LOOK: Gazmin, Catapang ride UH-1D chopper
Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin and Armed Forces chief General Gregorio Catapang Jr. boarded a UH-1D chopper on Monday after the turnover of Airbus C295 at Villamor Air Base. The officials headed to Northern Luzon Command in Tarlac.
The two choppers they used were the units that recently figured in a controversy. The DND has recently asked American firm Rice Aircraft Services and Eagle Copters to partially terminate the P1.2 billion chopper deal for failing to deliver the units on time.
Only eight of the 21 units have been delivered and accepted by the Air Force.
The contract for the purchase of the UH-1D choppers shall be partially terminated for exceeding the 10 percent maximum liquidated damages. As provided by the law, the government has the option to terminate a contract if the supplier exceeds the 10 percent maximum liquidated damages.
In a letter by Gazmin addressed to Robert Rice, the official representative of the joint venture, he said they exceeded the 10 percent maximum liquidated damages last Jan. 31, 2015.
“You failed to comply with the agreed schedule of requirement of the contract agreement which provides that the delivery should be within 180 calendar days upon opening of the letter of credit. The letter of credit was opened on March 27, 2014 and the deadline for delivery for contract is on September 21, 2014,”the letter also said.
Before the partial termination of the deal, a newspaper report claimed the choppers were “defective” and violated terms of the agreement.
During his State of the Nation Address in 2012, President Benigno Aquino III mentioned that the 21 choppers were being acquired to boost the capability of the Air Force. AU
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