No public bidding for P10.4M drugs

The good news is that government is supplying the public hospital with millions for medicine of poor patients at NOPH. The bad part is, on many occasions, the purchase was done without bidding —like the rasu motto “sabot sabot lang.”

State auditors took to task members of the Bids and Awards Committee for failing to conduct bidding for drugs and medicine amounting to P10, 418, 949.75, which they opined deprived the provincial government with the most advantageous prices inconsistent with the Government Procurement Reform Act (RA 9184).

The drugs and medicine were used during outreach program/ medical mission and were procured from January 1, 2015 to June 30, 2015 through small value procurement at very close interval.

Iannie O. Bulos, COA Audit Team Leader, said that the province could have availed of much lower prices including possible discounts on bulk purchases had public bidding been conducted allowing more suppliers to compete in the process.

In his reply, the BAC Chairman said that the change in alternative mode was covered by a resolution and the procurement was made as the need arises, however he assured that corrective measures are being implemented to prevent it from happening again.

Meanwhile, COA also asked the provincial government to discontinue the practice of advance deliveries of drugs and impose sanctions to those who continue to defy the rules.

COA learned that drugs and medicine amounting to P1, 206, 963.32 were delivered in advance prior to the preparation and approval of the purchase orders thus transparency and competitiveness of the procurement process were seriously disregarded as this was replaced by the so-called suki system.

Auditors questioned members of the BAC for making a farce out of the procurement process by passing resolutions supposedly identifying the alternative mode of procurement as shopping or small value procurement when in fact they were aware that a supplier had already delivered the goods in advance because the end-users submitted letters addressed to the BAC Secretary informing him of the same and for preparing Purchase Orders after delivery of the items.

The BAC Chairman assured COA that an advisory has been issued to all offices and hospitals to strictly observe and to stop the practices inconsistent with R.A. 9184.

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