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DPWH engineers blamed for infrastructure cost overruns

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Project engineers of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) should share the blame for cost overruns incurred in the construction of bridges and other infrastructure projects.

Oriental Mindoro Representative Rodolfo G. Valencia said that unilateral decisions by DPWH engineers to veer away from the original design has been the one of the main culprits for the bloated prices of some of the bridges built under the Arroyo administration.

Valencia  cited as an example the P112.5 million Abaton-Maidlang II Bridge in Calapan City which ended up costing double its original budget after the DPWH project engineer decided not to follow the design and engineering plans.

Valencia said that due to its flawed design, the same bridge collapsed just after five years of use. He noted that the bridge was so badly built that the DPWH decided to build a new one than repair it.

By forcing project engineers to take full responsibility of any design change, Valencia said these officials would think twice before tweaking the project designs of bridges and other infrastructure projects just to accommodate their preferred contractors or suppliers.

The delays and design changes have cost the government over P10 billion in excess expenses for bridges in the last three years ranging from five to 86.6 percent of the original costs based on a report by the Commission on Audit.


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Tags: dpwh , Government , Instrastructure


  • Anonymous

    what else is new at DPWH???? millions and billions ang project diyan….kaya nauulol ang mga contractor na maghanap ng makakapitan…maka pasok lang kahit isang project…

    and they go to church on Sundays…..

    • Anonymous

      Dahil tumatanggap rin ng attorney’s fee ang simbahan kaya sila nagsisimba.Mas malaki ang “fee” mas mataas na opisyal ng simbahan ang iyong abogado.

  • Anonymous

    The only time that government engineers erect infrastructure according to standards and will not try to make easy money off the project is when the structure happens to be their own house. You could not even trust them not to attempt to make easy money when constructing the church building they will  be worshiping in. I fully support the idea to provide  all government infrastructures with permanent markers bearing the data of the project including the  names of  contractor and the project engineer. Photos of these markers and the structures should be published in the Internet and in print for current consumption and posterity – and to preempt the possibility of the destruction of structure resulting to the disappearance of the slab. Status photos of the project will be added to the album every now and then especially after a storm. The awareness that  their names are associated with their handiwork for all time through the marker and the Internet and printed records and might be used for or against the future bearers of their names may yet induce the belated development of some sense of professional pride, dignity and conscience in these low life.

    I know of one government engineer who tried to substitute the materials for a house owned by a neighbor whose wife also happens to be a workmate of his wife. This prompted someone to remark that if a mild earthquake will occur, the house of the parents-in-law of the engineer might collapse because it was he who constructed it.

    • John

      add on the usual slogan of politicians:  THRU THE INITIATIVE OF TONGRESSMAN LOLONG BUAYA

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_GLLLMBSX5AMH3KQSHIIRQQYRGM milo go

    The Congress is as much to blame for the deficiencies as DPWH themselves. I agree with the Congressman there should be an official documentation on the project engineer and cost of completed structure and annual inspections of these bridges

    • John

      the truth is, the congressman himself is the cause of the deficiency.  this is where they could get their money.

      example,  the project is worth 10M.  what goes to the contractor is only 7M, with the 3M already taken by the congressman upon liquidation. and this would still be deducted of payments to the dpwh  head/engineers/personnel who .  With the reduced quality/specifications of their product, money should be given to the inspectors inorder to have it passed and paid. 
      Projects that are sticking to the specified standards would be unfinished as the budget would not be enough.  this, your loving congressman would get another allocation on the succeeding year.  this is why projects go well beyond target dates, and no one before is correcting them.

      Unless we can have concerned congressmen and public officials, we could always get substandard and unfinished projects.  People should change paradigm inorder for us to progress. 

  • http://inquirer.net unokritiko

    What can you expect on this peop;le is nothing at all!!
    They got their diploma at Recto University and become director/engineers in DPWH thru connection called nepotism!!! This is similar with NEA, NPC, and other offices of the govt!!! Worst than customs bureau in terms of money making for themselves!!
    A technical supervisor responsible of a projects overseeing more on financial gains for themselves with less in technical aspects of the prohect!!
    The most effective solution for this is revoking their PRC engineers license for life
    if their projects failed!!

  • Anonymous

    “DPWH engineers blamed for infrastructure cost overruns Oriental Mindoro Representative Rodolfo G. Valencia sai”

    Well, no need to pinpoint, it is given. They are engineers and they work at DPWH so who would do the public works….of course the Engineers.
    You cannot blame engineers, blame nature, blame typhoons, blame flood, blame road users, they are the culprits, they are the number one wrecking machine. No matter how strong the infrastructure is… is no match to nature.
    In short, blame climate change…the usual culprit.

