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Monthly Archives: September 2012

Public Bidding – ang panimula

Madalas na nating marinig ang katagang “public bidding” at ito ay madalas na ikinakabit sa anomalya kapag ginawa sa bakuran ng gobyerno. Madalas kasi ang sabwatan ng mga kawani ng gobyerno at ng mga pribadong kumpanya para sa iisang layunin – ang magkamal ng pera. Nakakalimutan na ang unang layunin ng mga programa at proyekto dahil sa personal na interes – at nawawala na ang serbisyo publiko. Sa mga naunang diskusyon sa RA.9184, binigyang-diin ang mga salitang INTEGRITY at PROCUREMENT PROFICIENCY. Ang pagtalaga ng may katangiang ito ang siyang unang hakbang sa pagtataguyod ng tunay na reporma sa procurement.

Bago pa mapunta kung saan ang usapan, unahin natin ang kahulugan at kahalagahan ng Public Bidding. Dalawang salita, “public” at bidding”. Mula sa masa, dahil sa masa at para sa masa. Ang “bidding” ay isang epektibong paraan para makuha ang pinakamababang halaga ng bilihin o pinakamataas na antas ng serbisyo. Para saan? Para ba sa gobyerno? Isang banda, oo. Pero dahil ang gobyerno ay nagsisilbi para sa taumbayan, walang ibang dapat na higit na makinabang kundi ang taumbayan. At dahil “public” ang “bidding” ito ay dapat ginawa ng may kahusayan at higit sa lahat, ginampanan ng may integridad. Dapat ay bukas sa lahat na concerned. Sabi nga “Public bidding is a public proceeding.” at “Public office is a public trust”.

Ang public bidding ay ang pangunahing katanggap-tanggap na paraan ng pag-procure. Walang itong limitasyon sa halaga. Ibig sabihin, mula isang sentimo hanggang sa bilyong transaksyon, ito ay maaaring gamitin. Subalit kung ang pag-procure natin ay may espesyal na kondisyon kung saan ang public bidding ay maaaring padaliin o pasimplehan, may itinakda ang batas para sa Alternative Methods of Procurement. Ito ay pag-uusapan natin sa hinaharap. Samantala, atin munang himayin ang detalye ng public bidding.

Bago magsimula ang public bidding kailangang ihanda muna ang mga dokumento para sa ahensya at para sa mga balak sumali dito. Ayon sa Section 17, ihahanda ng ahensya ang “bidding documents” sang-ayon sa standard forms at manuals na inilabas ng Government Procurement Policy Board o GPPB:

17.1. The Bidding Documents shall be prepared by the procuring entity following the standard forms and manuals prescribed by the GPPB. The Bidding Documents shall include the following:

  a) Approved Budget for the Contract;

  b) Invitation to Bid/Request for Expression of Interest;

  c) Eligibility Requirements;

  d) Instructions to Bidders, including scope of bid, documents comprising the bid, criteria for eligibility, bid evaluation methodology/criteria in accordance with the Act, and post-qualification, as well as the date, time and place of the prebid conference (where applicable), submission of bids and opening of bids;

  e) Terms of Reference (TOR), for consulting services;

  f) Scope of work, where applicable;

  g) Plans/Drawings and Technical Specifications;

  h) Form of Bid, Price Form, and List of Goods or Bill of Quantities;

  i) Delivery Time or Completion Schedule;

  j) Form, Amount, and Validity Period of Bid Security;

  k) Form, Amount, and Validity of Performance Security and Warranty; and

  l) Form of Contract and General and Special Conditions of Contract.

Ang mga specifications at iba pang terminolohiya sa bidding documents ay dapat tanggapin bilang minimum sakaling hindi malinaw ang pagkapaliwanag sa bidding documents.

Ang bidding documents ay maaaring i-post sa PhilGEPS at sa website ng ahensya simula sa unang araw ng pag-anunsyo. Dapat ay bigyan ng access ang mga nagnanais sumali hanggang sa deadline na itinakda bago tuluyang buksan ang mga bid. Di tulad ng nakaraang IRR (IRR-A), maaari na ngayong bigyan ng kopya ng bidding documents ang nagnanais sumali sa electronic format subalit kailangan nilang magbayad ng bidding documents fee upang matanggap ang aktwal na dokumento at bago lubusang tanggapin ng BAC ang kanilang bid. Ang halaga ng bidding documents ay ipinauubaya sa diskresyon ng ahensya. Dapat ay sapat lamang ito para mabawi ang mga gastusin sa paghahanda ng mga dokumento at development para sa procurement.

***

Q: Should the availability of bidding documents be constrained or limited to certain periods?

