• Poll gadget bidder mum on graft raps


    After declaring that it is confident that its bid chances are greater than those of its rival Smartmatic-TIM, the Indra Sistemas, S. A. remained silent on accusations that it is linked to corrupt activities in Spain.

    Archibald de Mata, Indra lawyer, has refused to comment on the allegations, citing his “lack of personal knowledge” of issues faced by the Spanish company.

    Concerns had been raised by some groups that Indra is apparently among those being investigated for corruption in Spain.

    There were also issues aired over the Spanish government’s majority stake in the company, including Madrid’s role in appointing members of Indra’s board of directors.

    Indra has turned out to be a major IT company operating out of Spain since 1993, offering products and services to private and government entities in Southeast Asia and holding offices in several countries.

    It also has not been involved in setting up and operating automated election systems on a nationwide scale, apparently putting in doubt its capability to run poll machines that it would be bidding for to procure in connection with the 2016 balloting in the Philippines.

    It has surfaced that Indra’s main commercial interest is in the defense industry.

    In addition to involvement in alleged “scandals and wrongdoings” in several areas of its operations in other countries, officials of the Bids and Awards Committee of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) are also checking reports that Indra is actually controlled by the Spanish government, which supposedly owns majority shares of the company.

    Rep. Frenedil Castro of Capiz, chairman of the House Committee on Suffrage and Electoral Reforms, earlier said he was planning to conduct a congressional probe of Indra Sistemas.

    Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. has directed the BAC to look into the issues pertaining to Indra, particularly on the Spanish government’s involvement in the company.


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    1. CARLITO C YANG on

      This is the reason why Comelec should be vigilant in checkng the backgrounds of the bidders. Qualified, tested and corruption free bidders should bid for the new machines if the Philippines is to have good and credible election machines unlike the Smartmatic machines that failed in the last election.

      Smartmatic company should not be allowed to bid. Comelec should give more time for the bidders to submit their bids.