Rival wants Smartmatic out of poll bidding
Mayen Jaymalin (The Philippine Star) - February 16, 2015 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The battle rages anew among bidders as the Commission on Elections (Comelec) readies the second stage of public bidding for additional voting machines to be used in the 2016 elections.

Days before the start of the public bidding, Indra Sistemas S.A. sought to bar Smartmatic-Total Information Management (TIM) Corp. from participating.

In an 18-page motion for reconsideration filed before the commission last week, Indra asked Comelec to declare Smartmatic-TIM as ineligible for the second stage of public bidding due to its alleged lack of legal capacity to bid as a joint venture.

In filing the motion, Indra expressed the belief that the issue over the legal standing of Smartmatic-TIM should be resolved immediately and not reserved for the post-qualification stage.

There is sufficient evidence showing Smartmatic has limited capacity to exercise corporate powers only in relation to the 2010 national and local elections, said Indra.

“Verification, validation and ascertainment have shown, and proved, that Smartmatic-TIM has no legal capacity to participate in the bidding for the 2016 elections and undertake the project… Post-qualification would, therefore, be an exercise in futility,” Indra pointed out.

Indra further noted that delaying the determination of Smartmatic-TIM’s legal capacity for the post-qualification stage would be a waste of government resources, effort and time.

They also cited Smartmatic-TIM’s pending application with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as another proof of its lack of legal capacity to participate in the bidding.

During the post-qualification stage, the commission would determine if the would-be lowest calculated bidder complies with and is responsive to all the necessary requirements and conditions.

Comelec earlier dismissed the protest filed by Indra to declare Smartmatic-TIM as ineligible to bid for the P2.5-billion project for the purchase of optical mark readers.

The commission said Indra’s protest was unmeritorious since it was filed prematurely as the legal capacity of Smartmatic-TIM would only be determined during the post-qualification stage.

Only Indra and Smartmatic-TIM were declared qualified to bid for the lease of 23,000 voting units to supplement old precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines to be used in the 2016 polls.

The commission’s Bid and Awards Committee (BAC) unanimously declared Indra as eligible in the first stage of bidding based on its eligibility documents and initial technical proposals.

Smartmatic-TIM, however, was declared eligible via a majority vote of 3-2 from the BAC. 

 

BID AND AWARDS COMMITTEE COMELEC INDRA INDRA SISTEMAS S ONLY INDRA AND SMARTMATIC SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION SMARTMATIC SMARTMATIC-TOTAL INFORMATION MANAGEMENT TIM
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