A: This was partly a gray area of concerned in the IRR-Abut was already addressed categorically by Section 17.3 of the Revised IRR:

17.3. To provide prospective bidders ample time to examine the Bidding Documents and to prepare their respective bids, the concerned BAC shall make the Bidding Documents for the contract to be bid available for the following period:

a)      For the procurement of goods and infrastructure projects, from the time the Invitation to Bid is first advertised/posted until the deadline for the submission and receipt of bids.

b)      For the procurement of consulting services, eligibility documents shall be made available from the time the Request for Expression of Interest is first advertised/posted until the deadline for the eligibility check, and the Bidding Documents, from the determination of the short list until the deadline for the submission and receipt of bids.

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Posted by on September 17, 2012 in BAC^k Issues

 

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Mga “Observers” ng Public Bidding

Matapos nating maipakilala ang komposisyon ng BAC, Secretariat at TWG, dumako naman tayo sa grupo na may katumbas na importansya sa procurement – ang mga observers o mga tagapagmatyag. Sabi sa Section 13, dalawa (2) ang observers na nararapat na imbitahan bukod sa Commission on Audit o COA (na regular na kasama sa pagmamatyag):

13.1. To enhance the transparency of the process, the BAC shall, in all stages of the procurement process, invite, in addition to the representative of the COA, at least two (2) observers, who shall not have the right to vote, to sit in its proceedings where:

a)      At least one (1) shall come from a duly recognized private group in a sector or discipline relevant to the procurement at hand, for example:

i) For infrastructure projects, national associations of constructors duly recognized by the Construction Industry Authority of the Philippines (CIAP), such as, but not limited to the following:

      (1) Philippine Constructors Association, Inc.;

      (2) National Constructors Association of the Philippines, Inc.; and

      (3) Philippine Institute of Civil Engineers (PICE).

ii) For goods, a specific relevant chamber-member of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

iii) For consulting services, a project-related professional organization accredited or duly recognized by the Professional Regulation Commission or the Supreme Court, such as, but not limited to:

       (1) PICE;

       (2) Philippine Institute of Certified Public Accountants (PICPA); and

       (3) Confederation of Filipino Consulting Organizations; and

b) The other observer shall come from a non-government organization (NGO).

Sang-ayon sa Section 13.2, kailangang rehistrado ang mga mapipiling observer (kung maliban sa mga nabanggit sa itaas) sa Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) o sa Cooperative Development Authority (CDA). Kailangan din na may sapat na kasanayan o expertise sa bagay o serbisyong ipo-procure. Subalit higit sa lahat, dapat ay walang personal na interes ang observer sa kontratang pinaglalaban o yung tinatawag na conflict of interest. Kung ang grupo ng observer ay kasali din sa bidding, hindi sila dapat payagan na umupo bilang observer.

Ang mga observers ay dapat na padalhan ng written notification na hindi iikli sa tatlong araw bago sumapit ang aktibidad sa procurement. Hindi kasali sa botohan ng desisyon ang mga observers at hindi mababalewala ang proceedings ng BAC sa kawalan ng observers.

***

Q: What are the responsibilities of the observers?

A: Under Section 13.4, the observers shall have the following responsibilities:

a)      To prepare the report either jointly or separately indicating their observations made on the procurement activities conducted by the BAC for submission to the Head of the Procuring Entity, copy furnished the BAC Chairman. The report shall assess the extent of the BAC’s compliance with the provisions of the IRR and areas of improvement in the BAC’s proceedings;

b)      To submit their report to the procuring entity and furnish a copy to the GPPB and Office of the Ombudsman/Resident Ombudsman. If no report is submittedby the observer, then it is understood that the bidding activity conducted by the BAC followed the correct procedure; and

c)      To immediately inhibit and notify in writing the procuring entity concerned of any actual or potential interest in the contract to be bid.

Observers shall be allowed access to the following documents upon their request, subject to signing of a confidentiality agreement: (a) minutes of BAC meetings; (b) abstract of Bids; (c) post-qualification summary report; (d) APP and related PPMP; and (e) opened proposals.

