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Senate panel says DepEd laptops are overpriced by PHP 979M, 8 officials involved will be charged with graft

The Senate anti-graft panel concludes that the laptops procured by DepEd are overpriced by PHP 979.
Senate panel says DepEd laptops are overpriced by PHP 979M, 8 officials involved will be charged with graft
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Procured DepEd laptops are overpriced by PHP 979M!

To recall, the Department of Education was in a hot seat after it was revealed that they purchased outdated laptops at a ridiculous price. The said laptops have a spec of Intel Celeron but were priced at over PHP 50K instead of the supposedly much lower price based on the auditor's report and they are done through the PS-DBM procurement services.

Now the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee made a report stating that based on their findings, along with COA's suggestions says that the overpricing totaled an amount of PHP 979 million for the procurement of 39,000 laptops back in 2021 (Pandemic era). 

These outdated laptops are supposed to be operated by public school teachers so they can perform online classes for their students when there are different quarantine measures are being imposed by the Government at that time.

There is sufficient basis to believe that there was a conspiracy to facilitate and/or generate an overprice which indicates manifest partiality, evident bad faith, and/or gross inexcusable neglect on the part of senior officials and staff of the DepEd and PS-DBM, said by Senate's report.

Senator Francis Tolentino, as the chair of the committee, said that Sandiganbayan should provide advice with regards to how to collect the lost PHP 979 million from DepEd and the PS-DBM that served as the procuring agent.

The Blue Ribbon Commitee continued that they are recommending that the 8 officials involved shall have administrative and graft charges filed against them.

Below is the list of officials involved in the irregularities:


USEC for Finance - Analyn Sevilla
Former USEC - Alain Del Pascua
Former ASEC - Salvador Malana III
Director for IT service - Abram Abanil


Former Chief - Lloyd Christoper Lao 
Former OIC Executive Director - Jaysonmer Uayan
Bid and Award Commitee - Ulysses Mora
Engineer - Marwan Amil

There are also other members of the Special Bids and Awards committee and technical working group and Secretariat from DepEd or PS-DBM that will be filed with charges as well.

Meanwhile, the panel absolves former DepEd secretary Leonor Briones as they said she is just being "used" in the said heated issue.

The chairman of the committee clarified that the decision is based on evidence and that there was no legal liability for the former secretary. You may view the Senate's press release on this link.

What do you guys think?

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