COMELEC bid out goods and services for the 2013 elections

from NAMFREL Election Monitor Vol.2, No.28
The Commission on Elections’ (Comelec) Special Bids and Awards Committee (SBAC) has conducted public bidding for a total of nine lots for the goods and services that will be employed or used for the 2013 elections. Following are the items that the Comelec has bid out for and the status of the procurement:

Warehouse lease with Configuration Facilities

The Comelec has conducted two bidding conferences for this service, and both failed. The first was held on July 23, 2012, where only one bidder, the joint venture of Bodega Site IT Solutions, Inc. and RV Marzan International Forwarders, Inc., submitted their offer, but was declared ineligible by the SBAC for insufficient documents. The budget for the project is Php 112,000,000.00.

The second bidding was held on August 29, 2012 with an increased budget of Php 400,000,000.00. The suppliers that participated in this bidding were the joint venture (JV) of Smartmatic-TIM Corp. and European Apparel Corp., and the JV of Storage Solutions Inc. (SSI) and Asa Color and Chemicals, Inc. The Smartmatic JV was declared ineligible also due to insufficient documents. The SSI JV was declared eligible during the bidding, but was disqualified during the post-qualification evaluation after the technical working group (TWG) of the Comelec-SBAC learned that the property in Cavite will be sub-leased by the joint venture. The SBAC specified in the bidding documents that subcontracting (or sub-leasing) is prohibited.

After the two failed bidding conferences, the SBAC will enter into negotiations with potential suppliers.

PCOS-related Consumables

1) Thermal paper – There were three companies that participated in the bidding. The first JV of SPH International Corp. and Advance Paper Corp. was initially declared as the lowest calculated bidder, but was postdisqualified after the TWG found out some insufficiencies in their technical requirements. The second lowest calculated bidder for thermal paper, Consolidated Paper Products, Inc. (CPPI), qualified for the project for complying with all the requirements by the SBAC. The approved budget for the project is Php 129,494,400.00. The third company was Smartmatic-TIM Corp. that was also declared eligible. However, their bid offer was higher than that of CPPI, hence the SBAC declared CPPI as the winning bidder.

2) Marking Pens – The JV of LDLA Marketing, DTM Prints and Labels Specialists, Inc. and Accent Micro Technologies; the JV of SPH International Corp. and Advance Paper Corp.; and Smartmatic-TIM Corp. were the prospective suppliers that participated in the bidding for marking pens. The LDLA JV failed in the bidding for insufficiency of documents required, resulting in the SBAC declaring the SPH JV as the winning bidder for this project. Comelec required 1,640,000 units of pens that will be used to mark the ballots in the 2013 polls, and the budget was pegged at Php 36,736,000.00. The winning bidder’s offer is Php 27,355,200.00.

3) CF Cards-Main and CF Cards WORM – In the first bidding for compact flash (CF) cards (the storage device for the counting machines), only the JV of LDLA submitted its bid offer. The JV was declared ineligible for failing to provide the statement of their single largest contract sworn with a notarial seal, thus the failure of the first bidding. In the second bidding, two suppliers participated. The first was the JV of LDLA, which passed the bid evaluation but was later on post-disqualified due to insufficiencies in their submitted requirements. The second bidder was Unison Computer Systems, Inc. but was later post-disqualified for “failure to comply with the technical specifications and with the authentication of certifications” (SBAC resolution no. 5, promulgated 12 November 2012). Since there were two failed bidding for the CF Cards, the SBAC is preparing to enter into negotiations with any supplier for this project.

Smartmatic-TIM did not participate in the bidding for CF cards claiming that the budget allotted by the Comelec for this project is insufficient. In the 2010 polls, some of the CF cards used with the counting machines were supplied to Smartmatic-TIM sourced from LDLA Marketing.

4) Toner – Comelec allotted Php 9,968,000.00 for 2,200 units of toner. Two companies submitted their bid offers for Comelec’s toner requirements. These companies are Optimal Systems Distributors, Inc., and Smartmatic- TIM Corp. The SBAC declared Optimal Systems as the winning bidder with their offer of Php 9,776,800.00, as Smartmatic’s offer was higher at Php 9,868,320.00

5) External Rechargeable Battery – For the external rechargeable batteries, three companies submitted their bid offer, they are: 1) the JV of Fumaco Inc. and Light Core Technologies Systems, Inc. (LCTSI); 2) Accent Micro Technologies, Inc.; and 3) Smartmatic-TIM Corp. The Fumaco JV was declared as the winning bidder, ‘Accent’ was declared ineligible for insufficient documents submitted, and Smartmatic’s offer was higher than Fumaco’s.

The Comelec's budget of Php 152,546,240.00 was allocated for its 82,000 unit requirement. Smartmatic’s offer was Php 147,896,630.57, while Fumaco’s offer was Php 137,760,000.00.

Provision for Electronic Results Transmission Services

Two bidding conferences were held for the electronic results transmission services (ERTS). The first bidding was held on August 28, 2012. The lone bidder, Blue Media Communications, Inc. was declared ineligible for documentary insufficiencies.

A second bidding was held on October 10, 2012, where no company submitted their proposal. Smartmatic-TIM Corp. on the same day submitted their letter addressed to the SBAC explaining the reason for their nonparticipation. In their letter, Smartmatic explained that the budget, amounting to Php 405,423,200.00, is not sufficient for the project considering the extent of the services required. After two failed bidding conferences, Comelec is preparing to enter into negotiations for the project.

Electronic Results Transmission Modems

Smartmatic-TIM Corp. and Mega Data Corporation submitted their bid offers for the project. Only Smartmatic was declared eligible as Mega Data failed to satisfy all the documentary requirements. The budget for the contract is Php 154,576,800.00. The Comelec will need 15,000 units for the 2013 elections.

For the other requirements such as the ballot papers for the 2013 elections, the Comelec has delegated the task of procuring ballot printing to the National Printing Office (NPO). The JV of Canon Marketing Philippines and Holy Family Printing Corp. won the bidding for the supply and printing of ballot papers. For the deployment of the ballots to the different precincts all over the country, a bidding conference is set on November 26, 2012 for ballot packaging.

Prior to these procurements, Comelec has engaged the services of Asa Color and Chemical Industries for the indelible ink that was used for the voters’ registration in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). The contract amount for the ink was Php 3,023,003.24