DOJ urged to probe AFP helicopter deal
Edu Punay (The Philippine Star) - March 17, 2015 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Justice (DOJ) was asked yesterday to investigate an alleged extortion in connection with the contract for the supply of helicopters to the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

An official of Rice Aircraft Services Inc. (RASI) claimed that a Department of Finance (DOF) official, who assisted them in transacting with the government, demanded a cut in the P1.21-billion contract for the purchase of 21 German made UH-1D helicopters.

RASI vice president and Philippine country manager Phil Kemp refused to identify the DOF official, but vowed to cooperate in any investigation.

“During the implementation of the contract, the official demanded that the joint venture should pay 15 percent of the contract amount right away as ‘commission.’ This official claimed to be someone well versed with procurement,” Kemp told reporters in Manila yesterday.

After meeting with military and other government officials, Kemp said the authority of the representative from the DOF has been revoked.

He said they also received several threats to sabotage the project, including the cancellation of the performance bond they submitted to the AFP.

He said the DOF official has been claiming that parts of the helicopter were obsolete.

“The helicopters are conceivably the most highly modified and advanced version of the UH-1 that has ever existed. These are also configured with crash-worthy self-sealing main fuel cella,” Kemp said.

He said the helicopters are also night vision goggles-compatible and configured. Eight helicopters were modified, providing power reserves and expansion of the operational envelope, he added.

He said each aircraft underwent comprehensive ground testing at a facility in California.

Senate probe

Sen. Joseph Victor Ejercito filed Senate Resolution 1238 seeking an inquiry into the alleged “tailor-fitted” procurement of the helicopters.

“The Senate should check if any violations were made on the procurement law in the purchase of these 21 helicopters,” Ejercito, a member of the Senate committee on national defense and security, said. – With Christina Mendez

 

ARMED FORCES OF THE PHILIPPINES DEPARTMENT OF FINANCE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE EJERCITO HELICOPTERS JOSEPH VICTOR EJERCITO PHIL KEMP RICE AIRCRAFT SERVICES INC SENATE RESOLUTION WITH CHRISTINA MENDEZ
  • Latest
  • Trending
Latest
Recommended
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

FORGOT PASSWORD?
SIGN IN
or sign in with