It looks like that Inekon, the Czech company mentioned by Ambassador Josef Rychtar as the subject of an alleged $30-million extortion try a couple of years ago, has patched things up with the Transportation Department.
A group led by Inekon emerged as the lowest bidder for the negotiated procurement for the six-month maintenance of the MRT Line 3 rolling stocks, depot equipment and signaling system on April 17, 2015, documents show. It was the second time the negotiation for the six-month contract was held, after the bids and awards committee disqualified the former lowest bidder—the joint venture of Schunk Bahn-und Industriatechnik GmbH and Comm Builders & Technology Philippines Corp. in the first round.
Sources said the Mosa-Inekon-Ekoba group submitted a bid of P120 million in the second round, lower than those submitted by SBI-CBT joint venture and Global Epcom Services, the existing MRT maintenance provider.
SBI-CBT, however, is protesting the alleged “ample time” granted to Inekon. In a letter to DoTC assistant secretary and bids and awards committee chairman Camille Alcaraz on April 23, 2015, SBI-CBT questioned why the government negotiating team announced the “contemplated post-qualification” of Mosa-Inekon-Ekoba, right after the opening of the documents on April 17.
This was despite the fact that Inekon said it would take them seven days to process authenticated documents from the consular office, which SBI-CBT said, was contrary to Republic Act No. 9184 or the Government Procurement Reform Act’s revised rules, which stated that the conduct of post-qualification should have taken place within three calendar days.
“The lapse of time from April 17 to April 23 [representing 7 calendar days] is clearly giving ample time to Mosa-Inekon to cure and/or improve their eligibility and technical documents,” SBI-CBT said.