  • Anonymous

    Poor DPWH engineers –  If GMA were still at the palace, it would have been her fault.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_E7SFPQFWHHEAJ4IZKPD7OYJXVM Jabba

    many of dpwh’s engineers are either “pasang awa” sa board exam or tadtad ng singko or “failed” ang mga transcripts so what can we expect from the quality of their brains? my cousin says he had a classmate who copied and cheated all his 5 years in college and yet now an assistant district engr in southern tagalog. i suggest dpwh conducts regular engineering exams to evaluate the intellectual ability of their engineers. many of them really just got their dpwh appointments thru connection and nepotism as one earlier post mentions.     

  • Anonymous

    Kaya namamayagpag ang ating mga enhinyero kahit palpak ang kanilang trabaho ay dahil meron silang maituturo na may kasalanan ng lahat, ang nasa itaas (hindi si P- Noy) katulad sa laging sinasabi ng mga doktor pag pumalpak sa paggamot sa isang may sakit. Hindi rin lang misan na ang talagang dapat sisihin ay ang mga opisyales ng ating pamahalaan , si Mayor, si Kongresman, si Gobernador, si Senador na pawang humihingi ng bahagi ng pundo ng mga proyekto at maliit na yung 10% parte, tulad ng nangyari sa Southern Palawan na nauna pang matapos ang isang malaking hotel kaysa pagtapos sa proyekto ng pag semento ng daan, itinaon ba naman sa panahon ng eleksyon at nakibahagi na rin ang sekretaryo ng DPWH para pondo sa eleksyon.

  • Anonymous

    Valencia is a contractor before he became the governor of Oriental Mindoro and later as Congressman.  He has been in the construction business for decades and is well versed with the corruption in the DPWH.  Ask the expert, he knows anything and everything.  Sanay siya diya. he he he he he he he

  • Anonymous

    Think of a piece of ice from the hands of Malacanang passed on down to the DBM, down to the DPWH, side ways to the Congressmen, Regional PWH, Gov., Prov Engr…..so what is left of that piece of ice when the reaches the project?  A drop of water (if you are lucky to get a drop).  So would that drop of water satisfy the thirsty Juan de la Cruz?

  • Anonymous

    wow. this is new. we are actually noting overruns now. diyan napunta ang tongpats noon! Sana lalo pang tumuwid at hindi tumuwad

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_X7ZXAWDLJZ4YDF2BTYTFXBNNEU ISCA

    as an engineer myself, with knowledge of the corruption of engineers employed by the gov’t—from city engineers to provincial engrs, the DPWH engineering staff is the most corrupt of the most corrupt engineers alive in the philippines…
    you think they think about safety and security when they review the construction plans presented to them? tell you what, the only question they ask is: HOW MUCH DO WE GET if we award this project to your company?

    • Anonymous

      I agree with you ISCA. I am an architect by profession. I deal with this kind of people most of the time. It is quite rare to find people who actually do not put ahead their “benefits” instead of just plainly doing their jobs. For example, the processing of building permits for construction. They have their own SOP. They don’t follow what is address in the building code in terms of the processing time. If you’re able to satisfy their demands, then you can get your permit within a week’s time or even less. If not, you’ll have to wait months depending on the project you are working on. I could just imagine how it is when you are dealing with projects worth millions even billions in DPWH. Sana hinde naman lahat.

      What is sad is that the honest people left are actually castigated. Will this change? I do hope so. 

  • Anonymous

    Maybe we can summarize the list of detestable acts of DPWH cloak-and-dagger operations particularly being done at the countryside:  This is how DPWH favored contractors operate to keep the flow of tax payer’s money into their pockets.  Rampant tearing down of still pristine condition concrete span of countryside road purposely being carried out to double its original budget and cornering uninterrupted flow of road projects contract. Care to make some sightseeing observation as you pass-by…and you will be amazed that in a matter of hours…the road you’re just traveled down…magically transformed into a stretch of rubble.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y74B6RY5N37I5JG2KAFGKGFPFA F**kinMO

    WTF and what are you going to do about it?   huh? 

  • Anonymous

    If the bridge that collapse was designed and built by a private contractor, shouldn’t we sue them for damages? I believe we should do the same for these DPWH engineers.  You can never instill professionalism without accountability.

