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Diokno, 6 other BSP execs sued over national ID deal
Ricardo Fulgencio IV alleged that BSP officials circumvented the government procurement law when they awarded to private firm AllCard International the contract for the supply of 116 million ID cards to be used for the National ID System program.
STAR/File

Diokno, 6 other BSP execs sued over national ID deal

Elizabeth Marcelo, Czeriza Valencia (The Philippine Star) - January 21, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Benjamin Diokno and six other BSP officials were charged with graft before the Office of the Ombudsman yesterday over the P1.75-billion supply and equipment contract for the national identification system.

In the 10-page complaint, the ombudsman was urged to investigate the BSP officials for violating Republic Act 3019, the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, and RA 9184, the Government Procurement Reform Act.

The complainant in the case was Ricardo Fulgencio IV, who identified himself as chairman of the anti-corruption group Stop Corruption Organization of the Philippines Inc. (SCOPI). He was accompanied by his lawyer, Doroteo Miguel Carillo.

Fulgencio alleged that BSP officials circumvented the government procurement law when they awarded to private firm AllCard International the contract for the supply of 116 million ID cards to be used for the National ID System program.

Aside from Diokno, named respondents in the complaint were BSP Security Plant Complex bids and awards committee chair Prudence Angelita Kasala, BSP director Rogel Joseph del Rosario, BSP-SPC acting production manager Carl Cesar Bibat, BSP-SPC BAC vice-chair Marianne Santos and BAC members Salvador del Mundo and Giovanni Israel Joson.

Fulgencio said that while the Terms of Reference (TOR) for the deal only covers the lease of card production equipment for a period of three years and lease of card personalization equipment for a period of four years, a “nefarious” provision was inserted in the TOR requiring the winning bidder, in this case AllCard, to procure the raw materials for the ID cards from Swedish firm OVD Kinegram AG.

Fulgencio said that Section 5, Paragraph A of the TOR specifically stated that the materials for the diffractive optically variable image device (DOVID) shall be procured “by rolls or on polycarbonate sheets from Kinegram, sufficient for printing, production and packaging of 116 million pieces” of Philippine ID cards.

Fulgencio said the procurement of raw materials for the cards should have undergone a separate bidding.

“Based on the cost breakdown in the financial proposal submitted by AllCard, P904,800,000 will be paid out to OVD Kinegram AG for the DOVID materials and another P841 million for polycarbonate sheets. This simply means that OVD Kinegram AG was awarded the amount of P1.75 billion without going through public bidding,” Fulgencio’s complaint read.

Furthermore, the complaint said the BSP-SPC BAC’s identification of specific brand name of materials also contravened Section 18 of RA 9184.

Fulgencio said that his organization requested from Kasala the eligibility documents of AllCard that would show that the firm has the capability to undertake the ID project, but the BSP official allegedly refused.

For this reason, the complaint stated that Kasala must also be held liable for violation of Executive Order No. 02, Series of 2016, the Freedom of Information order of President Duterte.

Meanwhile, Fulgencio said that he included Diokno in the complaint by virtue of command responsibility, noting that the Notice of Award of the contract to AllCard on Sept. 29, 2020, as well as the Notice to Proceed with the project dated Oct. 1, 2020, were both signed by the BSP governor.

Fulgencio said the Memorandum of Agreement between the BSP and AllCard was also signed by Diokno.

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