CDRRMO clarifies mobile medical unit purchase PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 27 April 2016 14:25

The head of the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) on Monday publicly bared records and documents to prove that the purchase of the mobile medical unit followed due process and done within the bounds of law.

“This is to clear some issues being circulated [that are] not based on facts,” said Dr. Elmeir Apolinario, OIC City Administrator and concurrent chief of the CDRMO in light of the City Council’s non-approval of City Hall’s request to authorize the chief executive to open a letter of credit for the payment of the P37.89M mobile medical unit with the CDRRMO as end user.

Apolinario recounted that the purchase of the equipment started with two City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CDRRM) resolutions, the first one approved on March 30, 2015 for the utilization of available resources from the DRRM funds to purchase heavy equipment, rescue motor vehicles and or mobile medical clinic including accessories. The second resolution was approved July 10, 2015 revising and approving its budgetary program and ZCDRRM Fund Investment Plan for the year 2013 and 2014 respectively.

The CDRRMC resolution was forwarded to the City Council on Dec. 11, 2015 and subsequently approved on Dec. 15 through SP Resolution 1451 approving the ZCDRRM budgetary program and ZCDRRM Fund Investment Plan for 2013.

With the SP resolution, Apolinario said the CDRRMO started the procurement process foremost of which was the submission of purchase request [for a mobile medical unit] to the Bids and Awards Committee (BAC), which consequently took charge of pre-bid and bidding procures including the posting of the item in the Philippine Government Electronic Procurement System (PHILGEPS) on Feb. 23, 2016 with March 14, 2016 as date of bidding and bid amount of P37,890,000. “When it is posted in the PHILGEPS, it is open public bidding,” Apolinario pointed out.

The result of the public bidding showed that XJJ Industries, Inc., being the sole bidder, won the bid and was subsequently issued with the notice of award on March 22, 2016. The BAC resolution declaring SCRB and recommending approval of the same was formalized March 18.

With all the procedures complied, the next procedure, according to Apolinario was the requirement for the opening of a letter of credit and this requires a City Council authorization. “However, some councilors have another perception they thought we are asking for authority to purchase [the equipment]. No,  we are not, because the one [agency] asking authority [to purchase] from the mayor, is the CDRRMO.

The basis of the CDRRMO in requesting the mayor’s authority is pursuant to Administrative Order 12 series of 2011 [amending AO 233, s. 2008] of the Office of the President.    The mayor issued the authority for the CDRRMO to purchase one unit medical mobile clinic 4x4 on Jan. 14, 2016, Apolinario said.

“It is not the City Council that gives the authority to purchase [the equipment] to the end user but the mayor. The end user in this case is the CDRRMO. So we are not asking the [Council] authority to purchase but the authority for the opening of the LOC,”  Apolinario emphasized.

On the other hand, the CDRRMO chief likewise clarified that the contention of some councilors that there should have been proper coordination with the City Health Office in the purchase of the equipment was not an issue, as the city health officer is a member of the CDRRMC. His office, he said, has competent and experienced staff who can assess and validate the quality of the purchased equipment.

Apolinario stressed that the mobile medical unit “will not only accommodate multiple casualties and provided advanced life support in saving lives in times of disasters, but will also be convertible into a mobile command center.”

The mobile unit is a commercially built unit which could address patient needs and is conducive to medical responders using it. Its capabilities as a mobile medical clinic include MCI ambulance, mobile intensive care unit, surgical (public health),first aid station and digital imaging; disaster relief operations and command center/incident command post.

“We at the CDRRMO know that having the right equipment would make the difference between life and death. Equipment to be used when responding to disasters like health emergencies should be second to none,” Apolinario added. — Sheila Covarrubias