Secretary Carandang seeks apology from Rep. Mitos Magsaysay for bum steer | Inquirer News
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Secretary Carandang seeks apology from Rep. Mitos Magsaysay for bum steer

Communications Secretary Ricky Carandang on Thursday demanded an apology from Zambales Rep. Mitos Magsaysay over the latter’s allegations that the purchase of P1.6-million worth of laptops for the Palace communications group had been overpriced.

Carandang said what Magsaysay got was a bum steer (“kuryente”) from his newly-resigned assistant secretary Reginald Tongol, an allegedly “disgruntled” and “vindictive” employee who allegedly lied when he said that the purchase of the 24 Apple laptops by the Presidential Communications Strategic Planning Office (PDSPO) was attended with corruption.

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“If she wants to do the decent thing then I will do the decent thing and accept her apology and then we can close this little chapter,” he said.

Magsaysay on Wednesday alleged that Tongol had resigned rather than follow Carandang’s directive that he sign the purchase order for the computers which were bought without the mandatory bidding.

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But Carandang claimed that Tongol resigned last week after he told him to maybe look for another job as he was not performing well at his job.

Carandang and deputy presidential spokersperson Abigail Valte on Thursday showed reporters some documents that they said proved that the PDSPO’s purchase of the laptops was “aboveboard” and not overpriced.

Among the documents was an affidavit of the publication of two bidding notices put out by PDSPO for the laptops in May and June.

Valte said the two biddings failed because no bidder came forward, following which the PDSPO decided to go through a negotiated bidding which she said was in accordance with the Procurement Law.

Carandang said the PCDSO was able to save money because it was able to buy each computer for P66,000 to 67,000, against the current market price of P75,000.

Valte said Tongol was a “disgruntled” and a “vindictive” employee who “had been called out for inefficiency more times that I can actually count”.

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She said Tongol headed the administrative division of Carandang’s office and was in charge of procurement and presided over the bids and awards committee.

She said President Aquino already knew of Tongol’s resignation letter but has yet to act on it.

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TAGS: assistant secretary Reginald Tongol, Bids and Awards Committee, Communications Secretary Ricky Carandang, P1.6-million laptops, Zambales Rep. Mitos Magsaysay
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