2010 glitches not considered in awarding Smartmatic flash card contract

  • Pacmania sweeps Philippines ahead of Mayweather clash

    Pacmania sweeps Philippines ahead of Mayweather clash

    AFP News
    Pacmania sweeps Philippines ahead of Mayweather clash

    Manny Pacquiao's face is on shirts, dolls and postage stamps, his life story is playing in movie houses and millions are getting ready to party as the Philippine boxing hero's "fight of the century" nears. Pacmania is sweeping the Southeast Asian nation of 100 million people ahead of the May 2 Las Vegas bout against unbeaten Floyd Mayweather to decide who is the best boxer of their generation. Of course, it's the fight of the century," Manila film producer Lucky Blanco told AFP. …

  • Philippines voices China alarm as US war games begin

    Philippines voices China alarm as US war games begin

    AFP News
    Philippines voices China alarm as US war games begin

    The Philippines voiced alarm Monday about Chinese "aggressiveness" in disputed regional waters as it launched giant war games with the United States that were partly aimed as a warning shot to Beijing. Philippine military chief General Gregorio Catapang released what he said were satellite photos of intense recent Chinese construction over seven reefs and shoals in the Spratly archipelago of the flashpoint South China Sea. "We have compelling reasons to raise our voice to tell the whole world …

  • US, Philippines start combat drills amid Chinese reclamation

    US, Philippines start combat drills amid Chinese reclamation

    Associated Press
    US, Philippines start combat drills amid Chinese reclamation

    MANILA, Philippines (AP) — More than 11,500 American and Filipino military personnel launched one of their largest annual combat exercises Monday amid growing alarm over massive land reclamation by China in disputed South China Sea territories. …

  • Three dead as wild weather lashes Sydney region

    Three dead as wild weather lashes Sydney region

    AFP News
    Three dead as wild weather lashes Sydney region

    Three people died as Sydney and surrounding areas were lashed by wild weather on Tuesday with trees felled, power cuts hitting thousands of homes and sand drifts sweeping inland off the iconic Bondi beach. Sea swells also hampered shipping as the region around Australia's biggest city suffered its second day of gale-force winds of up to 135 kilometres per hour (83 mph) and torrential rain. The Bureau of Meteorology said 119 millimetres (five inches) of rain had fallen in Sydney in 24 hours -- …

  • China to approve new foreign fund managers for QDLP scheme

    Reuters

    Five foreign fund and private equity managers are set to gain approvals to enter a pilot scheme aimed at opening China to the $2 trillion-plus global hedge fund industry. The firms, which include UBS Global Asset Management and Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management, received the go-ahead in February to establish local firms to raise yuan from wealthy and institutional investors to spend on alternative assets overseas, said sources with direct knowledge of the matter. Nomura Asset Management, EJF …

By Mikha Flores, VERA Files

When the Commission on Elections awarded Smartmatic the contract to supply compact flash (CF) Cards for the coming May elections, it did not consider the technical glitches in 2010 that nearly botched the first nationwide automated elections.

Lawyer Helen Aguila-Flores, chairperson of the Special Bids and Awards Committee (SBAC), said Thursday the poll body only “looked into the sample they submitted” during the testing of the CF cards last November.

Smartmatic recalled 76,000 CF cards nationwide five days before the 2010 elections after the Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machines encountered problems in the configuration. The error was blamed on the improper spacing of the in the ballot face bearing the names of local candidates.

"We cannot blur our minds on incidents of the past," Flores said, referring to the glitches that marred the 2010 elections.

Comelec awarded the supply of CF cards Main on Dec. 27 through negotiated procurement.

According to RA 9184 or the Government Procurement Reform Act, negotiated procurement occurs when two successive public biddings have failed. It is also allowed during emergencies like a state of calamity, takeover of contracts and when the contract is related to an ongoing infrastructure project.

SBAC first declared a bidding failure on Aug. 13 after lone bidder LDLA Marketing was found ineligible. The second bidding also failed due to the post-isqualification of LDLA and Unison Computer System Inc.

During the negotiation stage, Flores said only Smartmatic passed the testing done by the SBAC Technical Working Group.

She said Smartmatic’s CF cards “are the only samples that did not have any negative observation” from the Technical Working Group. “The others would require tweezers or something to pull to eject the CF card from the port,” the SBAC head said.

Three groups were shortlisted during the negotiated procurement stage: Smartmatic, SPH International Corp. and LDLA Marketing.

Both the flash cards provided by SPH and LDLA were found defective after the samples they provided were difficult to eject from the PCOS machines.

Smartmatic initially submitted a bid of P50.96 million which was higher than the approved budget for the contract (ABC) of P46.58 million. Comelec eventually awarded the contract to Smartmatic after it sent lowered the amount to P45.21 million.

According to the Procurement Law, “the ABC shall be the upper limit or ceiling for the Bid prices. Bid prices that exceed this ceiling shall be disqualified outright from further participating in the bidding.”

(VERA Files is published by veteran Filipino journalists taking a deeper look into current Philippine issues. Vera is Latin for “true.”)

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Pacmania sweeps Philippines ahead of Mayweather clash
    Pacmania sweeps Philippines ahead of Mayweather clash

    Manny Pacquiao's face is on shirts, dolls and postage stamps, his life story is playing in movie houses and millions are getting ready to party as the Philippine boxing hero's "fight of the century" nears. Pacmania is sweeping the Southeast Asian nation of 100 million people ahead of the May 2 Las Vegas bout against unbeaten Floyd Mayweather to decide who is the best boxer of their generation. Of course, it's the fight of the century," Manila film producer Lucky Blanco told AFP. …

  • Ex-Cavite governor gets PCSO top post
    Ex-Cavite governor gets PCSO top post

    After nearly a year, President Aquino finally made good his promise to a long-time ally – former Cavite governor and congressman Erineo Maliksi – to head the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO), replacing Margarita Juico who resigned in May 2014. Maliksi must be officially elected by the PCSO board members as their chairman. Prior to his appointment to the PCSO, Maliksi faced graft charges before the Sandiganbayan in connection with the alleged illegal purchase of P2.5 million worth …

  • US, Phl military exercises to focus on sea defense
    US, Phl military exercises to focus on sea defense

    A massive deployment of aircraft, personnel and warships characterizes this year’s Balikatan between the two allies, which war games were launched 30 years ago. Commander Lued Lincuna, Philippine Navy public affairs chief, said the Marine Battalion Landing Team-4 (MBLT-4) will link  up with the US 3rd Marine Expeditionary Force. …

POLL
Loading...
Poll Choice Options