Raps filed vs CHEd chief over ‘rigged’ bidding | Inquirer News

Raps filed vs CHEd chief over ‘rigged’ bidding

Suspended Commissioner Aldrin Darilag of the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) on Thursday said the criminal charges—including graft and grave abuse of authority—he filed against his superior, Chair Prospero de Vera, stemmed from concerns raised by some heads of state universities and colleges (SUCs).

In his five-page complaint affidavit filed on Tuesday, Darilag claimed that De Vera forced him to favor pharmaceutical company Aspen Philippines as a provider of medical supplies for various SUCs during a series of biddings last year.

Knowing that the firm was incompliant with procurement laws, Darilag said he ignored De Vera’s directive.


In a message to the Inquirer, Darilag said he decided to file charges of graft, grave abuse of authority, harassment, and oppression after a number of SUC presidents, whom he refused to identify, brought to his attention the alleged rigged procurement process last year for medical supplies.


“There are SUCs who don’t receive funding if they don’t let Aspen win the bidding as a supplier,” Darilag said, quoting the affected SUC heads.

Darilag, who oversees teacher education, gender and development, and extension programs, was suspended for 90 days in mid-January for alleged grave misconduct, neglect in the performance of duty, and oppression.

De Vera earlier noted that the order came from Malacañang. It also directed the agency to conduct a fact-finding investigation “to determine the existence of a prima facie (self-evident) case” to serve as the basis for the filing of formal charges against Darilag.

No complaint

But the commissioner doubted that the ongoing probe against him would be fair because he was never furnished a copy of the complaint or the order, which he said was “a violation of his right to due process.”

“They conducted the investigation, but I didn’t receive even a single complaint. Also, the head of the investigation committee is known to be an ally of De Vera,” he told the Inquirer.

Darilag accused De Vera of being “hostile to me throughout my stint as commissioner.”


Darilag said this was evident in the sudden ban allegedly imposed on his staff from entering CHEd premises and performing their work.

“In fact, they were subjected to needless inspection of their clothes and belongings every time they came out of my office,” he said in his affidavit.

The reason behind “De Vera’s hostility is not difficult to discern,” Darilag said, adding that the opposed De Vera’s recommendation to disallow Biliran Province State University to open a maritime program.

He also surmised that De Vera may suspect that he revealed the chair’s “wrongdoings” in the budget hearings in the House of Representatives last year.

De Vera, for his part, denied Darilag’s allegations, clarifying that he was not part of the bids and awards committee in the CHEd or in any similar committees in any SUC.

“I am not in a position to manipulate procurement activities,” De Vera said in the statement to reporters.

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READ: CHEd commissioner suspended for 90 days calls penalty ‘unfair’

TAGS: charges, Ched, De Vera

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