Anomalies in bidding of Kennon project exposed

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BAGUIO CITY  – Two contractors exposed the alleged anomalies committed by the members of the Bids and Awards Committee (BAC) of the Cordillera office of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH-CAR) that caused the outright disqualification of seven city public works contractors and the award of the multi-million infrastructure project along Kennon Road to an outsider with alleged questionable track record.

In his motion for reconsideration filed with the DPWH-CAR BAC, Brandy D. Abeya, authorized managing officer of RODEKON General Construction and Enterprise, petitioned the BAC to declare the recent conduct of the public bidding of a P144-million project along Kennon Road a failure based on the pertinent rules and regulations of Republic Act (RA) 9184 or the Government Procurement Act, reservation clause which states that the head of the procuring entity reserves the right to reject any and all bids, declare failure of bidding, or not award the contract if the BAC is found to have failed in following the prescribed bidding procedures.

Earlier, the BAC declared RODEKON General Construction and Enterprise as ineligible to participate in the bidding of the project rehabilitation of the flood mitigation structures along the Bued River Basin, Camp 1 section, Tabaan Sur, Tuba, Benguet because of incomplete attachment for completed contracts and its work experience category does not match the contract profile.

However, Abeya argued on the matter of incomplete attachments for completed contracts, the standard form and its required attachment for record of completed contract was not specified in the bid documents so the company submitted its contractor’s information mentioned for ready reference of checking the firm’s completed projects.

“We strongly believe that the contractor’s information record is the most reliable for this needed information,” Abeya stressed.

On the company’s work experience which does not match the contract profile, he contested the non-revision of the contract’s major category of work, given that the first issued bill of quantities was revised from slope protection structures to bridge construction.

Based on the originally issued bill of quantities, the major items of work are bank and slope protection works and drainage and slope protection structures which comprises 41 percent and 39 percent of the computed bid, respectively, hence, the declaration of FCSPS as the major category of work is justified.

On October 17, 2019, Bid Bulletin No. 25 was issued moving the deadline of submission and opening of bids from October 24, 2019 to November 7, 2019 due to reported major changes in scope of work caused by additional damages stated on the said bulletin.

On October 31, 2019, Supplemental Bid Bulletin No. 29 was issued with the attached new and revised bill of quantities and new and revised minimum equipment requirement and the revised computation was reflected therein.

Abeya pointed out that based on the computed bid price of the revised bill of quantities issued, bridge construction was found to be the major category of works which comprise 74 percent of the bid amount, hence, single largest completed contract should have been based on the major category of work which is bridge construction.

Further, he asserted that the drawings and plans for the project were not also readily available for the contractor to review, violating Rule VI, Section 17.1.g of the revised implementing rules and regulations of RA 9184 which clearly states that the bidding documents shall be prepared by the procuring entity following the standard forms and manuals prescribed by the Government Procurement Board and that the same shall include plans and drawings and technical specifications among others.

On the other hand, Cheryl A. Villacarlos, authorized managing officer of MarkBelt Construction, Trading and Development Corp., stated that the company submitted in their first envelope the state of its Single Largest Completed Contract (SLCC) to prove that the same is eligible to participate in the bidding for the project and that the company did not submit a list of its completed projects because the same is not required under the 2016 revised rules and regulations.

“In view of the foregoing, it is very clear that the finding of your BAC that we are ineligible to participate in the bidding of the project because we have no list of completed projects and its attachments is totally wrong and must be reconsidered,” she stressed.

Villacarlos claimed the agency’s authorized liaison officer who attended the bidding informed them that after the BAC had disqualified all the other bidders except Gemma Construction and Supply, Inc. Arcinue Development Corporation Joint Venture, all the representatives of the other bidders were ordered to leave the bidding room.

“We find this order highly anomalous because the bidding process must be open to the public, not only to preclude any suspicion of anomaly but to prevent any anomaly from being committed during the bid opening,” Villacarlos stated.

RODEKON General Construction and Enterprise and MarkBelt Construction, Trading and Development Corp. were among the 7 city contractors disqualified by the DPWH-CAR BAC during the conduct of the bidding of the multi-million project last November 7, 2019.

The motions for the reconsideration of both the disqualified contractors were furnished Public works Secretary Mark Villar and the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission for their information, guidance, ready reference and further needed action.

By HENT
Photo by: Joseph B. Manzano

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