Senator Jinggoy Estrada requests special audit of DepEd’s ‘favored suppliers’

(INQUIRER) MANILA, Philippines — Senator Jinggoy Estrada sought the assistance of the Commission on Audit (COA) to look into the alleged favored suppliers of the Department of Education (DepEd).

In a letter addressed to COA chairperson Jose Calida, dated October 3 and shared to reporters on Tuesday, Ejercito requested for a special audit on DepEd’s suppliers.

“This is to request your good office for an audit inspection on the reported ‘Favored Suppliers’ in the Department of Education, including but not limited, to the following companies: Advance Solutions Inc. (ASI), Columbia Technologies, Inc., Reddot Imaging Philippines, Inc., Techguru Inc. and Girltekki Inc.,” the letter stated.

A copy of Senator Jinggoy Estrada’s letter to Commission on Audit chairperson Jose Calida, requesting for a special audit on the Department of Education’s alleged favored suppliers. (Photo courtesy of Estrada’s office)

In a Senate blue ribbon committee hearing on DepEd’s alleged overpriced procurement of laptops, Estrada noted that the companies regularly supply the agency’s laptop and information technology requirements.

DepEd Director Abram Abanil, however, defended that the mentioned firms had the lowest bids, so they got the contracts.

In another round of the panel hearing, Estrada said that ASI bagged almost P6 billion in government deals.

The blue ribbon committee’s investigation into  the DepEd laptop procurement came after COA flagged the agency for its expensive yet outdated laptops purchased through the Department of Budget and Management – Procurement Service. -Daniza Fernandez/ Inquirer