Was there bonafide public bidding?

AS IT APPEARS - Lorenzo Paradiang Jr. -

For purposes of transparency and honest transactions devoid of any graft and corruption, or any shenanigan, government contracts or projects involving financial consideration, or that entails a corresponding public obligation, invariably require an honest-to-goodness competitive public bidding, with few exceptions.

Thus, the above query of this write-up… It appears that in the vicinity of the Mandaue City Land Transportation Office (LTO) in Looc, there are six existing – or used to be – Drug Testing Centers (DTC). One is owned by Dr. Danilo C. Dionson, another by a woman operator, and four other DTCs.

Collating local news reports, the woman owning one DTC seems to be chosen to operate “One Stop Shop” LTO at a newly-opened mall in Mandaue City, as motor vehicle drivers’ licensing center, to the exclusion of the other five DTCs. This was “indorsed for favorable action” to LTO Assistant Secretary Virginia P. Torres by LTO-7 Director Raul Aguilos.

Feeling aggrieved, Dr. Dionson complained to Aguilos, also inquiring “if these are the same group of persons covering LTO sites in the absence of COA bidding or legislative procedures.” Aguilos replied to Dr. Dionson that the woman’s letter of intent is “to provide and construct LTO Office (sic) in strict compliance and conformity with the requirements and provisions of Department Order 2007-33”. Incidentally, said woman had offered “to furnish Aguilos’ office the necessary documents of a “usufruct” as a requirement of Aguilos’ office.

Dr. Dionson raised the matter to LTO Executive Director Alfonso V. Tan, Jr. who tersely informed the former that “our Office has no record of any contract or MOA for the said LTO Office,” referring to the proposed “One Stop Shop” at the proposed LTO licensing center at the cited mall.

Sensing the inevitability of eventual transfer favorable to aforesaid woman alone and, eventual closure of the five other DTCs resulting in loss of income and loss of jobs of their employees, Dr. Dionson has come out in this paper dated January 21, 2012 that he is mulling to file suit versus LTO-7 Director Aguilos with the Ombudsman-Visayas. He accuses Aguilos of favoring that woman to conduct drug testing lab at the aforesaid Mall which he allegedly learned from newspapers about the transfer.

Given the background facts, one reiterates the title-query: Was there a bonafide public bidding? If none at all, except to favor only one DTC owner, is this transaction exempt from such competitive bidding?

Other questions also come up for answers… Before favorably acting on the “lucky” lady’s “letter of intent” did Aguilos give equal opportunities to the other 5 DTC owners to comment thereon? If none at all, was Aguilos “favorable action” not giving undue advantage to her lonesome and, to the disadvantage of Dr. Dionson and the four other proprietors of the DTCs operating at the Mandaue City LTO in Looc, Mandaue City?

Of course, other complaints obviously nagging Dr. Dionson and company could be if the transferred LTO licensing center could just be a way of boosting the Mall’s customers or clients which would also result in compromising ramifications. Likewise, considering that the “favored” one could have an affluent “backer”, what possible extraneous factors are left to the imagination of the five other DTCs owners left behind?

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