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CoA flags PNP purchase of P1.89-B patrol cars

The Commission on Audit has flagged the purchase by the Philippine National Police of some P1.89-billion worth of patrol vehicles manufactured by an Indian car manufacturer in 2015.

In its 2017 annual audit report, CoA raised various questions about the acquisition of the vehicles as it noted that changes in the specifications of the type and make of the vehicles resulted in the PNP ordering inferior standard patrol vehicles than what was originally recommended.

In the same audit report, the State audit agency also observed that the PNP scholarship program for children of policemen, firemen, and jail guards killed in the line of duty has not been “fairly and equitably” implemented.

While CoA lauded the scholarship program that included children of martyrs of the Mamasapano and Marawi City bloodbath among the beneficiaries, auditors noted that lack of uniform policy guidelines for implementation spoiled the charitable objective of the program.

In its audit observation on the acquisition of some 1,900 Mahindra vehicles in 2015, CoA noted that the lack of “operational needs assessment pushed back the full attainment of the objectives of the Capability Enhancement Program of the PNP.”

State auditors chided the PNP for recommending to the National Police Commission the type and make of vehicle to be purchased, saying that the agency made “unsound changes in the minimum standard specifications and in effect, resulted in the purchase of vehicles that have been bothered with “frequent breakdowns, poor after sales services, and limited availability of spare parts.”

The PNP purchased 1,656 Mahindra Enforcers worth P1.543 billion and 398 Mahindra Scorpio Light Transport Vehicles worth P349.44 million in 2015. The first batch of Mahindra Enforcers wee delivered ahead of the Scorpio. Both batch purchases were made with the Columbia Autocar Corp.

The 2,054 patrol vehicles were intended for distribution to all PNP units throughout the country for their anti-crime responses, disaster relief and rescue operations, and patrol. (Ben R. Rosario)