NBI asked to uncover anomalies in license plates contract
MANILA, Philippines — An anti-corruption group has asked the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) for a definitive report on alleged irregularities in the P 3.8 billion government contract for motor vehicle license plates.
In a letter made public Monday, the Anti-Trapo Movement of the Philippines (ATM), through its president, Leon Peralta, sought assistance from newly appointed NBI officer-in-charge Medardo De Lemos to help uncover anomalies in the contract.
“Any findings of culpability by the Bureau may just be the silver bullet needed to prevent and preempt another disastrous mistake about to be committed by the DOTC-LTO by allowing such financially incapable, incompetent and a recalcitrant legal offender to undertake the manufacture and supply of our motor vehicle license plates for the next five years, to the detriment and further extended suffering of our motoring public and the Filipino people as a whole,” the group said in its letter.
The P3.8 billion Department of Transportation and Communications’ “Motor Vehicle License Plate Standardization Project” was offered for public bidding last May 6, 2013.
The group said one of the Filipino Joint Venture partners namely Power Plates Development Concept has since been identified to have been not once, but apparently continually engaged and involved with the manufacture of unauthorized and illegal license plates since 2004 up to 2006.
The group pointed out that it is not the first time that irregularities have marred the contract.
The anomaly in 2009, the group said led to an increase in the backlog of license plates issuances. In 2012, substandard materials were delivered to the Land Transportation Office (LTO) and backlog license plates increased further.
“Unfortunately, despite the several notices and pleadings to the department to thoroughly investigate the matter, it obviously fell on deaf ears,” they said.
A case has also been filed with the Office of the Ombudsman.
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