QC hospital execs axed over contract splitting
Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales has ordered the dismissal of three officials of government-run East Avenue Medical Center over the anomalous purchase of P10.35 million worth of medical supplies and equipment in 2006.
Found guilty of the administrative offense of grave misconduct were medical chief Rolando Cortez, finance management officer Marietta Cruz and chief administrative officer Jose Calixtro.
They were found to have broken down the supplies procurement into 47 small purchases.
Each one did not exceed P250,000, allowing them to skirt the requirement of holding a public bidding.
The 47 contracts were awarded to only two suppliers, the Ombudsman said.
“Splitting” also took place in the procurement of 20 air conditioners and 13 exhaust fans worth P450,950.
Morales found the procurement “blatantly irregular and outside the bounds of established rules and principles as they opted to split the contracts even though [it] should have been subject of a single transaction.”
She said there was a lack of compelling or justifiable reason to split the contract since the officials failed to show that they obtained price quotations from bona fide suppliers.
Cortez was found to have approved all the purchase requests, purchase orders, disbursement vouchers and checks.
Cruz, on the other hand, certified the availability of funds and completeness of supporting documents while Calixtro signed the purchase requests and countersigned the checks.
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