LRTA to submit corruption probe report by Monday

CALOOCAN CITY, Jan. 24 (PIA) -- The Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA) is set to submit an “initial report” to the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) on Monday, according to an official on Saturday.

During the Laging Handa public briefing hosted by the Presidential Communications Operations Office, LRTA Spokesperson Hernando Cabrera said the LRTA is investigating all its projects under the Procurement Service of the Department of Budget and Management (PS-DBM) two years after it began looking into the reported irregularities in the purchase of some of its equipment for the LRT 2.

Cabrera said Administrator Reynaldo Berroya has ordered the creation of a fact-finding committee that would investigate the agency’s whole procurement process under the PS-DBM.

“Kasi ang nag-procure ng lahat ng ito, actually gumamit kasi ‘yung sa pasilidad or tinatawag nating procurement service ng DBM para sila ang mamimili ng ating mga kaukulang equipment at lahat ito ay pinapa-imbestigahan ni Administrator Berroya,” he explained.

The official admitted that since they started the investigation in 2019, the LRTA only completed a report on the matter of the Rolling Stock Diagnostic Tools, but assured the public that the whole procurement process was being investigated.

He said the LRTA would submit its initial report to the PACC on Monday after its Chairman Dante Jimenez sent a subpoena to its office.

“We have been coordinating with the PACC. I personally went to PACC. I have brought a lot of documents to PACC. I have answered a lot of questions. Sabi ko nga, this coming Monday, I will be turning over a copy of our initial report. Full report na ito on one item, we will be fully coordinating with them,” Cabrera said.

The Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission had earlier said its investigation uncovered anomalies that warranted the filing of charges against LRTA officials and companies that took part in the bidding for the equipment.

The PACC said re-railing and rolling stock diagnostic equipment delivered for LRT 2 turned out to be different from the equipment approved by the Bids and Awards Committee of the DBM.

In one instance, a crate containing re-railing equipment had a sticker printout identifying it as having been shipped by the Chinese firm CRRC Corp., as ordered by the winning bidder Kempal Construction and Supply Corp. The crate, however, contained equipment from Bemco, an Indian company.

Evidence “indicates that the re-railing equipment did not come from CRRC but from Bemco,” the PACC said.

It said it appears that the signature in the LRTA Inspection and Acceptance Report was forged, facilitating the switch of equipment.

The PACC also highlighted irregularities in the purchase of escalators for the LRT 2 stations. The LRTA had ordered escalators with a required capacity of 9,000 persons per hour, but the escalators that were delivered can only accommodate 6,000 persons per hour. The escalators also broke down long before the expiration of the two-year warranty period. (PIA NCR)



Source: Philippines Information Agency (pia.gov.ph)

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