PCSO execs sued over Lotto equipment deal

Carolyn Bonquin, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 27 2016 03:09 PM

MANILA - The Anti-Trapo Movement (ATM) of the Philippines on Wednesday filed graft, breach of conduct and violation of the Government Procurement Reform Act complaints against former and current Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) top executives.

The complaint stemmed from the allegedly anomalous extension of the lease agreement for Lotto operations equipment without public bidding.

Named respondents were Erineo Maliksi, chairman of the board of directors; Margarita Juico, former PCSO chairman; Jose Ferdinand Rojas II, general members; and the members of the board of directors Florencio Noel, Mabel Mamba, Francisco Joaquin III, Conrado Zabella and other members of the Bids and Awards Committee.

The ATM alleged that PCSO gave undue favor to Philippine Gaming and Management Corporation (PGMC) and Pacific Online Systems Corporation (POSC) after extending and renewing their contracts for the lottery terminals in March 2015 and August 2015.

ATM chairman Leon Estrella Peralta said PCSO should have opened the contract for bidding upon expiration.

Other companies might have offered a lower amount for the same services from PGMC and POSC, she added.

"In extending these contracts, not exercising control and ownership upon the terminals or not exercising its right to purchase as the case may be, ATM aims to emphasize and repeat again that PCSO clearly violated (the anti-graft law), by committing such acts or omissions designed to make the procurement, by purchase or lease, process for the Lottery terminals manifestly and grossly disadvantageous to the Government whether or not the public officer profited," the complaint read.

"This, in turn, is economic sabotage. This if the contract was already amended and/or extended, the question is who amended and how was a grossly advantageous contract amended."

ABS-CBN is still waiting for the response from the PCSO officials, as of posting.