September 07, 2018 at 08:30 pm
Julito G. Rada
THE Finance Department called as “erroneous” the claim of Rudolf Jurado, the sacked head of the Office of the Government Corporate Counsel, that the Governance Commission for Government-Owned and -Controlled Corporations revoked the bidding requirement for the Nayong Pilipino deal that included a casino-theme park project in Parañaque City.
Finance Undersecretary Bayani Agabin said in a statement Friday the oversight body never stated that public bidding was no longer necessary as a method of procurement for contracts entered into by state-run firms.
Agabin said GCG Memorandum Circular (MC) 2018-02, which Jurado cited to justify his claim, merely removed administrative overlays such as the submission to and approval by the GCG of a GOCC project before it is bid out.
“The governing boards of GOCCs are still required to ensure that contracts are not grossly disadvantageous to the government,” Agabin, who heads the DOF’s Legal Affairs Office, said. “GCG Memorandum Circular 2018-02 did not, in any way, state that public bidding should no longer be a requirement as a method of procurement for lease contracts of GOCCs.”
Jurado claimed earlier that a previous GCG circular—MC 2013-03 specified that public bidding should take place for the leasing of GOCC assets, such as the Nayong Pilipino property, but that the GCG and its ex-officio members—Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno and Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III—had revoked the bidding requirement through GCG MC 2018-02.
The former government corporate counsel cited GCG MC 2018-02 as his basis for allowing Nayong Pilipino to lease its land to a developer without the benefit of public bidding.
Agabin, however, refuted Jurado’s claim, saying the previous circular—MC 2013-03—did not impose public bidding as a mode of procurement for the lease of GOCC contracts in the first place. “Thus, there was no requirement to revoke under GCG MC 2018-02,” he said.