Philippine Standard Time:

FORMER and current members of the bids and awards committee (BAC) of the National Printing Office (NPO) were asked to appear before the National Bureau of Investigation on Monday to shed light on the controversial printing jobs for the Social Security System (SSS) amounting to P74 million.

Among those issued with a subpoena were former members of the NPO-BAC namely Sherwin Prose Castaneda. Ma. Cristina Morales, Michelle Japson, Benedict Sagun, Amado Valsorable; BAC Secretariat members Teres Tobias, Dina Badua, Winon Balmores, Wilma Delansig, Federico Israel Ramos III and Jennifer Tomas.

The subpoena, signed by NBI Deputy Director for Intelligence Vicente de Guzman, also asked Engineer Rolando Calauag, officer in charge of the NPO, to attend the investigation.

Earlier, de Guzman confirmed that they have started their investigation on how the P74 million contract was awarded to Best Forms Security Printer, Tri-Print Work at Metro Color Company.

The contract was first awarded to Western Visayas Printing Corporation.

The issue was investigated by the Presidential Communications Operations Office as directed by Secretary Martin Andanar.

Undersecretary for Legal Affairs Enrique Tandan 3rd referred the matter to the NBI for further investigation and possible filing of criminal complaints.

Malacañang’s investigation revealed that there is sufficient basis to believe that criminal and administrative offenses were committed by those involved.

“The investigation uncovered several irregularities and violations of, among other, the Procurement Reform Act (Republic Act 9184) and the Anti-Corrupt Practices Act (RA 3019),” said Tandan. FRANCIS EARL CUETO