By Malou Mangahas
and Karol Ilagan
Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism .
(Last of five parts)
Among other things, PCIJ had gone on field to take a look at a project that was supposed to be at 0.22 percent accomplishment rate as of April 30, 2018: the P24.8-million rehabilitation/reconstruction of the Mabuhay-Pañalum-Paquibato Road with slips slope and landslide” in Davao City. The project, which on paper was to be implemented by Las Piñas-based Three W Builders Inc., was supposed to have started on May 4, 2017 and completed by Oct. 21, 2017. Three W is a Triple-A contractor.
PCIJ failed to locate the project but instead found another Three W project: the P44.8-million “construction of slope protection along Lasang River, Paquibato Proper Section, Davao City.” The actual work for the project, however, was being done by Genesis 88 Construction Inc., an A-licensed construction firm owned by Escandor. The project engineer, the payroll request form, and the backhoe at the project site were all from Genesis 88. No Three W Builders employee was on site
As of this writing, Genesis 88 and Three W Builders have yet to respond to letters sent by PCIJ despite multiple follow-up calls made to each of their staff personnel.
Procurement rules allow subcontracting under certain circumstances only. A contractor like Three W may subcontract portions of the works, provided that it will undertake, using its own resources, not less than 50 percent of the contract works in terms of cost. At the same time, subcontractor is supposed to subcontract not more than half of the work. Moreover, it should be a PCAB-licensed contractor with Net Financing Contracting Capacity, which is computed based on its net worth as submitted to the Bureau of Internal Revenue and the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Prior approval of the head of the procuring entity — in this case the Davao City 1st District Engineering Office — is required as well before subcontracting is allowed. But District Engineer Wilfredo Aguilar and Assistant District Engineer Milagros de los Reyes of Davao City said that no application for subcontracting has been processed by their office. They said, though, that it is possible that Genesis 88 may have rented its equipment to Three W or Three W hired Genesis 88’s employees for the project.