The Philippine Star
P1.3 B in combat items remain undelivered to PNP — COA
The Commission on Audit (COA) has directed the Philippine National Police (PNP) to demand the immediate delivery of mobility and combat assets worth P1.347 billion purchased by the previous administration through stateowned Philippine International Trading Corp. (PITC).
In its annual audit report on the PNP, the COA noted the items procured from the PITC in March and April 2016 remain undelivered as of Dec. 31, 2017, despite the payments made amounting P1,347,616,452.
“We recommended that (PNP) management demand the immediate delivery of all mobility/combat assets within the next six months; otherwise, require the PITC to refund the total advance payments of P1.347 billion for deposit to the National Treasury,” the COA said.
The COA further advised the PNP “to refrain from availing of the services of the PITC unless extremely necessary.”
The undelivered assets include 42 units of utility trucks, six units of light personnel carrier, four units of Integrator, 12 units of automatic grenade launcher, 3,300 units of poncho and 50 other related line items.
“Since 2016, when the fund transfers were made, none of the required items had been delivered as of Dec. 31, 2017... It is well to note that the P1.347 billion worth of mobility and combat assets could have greatly contributed to the capability of the police force to effectively and efficiently accomplish its mandate and would have benefited PNP personnel,” the COA said.
COA noted the memorandum of agreement (MOA) which the PNP, under the Aquino administration, had entered into with the PITC contained no provision as to the timeline of delivery of the mobility and combat assets.
COA said such agreement was “disadvantageous to the PNP, considering its urgent need for the above-mentioned equipment.”
The audit body said the PNP is set to incur additional expenses amounting P23.9 million as Article II of the MOA provided that the PITC shall be paid with “service fees” of up to four percent of Project’s Approved Budget for the Contract plus 12 percent value-added tax.
“The P23,904,722.15 service fees will be collected by the PITC from the PNP upon the completion/delivery of the procurement projects. A significant amount that could have been utilized instead to procure mobility assets had the PNP handled the procurement itself and conducted the necessary cost-benefit analysis before pushing through its plan to engage the services of the PITC,” the COA said.
The PNP replied the current administration has not availed of the services of the PITC for the past two years because of the said failure to deliver the previously procured items.
The PNP said its bids and awards committee is now the one handling the purchase of the programmed items under the PNP’s Capability Enhancement Program (CEP).
“As a matter of fact, PNP obtained an absorptive capacity of almost 98 percent in all PNP procurements for CY 2017,” the PNP said.
The COA also said a total of P1.893 billion in government funds appears to have been wasted with the PNP’s purchase of 2,054 units of patrol vehicles in 2015.
The police vehicles were found not suited for police operations and prone to frequent breakdowns.
In its annual audit report, the COA said the PNP, under the Aquino administration, had purchase 1,656 units of Mahindra Enforcer patrol jeeps worth P1,543,859,200 and 398 units of Mahindra Scorpio light transport vehicle (LTV) amounting to P349,444,000 without the conduct of any operational needs assessment.
The COA records showed all the vehicles were bought from Columbian Autocar Corp. (CAC) under the PNP’s CEP in March and December 2015.
Aside from the lack of assessment by the PNP’s Procurement Management Committee on the suitability of the Mahindra vehicles in police operations, especially in remote areas, there were also sudden “unsound” changes in the specifications of the vehicles prior to their procurement.
The audit body noted the National Police Commission (Napolcom) issued two resolutions dated Aug. 16, 2013 and May 8, 2014 setting the minimum standards in the specifications of the patrol jeeps to be procured but the PNP’s Uniform and Equipment Standardization Board proposed amendments which the Napolcom eventually approved.
The COA said the revised specifications provided for lower standards of vehicles “that are disadvantageous in terms of maneuverability and bigger load carrying capability.”