COMELEC to probe ₱91,000.00 overpriced & extravagance beds to Millions

People's tax for cases of Extravagance and Overpriced are NOT acceptable for Philippine Government Agencies.

Commission on Election (Comelec) chairman Sixto Brillantes promised to answer all allegations regarding overpriced beds and curtains procured early this year by the agency.

Brillantes said he will first order an investigation on the alleged overprice which Senate minority leader Alan Cayetano pointed out during the agency's initial budget hearing for 2013.  The Comelec's budget was set at 8.4-billion.

"We will have to check. I don't believe there is a bed worth 91,000.00. Nahigaan ko na yun," Brillantes said, adding he will look into the documents submitted by his regional director on the procurement. The items were procured for the Comelec rest house in Baguio City.

"The problem is I might have signed the check. But what I signed there is entire thing. I have to look into every detail. A probe is in the process if the allegations are true," Brillantes said. "I will answer all these when we return on August 30," the Comelec chairman said.

Senate finance committee Franklin Drilon said he will await for the Comelec chairman's response on the issue raised by Cayetano.

"They will have to explain that in the next hearing," Drilon said. "I didn't say it is a non-issue, it was not my issue. Yes, they have to explain that on August 30."

Earlier in the day, Cayetano confronted the Comelec chairman over the alleged show of extravagance of the agency following the purchase of about 4.3-million in beds, mattresses, curtains and blinds for the Comelec rest house in Baguio City.

Cayetano was alarmed over the price of a king size bed with mattress at 91,250 each and procurement of 340,552.35 worth of blinds and curtains pegged at 694,589.72 for the Comelec mansion in the summer capital of the Philippines.

"Dalawa kasi ang issue diyan: 'yung overpricing, meaning mas mahal siya sa dapat. 'Yung pangalawa, 'yung extravagance," Cayetano said after the Senate committee suspended the hearing for the Comelec budget.

"Right now, I'm not accusing them yet of overpricing. But I'm saying hingi sila nang hingi ng budget, 'yon pala, Camry pa ang sasakyan ng Chairman, tapos 'yung kama 91,000. Tingin ko, hindi naman tama," Cayetano said. "'Yung millions of pesos na para sa cottages lang nila, siguro 20-25 na classroom sana ang nagawa sa mga schools," the minority leader added.

Cayetano asked Brillantes over the issue during the initial deliberations of the agency's 8.4-billion at the Senate yesterday.

Documents showed by Cayetano revealed the Comelec awarded to Paula's Furniture the contract to supply and deliver 20 sets of double deck bed with mattresses at 15,840 each or a total of 316,800, one set of rectangular dining table with chars for 74,180, a set of round table with chairs for 78,000, three sets of reception table with chairs for a total of 59,500 and seven sets of king size bed with mattresses at 91,259 each for a total of 638,750.

There was also a purchase of 17 sets of queen size bed with mattresses for 84,600 or a total of 1.438-million, 30 pieces of accent chair with armrest worth 17,280 or 518,400 and three sets of living room showcase.

All the purchases for furniture reached a total of P3,350,210 while the total amount spent for blinds and curtains reached P1.035-million. Raddy's Construction and Supply, based in Pasig City, supplied the blinds and curtains.

Cayetano also asked Brillantes over the purchase of new service vehicles, which involved some 7.4-million and the Comelec chairman's use of three service vehicles.


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