal amounting to 1.2 billion, it will total 120 million for the retiring commission-ners. And it is even a small commission. It is said that government executives demand 30 to 40 % commission for a transaction. If at 30% commission, the 3 retiring’s will share a whooping 360 million. WOW!

  2. will there be any technical representative from the government side to validate which machines are deffective & needs refurbishing, becuase from what i understand, from the government side ( as owners of the machines) we should already know how many of these machines needs diagnostics & or refurbishing. this kind of contract however you look at it, is you are at the mercy of the contractor, because it looks like they are the only ones that knows the outcome of the diagnostics, as we really don’t know what they are looking for. they can always come up at the end of the diagnostics, a number of different things to be repaired ( attributed & distributed ) to the different machines & who is there to validate? there is even a big possibility that the contractor could have already provided the information ahead of time to come up with the 300M amount, as nobody from the government side knows exactly what th eproblem is, then all the machines could be declared to be inopertive & all to be refurbished to get the 900M.

  3. Buwisit talaga itong si brilliantes!!kahit kilan,anong tawag kaya sa 300 million na inaward sa smartmatic! Ni lalang lang nito ang 300million!wala kang mabuting salita na masasabi sa taong ito,grabe ang kakapal ng mga tao ni Aquino,kuhangkuha -nila ang ugali niya!tama lang na magsama-sama ang mga ito!!