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Red Carpet claim for meals lacks documents

Jessica Ann R. Pareja (The Freeman) - February 10, 2013 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - Almost three years after the meals were delivered and satisfied teachers who served in the 2010 October elections, the Cebu City Government cannot pay yet Red Carpet Catering Services Inc. due to lack of documents to support the voucher.

Diwa Cuevas, Acting Cebu City Accountant, said the lack of documents to support the payment of P5.2 million to Red Carpet is preventing them from processing it.

She said they will just wait for the court to resolve the case that the supplier filed.

Cuevas said the City Treasurer’s Office, which purchased the P5.2-million worth of packed meals last October 2010 elections, cannot justify the emergency purchase of the meals before the Commission on Elections.

To recall, COA suspended the payment to Red Carpet for the food it supplied during the October 2010 barangay elections (P5.2 million) and during the May 2010 national elections (P3 million).

COA suspended the payments after finding that the procurement did not undergo the regular bidding process.

The CTO purchased the packed meals for the October 2010 elections under emergency purchase because officials then said, “time is of the essence.”

Red Carpet said in the case they filed before the court that CTO tapped their services after a fastfood chain the city initially commissioned backed out at the last minute.

The fastfood chain backed out because the city failed to pay the 50 percent down payment.

Red Carpet, which trusts the city, agreed to supply through credit. However, COA suspended the payment because it found illegal the “emergency purchase” employed by the CTO.

The P5.2 million worth of meals went to the Board of Election Inspectors, City Hall employees who served during the election and Commission on Elections employees including policemen. It is three days worth of meals delivered in October 23, 24 and 25, 2010. The total amount has reached P5,208,600.

Cuevas said there are no documents to support the “emergency purchase” so the voucher is still pending.

The City Government has yet to pay Red Carpet but Mayor Michael Rama insisted to provide food for those who will serve the election on May 2013.

The Cebu City Comelec recommended to just give food allowance to the teachers. (FREEMAN)

ACTING CEBU CITY ACCOUNTANT BOARD OF ELECTION INSPECTORS CEBU CITY COMELEC CEBU CITY GOVERNMENT CITY CITY GOVERNMENT CITY HALL CITY TREASURER CUEVAS RED CARPET
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