BIR probe of DepEd’s ‘favored suppliers’ sought
MANILA, Philippines — Senator Jinggoy Estrada has asked the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) to investigate alleged “favored suppliers” of the Department of Education (DepEd).
Estrada sent a letter dated October 7 to BIR Commissioner Lilia Catris Guillermo, requesting the taxman to conduct the investigation on five companies for possible violation of the tax code.
A copy of the letter was released to reporters on Friday.
“This is to request your good office for an investigation on the reported ‘Favored Suppliers’ in the Department of Education, including but not limited, to the following companies: Advance Solutions Inc. (ASI), Columbia Technologies, Inc., Reddot Imaging Philippines, Inc., Techguru Inc. and Girltekki Inc., for possible criminal violations of the National Internal Revenue Code of 1997,” the letter states.
Early this month, the senator also sent a letter to the Commission on Audit, requesting for a special audit on the alleged favored suppliers of DepEd.
In a Senate blue ribbon committee hearing on DepEd’s “overpriced yet outdated” laptops purchased through the Department of Budget and Management-Procurement Service, Estrada pointed out that the said firms regularly provide laptop and information technology requirements to the agency.
It was also revealed during the hearing that ASI was awarded with nearly P6 billion in government contracts.
DepEd Director Abram Abanil, however, argued that the firms were the chosen suppliers as they offered the lowest bids.
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