 
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Posted by on September 13, 2012 in BAC^k Issues

 

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BAC Technical Working Group (BAC-TWG)

Isa sa mga kapangyarihan ng BAC ay ang pagtatalaga ng Technical Working Group o TWG na tutulong sa pagbusisi sa mga kwalipikasyon ng bidder at ng bid nila. Ang pagbuo nito ay sangayon sa Section12.1:

12.1. The BAC shall have the following functions: … perform such other related functions as may be necessary, including the creation of a Technical Working Group (TWG) from a pool of technical, financial, and/or legal experts to assist in the procurement process, particularly in the eligibility screening, evaluation of bids, and post-qualification. (Underscoring supplied)

Kung nangangailang ng expertise ang BAC sa alinmang bahagi ng eligibility, bid evaluation at post qualification, maari silang bumuo ng TWG subalit kailangan na magmumula lamang ito sa “pool of technical, financial, and/or legal experts”. Ibig sabihin ng “pool… of experts”(hindi po “fool of experts” ha?) ay grupo o samahan ng mga eksperto. Maaari silang magmula hindi lamang sa regular na plantilla, kundi maging sa mga casual employees at maging sa mga contractual. Subalit upang makilala kung sino-sino sila, nararapat na maunang bumuo ang Mayor ng “pool…of experts” o katumbas nito upang pagpilian at pagkuhanan ng BAC.

Kapag hindi sapat ang kakayanan o komposisyon ng “pool of experts” ng ahensya, maaaring manggaling ito sa labas subalit priority muna ang mga eksperto ng ibang ahensya ng gobyerno. Kung walang makuha, ang pag-hire ng consultants upang maging TWG ay pinapayagan subalit kailangan wala silang conflict of interest sa proyekto o items na ibi-bid.

Anu-ano ba ang trabaho ng TWG? Depende ito sa expertise ng miyembro. Halimbawa, kung hindi malinaw ang specs ng bidder at hindi pamilyar ang BAC sa mga laman ng proposals ng bidder, maaaring isang TWG (senior architect, specialty engineer, IT expert) ang makakatulong. Kung kwestiyonable naman ang financial documents ng bidder, maaaring inspeksyunin ng TWG mula sa finance (senior accountant, finance specialist) ang mga papel kasama na ang pagbusisi sa mga Financial Statements nito. Kung hindi naman malinaw ang pagiging legal ng isang kumpanya na sasali sa bidding, maaaring sa komposisyon ng kasapi nito o may kinalaman ang batas na siyang bumuo dito, isang eksperto ng batas (abogado) ang tiyak na kakailanganin.

Ang TWG ay optional. Ibig sabihin, maaaring magtuloy ang transaksyon sa BAC kahit wala nito, taliwas sa nakasanayan at interpretasyon ng marami na indispensable ang TWG. Hindi tulad ng BAC at BAC Secretariat na mandatory sang-ayon sa probisyon ng batas, ang TWG ay ad-hoc o yung per-need basis lamang. Ganun pa man, kasama ang TWG sa professionalization ng procurement units (Section 16) kung meron ang ahensya:

“The GPPB shall establish a sustained training program to develop the capability of the BACs, BAC Secretariats, TWGs, and the Procurement Units of Procuring Entities, and professionalize the same.”

Dumako naman tayo sa tanungan portion:

Q: Can an inspector from the General Services Office be a member of TWG?[mbdr]

A: I don’t see any reason why that GSO inspector cannot be a member of the TWG. He has the technical expertise, I suppose. The only possible reason why he could not be designated as a TWG member could be conflict of interest, but that is best determined by the procuring entity itself. [RDV]

Source:http://gppb.topicsolutions.net/procurement-organizations-f23/can-an-inspector-from-the-gsd-be-a-member-of-the-twg-t479.htm

 
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Posted by on September 12, 2012 in BAC^k Issues

 

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Revised Penal Code: An Overview

Originally posted by Herald Digital Law Philippines in this link.

Act No. 3815, otherwise known as the Revised Penal Code, is the basic law that defines criminal offenses and provides the penalties for the commission of those offenses. The Revised Penal Code took effect on January 1, 1932, or more than a year after its approval on December 8, 1930.

The Revised Penal Code is divided in two books. The first book contains general provisions regarding criminal offenses, the persons liable and the imposition of penalties. On the other hand, the second book describes the acts that constitute criminal offenses and the penalties for the commission thereof. Crimes are grouped under the following categories:

(a) crimes against national security (e.g., treason and espionage);

(b) crimes against the fundamental laws of the state (e.g., arbitrary detention and crimes against religious worship);

(c) crimes against public order (e.g., rebellion and sedition);

(d) crimes against public interest (e.g., forgeries and fraud);

(e) crimes relating to prohibited drugs;

(f) crimes against public morals (e.g., gambling and betting);

(g) crimes committed by public officers (e.g., bribery and malversation of public funds);

(h) crimes against persons (e.g., murder and homicide);

(i) crimes against personal liberty and security (e.g., kidnapping , slavery and trespassing);

(j) crimes against property (e.g., robbery and theft);

(k) crimes against chastity (e.g., adultery and concubinage);

(l) crimes against the civil status of persons (e.g., simulation of birth and usurpation of civil status); crimes against honor (e.g., libel); and

(n) criminal negligence.

