DOE disputes Pacquiao’s claims of corruption; says senator lacked research | Inquirer News
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DOE disputes Pacquiao’s claims of corruption; says senator lacked research

By: - Reporter / @DYGalvezINQ
/ 01:32 PM July 07, 2021
Department of Energy Assistant Secretary Gerardo Erguiza Jr.

Department of Energy Assistant Secretary Gerardo Erguiza Jr. Screen grab from a public briefing aired by PTV-4

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Energy (DOE) on Wednesday disputed Senator Manny Pacquiao’s accusations of corruption in the agency, saying the lawmaker may have been “ill-advised” and lacked the necessary research on the matter.

Pacquiao earlier claimed that DOE had given a private company—Independent Electricity Market Operator of the Philippines (IEMOP)— which only has P7,000 paid-up capital, the power to become an independent electricity stock market operator.

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He claimed that the contract awarded to the spot market operator, which amassed billions of pesos in just over a year, did not go through a bidding process.

DOE Asec. Gerardo Erguiza Jr. denied that there has been such a transaction, and even so, awarding a contract to be an independent market operator does not even need to go through a bidding process as provided by law.

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Erguiza also said the issue has already been discussed “comprehensively” and “exhaustively” in a hearing in the House of Representatives.

“Wala pong transaksyon na ganyan. Gusto ko pang sabihin na medyo ill-advised yata si Senator Pacquiao, at nagkulang ang research dahil walang ganyang pangyayari dito,” Erguiza said in a televised public briefing.

(There was no transaction like that. I want to say that the senator is ill-advised on the matter and he lacks research.)

“Ang independent market operator ay hindi pwedeng i-bid ‘yan dahil hindi talaga dadaan sa bidding ito. Walang requirement, hindi ito kailangan sundin ang Government Procurement Act,” he added.

(The independent market operator cannot be bidded out because it does not need to undergo a bidding process. There are no requirements, this does not need to follow the Government Procurement Act.)

Erguiza said the establishment of an independent market operator is mandated by the Epira law and the DOE is only tasked to draft a policy framework for it.

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He also said that establishing an independent market operator does not need a huge paid-up capital since it would only absorb the temporary market operator’s functions, assets, and liabilities, which was previously the Philippine Electricity Market Operator.

Further, the main task of an independent market operator is to oversee the operation and administrative aspects of the conduct of market operators.

The DOE is also not involved in the operations of IEMOP, he said.

Erguiza said Pacquiao is welcome to substantiate and provide evidence for his claims. The DOE, on the other hand, is also willing to give its documents to dispute the senator’s claims.

“Handa kami na humarap kung ano man ang hanapin nilang dokumento, hanapin nila ilalabas namin para patunayan kung ano ang katotohanan,” he said.

(We are ready to give them whatever document they need to prove the truth.)

JPV

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TAGS: claims, corruption in government, DoE, Pacquiao, Pacquiao allegations
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