    Designing a bridge is a very old engineering and for it to collapse  under normal and foreseen scenario (unless subjected to very extra-ordinary circumstance like big earthquake, etc) is really a big black eye to the quality of engineers we have in DPWH. If proven to be at fault, these engineers should at least have their licenses revoke.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_22PRRPV4XKOOIC5TBS2ZLT7PZQ Tirador Ngbuwaya

    First, I think the government of President Noynoy through the new DPWH secretary should audit the credentials and performance of these DPWH engineers. It is possible that many of these DPWH engineers are NOT qualified in their positions. They are just HIDING behind that piece of paper called  PRC license which CAN BE BOUGHT FROM  RECTO UNIVERSITY in Manila.  Meaning they are fakes !  They are just depending on the contractor’s estimates and design ! Then, make a LIFESTYLE checks on them. How many cars and mansions they have. Saan nag aaral ang mga anak. Ilang beses nag abroad ang mga asawa?

  • Anonymous

    Diyan sa Dona Maria Subdivision, Daraga, Albay, mayroong official ng DPWH, mala-palasyo ang bahay na nakatago sa mataas na bakod!
    Sa Sunshine Subdivision mayroon din. Sa Sto Domingo, Albay mayroon din. Sa Rawis, Bonot, at Buragwis, Legaspi City mayroon din. Sa Lakandula Drive, Legaspi City mayron din. Sa Penaranda Drive, Legaspi City mayron din. Yung isa may-ari na ng gasoline station…
    Nagsisilakihang bahay nila! Himala! Hindi naman nagtatrabaho ngunit naka time-in, umaga pa lang nasa restaurant nag-iinuman na agad. Kaya yung iba inataki sa puso, winaldas ang pera ng bayan.

  • Anonymous

    hahahaha congressman….di ka ba na “consult” dyan?
    anyway, its a pity how corruption has eaten the fabrics of our society and the very foundation of government accountability.
    dapat i review lahat ng projects and tingnan ang mgakagaya nyan-then i retire without benefits LAHAT NG ENGR na kasangkot! theyre not worthe their grain in salt. mga aanga anga sila-the least of their fault-if they are not corrupt. but most likely, CORRUPT YAN!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_UWISP2YXGDQ7K2SIX2GI37B2EI Darwin

    That’s what you get when you require so many certifications, permits, and other standards complying tests which you cannot centralize under one agency that will be transparent in its issuances. In the government, acy kind of restriction is an avenue for corruption. Yung recently submitted bill ni senator lacson on who are allowed to carry guns is another example. yayaman ang director of PNP na mag i-issue ng certification. Kabilang na ang mga staff nya na magpoproseso ng mga applications.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_PBO77K6PXKPQKPQQQOFRCYNJFA ricky

    “Project engineers of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) should share the blame for cost overruns incurred in the construction of bridges and other infrastructure projects.”

    – SYEMPRE naman. they are to be blamed. kasama na yung mga directors, managers, etc na mahilig mag pa photo-ops na nakalutang sa ere ng walang jetpack.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_7Q7TXSFOE7OV7R2AYR4STKQIBE Juna

    all these DPWH engineers should be subjected to assets and liabilities check…just looking at their properties one can easily conclude why the gov’t infra projects are way over the budget…

  • Anonymous

    Why blame only the DPWH Engineer? How about you congressmen/senators/mayors/governors who are getting 10-15% of the contract cost as “SOP”.  Anybody (even qualified) cannot just join “public biddings” unless you have the blessing of the “blessed Honorables”. About 35% of the contract cost is lost to the “SOP”, lagay, bigay, pabaon sa inspectors, regalo, etc. When a new project is open in the DPWH, it is like opening a jar of candies, so many hands want to dip into the jar. In turn, the contractor who have already paid all the bribes is already free to do whatever is left of the money with all eyes of the inspectors either covered by wad of bills or whose hands are tied by the DE,RD, Mayor, Gov……….This was why in spite of a very good pay I left my job as contractor’s PM and went abroad.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_LLPTRPFUTYJXKI3KJS4B2UO4LI Jim De Garman

    mister valencia you’re congressman for many years and yet you’re criticizing project engineers from DPWH with their judgement and responsibilities.  The change in design, alignment, and variation order can’t be decided by the project engineers alone….this should be directed to the central office for evaluation, redesign,change of plan and drawings, field resurvey, and geotechnical investigation.
    After RFIA made by the Director they have to prepare program of work to itemize every activities to get exact amount to be appropriated for the entire project, this will again presented to be approve for additional funding to the asst secretary.  The honorable congressman valencia has to know this administratively as this is well followed in congress.  

    If the bridge structures has been damage or collapse due to irrelevant construction sequence within the specified guaranty period, then you can say “the contract specification guidelines” has not being fully implemented because of corruption alienated to the contractor.



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