The Revised Penal Code replaced the old Penal Code, which was based on the Spanish Penal Code of 1870. A Spanish royal order in 1886 extended the application of the Spanish Penal Code (with some modification) to the Philippines. (see US vs. Tamparong, 31 Phil. 323).

 
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Posted by on September 11, 2012 in Criminal Law

 

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For the Love of Country

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Supreme sacrifice, what are thy cost?

Supreme sacrifice is an ideal state where in a person offer his life for some ultimate reasons. For there are no greater love (except for Divine love) than one’s love for the country. It has been expressed and exhibited by our heroes like Rizal and Bonifacio. The love of country knows no nationality, no color or race, and no language could better explain it than the actions of those undertaking it. At least this was the old-fashion concept of heroism.

There were several attempts from political figures to imitate it in any manner. Some were successful, but most were not. Some were sincere, but most were not. The appearance of being a true patriot is appealing. That is why politicians will always exert efforts so that people would believe they live to serve. But truth is? They serve to live, an extravagant life at the expense of the perishing poor.

Action speaks louder than voice. But how can we act if we are under suppression? That any action that would be adversarial to malicious interests of some public officials and employees would be fatal. Now we go back to the idea that “pen is mightier than the sword” whose author’s modern version is now “keyboard or keypad to the internet is more powerful than an inter-continental ballistic missile”. Social media is now life being shared knowingly or unknowingly. And at this modern age, the concept of sacrifice can be in the littlest of a blog. That when one still write his ideas despite the absence of ample time to do endless tasks is a form of sacrifice.

To me, the modern day supreme sacrifice no longer necessitates loss of one’s physical life. Losing one’s precious time is already tantamount to losing part of one’s life. Making people more aware that the are advocates and crusaders of right and justice despite the deprivation of their own is more than enough legacy to be left upon. And for one who upholds the Constitution, obey the laws of the land, and promote respect for law and legal processes, leaves these important phrases:

“For the love or country, not for the love of money.” In Filipino, “Para sa bayan, hindi para sa bayad”.

It may not be supreme, but it is one hell of of a concept.

 
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Posted by on September 6, 2012 in Personal

 

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Vagrancy no longer a penal offense

Herald Digital Law Philippines

Republic Act No. 10158 decriminalized vagrancy. Prior to its enactment, the Revised Penal Code stated:

ARTICLE 202.    Vagrants and prostitutes — Penalty. — The following are vagrants:

1.             Any person having no apparent means of subsistence, who has the physical ability to work and who neglects to apply himself or herself to some lawful calling;

2.             Any person found loitering about public or semi-public buildings or places or tramping or wandering about the country or the streets without visible means of support;

3.             Any idle or dissolute person who lodges in houses of ill fame; ruffians or pimps and those who habitually associate with prostitutes;

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Posted by on September 6, 2012 in Criminal Law

 

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Leadership and Servantship

It was never easy for a leader to lead the same way a servant to serve. This was the case for most of us, and now the same for the new Chief Justice Sereno.

A leader is one who leads a certain group of class or society. Most of the time, it is a question of why follow such leader? Who gave him or her the authority? Should a person in authority appointed by a leader whom we recognized be also recognized? What if I am not confident, in the same way trust and confidence is given by the appointing official to the appointee? How does a leader really become an effective one? Being a leader implies superiority. They are the elites of the society.

Meanwhile, a servant is one who serves a leader, voluntary or not. In most cases, (Filipino) people are not fond of admitting to be servants. We have been that for the past four centuries with the Spanish era. We believe in liberty and we even shed blood to achieve independence from any form of tyranny or oppression. We do not want to be dictated. We believe we are always better than the other. We often ask, “why him” or “why her?” Being a servant implies inferiority. They are the poor.

How about servant-leaders? This third and hybrid class is the hardest to assume of the three. They are people neither accepted nor rejected. Neither inferior nor superior. They are in-between, but never the average. Unlike the first two, a servant-leader is a choice. It is never a status born with a person and never by fate. It is tantamount to living and leading thru example.

In the well celebrated case of Justice Sereno, appointed as the first lady Chief Justice, it is a real challenge how to persuade senior Justices to follow her leadership. But this should not be the focal point of her acceptability for being a servant-leader is intended to the public, not to her peers. The Chief Justice owes her loyalty to the Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines and not to any person. So she has to be strong, as people expect her to be. She speaks of change where many are thirsty of it. And the likewise thirsty author supports her leadership, with the hope of one day, he will be taking oath before the Supreme Court, whose dignity, confidence and respect have been restored – and to join as one of the selfless servant-leaders of the country.

Again, servant-leaders are neither born nor appointed. They are chosen.

 
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Posted by on September 4, 2012 in Personal

 

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