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Aquino suspects overpricing in gun deal, suggests PNP chief to replace Puno

Discussion in 'Band of Glockers' started by jprj, Sep 10, 2012.

  1. jprj


    Aug 5, 2001

    (Updated 7:40 a.m., Sept. 10) - President Benigno Aquino III is eyeing Philippine National Police chief Director General Nicanor Bartolome to replace controversial Rico Puno as undersecretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government.

    “I actually asked Director General Bartolome also to consider resign earlier. He will be given a different position… He might replace si Usec. Puno,” Aquino said on Sunday on the sidelines of the the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Russia.

    President Aquino asserted that, after researching on the Internet, he suspected that the guns the government wanted to purchase for the PNP were overpriced, a deal which Puno was supposedly “knowledgeable” about.

    Aquino had asked the late Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo to investigate why only a few bidders ended up vying for the contract for the PNP rifles.

    “Bakit naging iba? Bakit nawala ’yung ibang bidders? Bakit pati ’yung pito na kumuha ng bid documents biglang umatras? Bakit ’yung presyo hindi kaalinsunod nung (dapat)?” Aquino said during the press conference.

    He added that he also gave instructions to check if the weapons were overpriced, since he himself checked for rifle prices using the Internet.

    Aquino likewise said that he was surprised to learn that the purchase reached post-evaluation stage, when he already gave an order for the process to be stopped.

    “Pinatanong ko nga, 'Bakit nagkakaroon ng testing kung ang utos sa inyo ay ihinto?' Lahat ng involved doon, medyo floating muna lalo na ‘yung uniformed personnel,” he said.

    The President further said that Puno knew about the arms deal, although Aquino maintained that he still trusts the DILG undersecretary.

    “He [Puno] is my eyes and ears. Gusto kong ma-evaluate doon kung gaano ba ka-diligent siya doon sa pagmi-meet ng mga utos,” Aquino said.

    Yet at the same briefing to Filipino reporters traveling with him to Russia, Aquino said he is considering replacing Puno with PNP chief Bartolome.

    Bartolome was named PNP chief in September last year. He is set to retire in March next year.

    Aquino, however, said that he wants Bartolome to turn over the police force’s top post to another official even earlier than March to give the next PNP chief the time to prepare for the May 2013 midterm elections.

    PNP chief 'surprised'

    Bartolome was surprised over reports Aquino may appoint him DILG undersecretary to replace Puno.

    But Bartolome declined to comment further as he said his concentration now is on preparations for the 2013 elections, radio dzBB’s Tuesday Niu reported Sunday.

    The President however clarified that Puno, his controversial shooting buddy, has not yet resigned as Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) undersecretary.

    Puno is presently DILG undersecretary for peace and order. The other undersecretary, Austere Panadero, is undersecretary for local government.

    Aquino ordered Puno to secure Robredo files

    On Saturday evening, Aquino told reporters covering him at the APEC summit in Russia that he had ordered Puno to secure the office of then-missing Robredo, a day after his plane crashed in the sea off Masbate.

    Previous reports indicated Robredo may have been keeping confidential files on procurement cases that could have involved Puno.

    Aquino added that what was actually under investigation was the process of procurement of 9mm-caliber guns, and not Puno himself, asserting that a person is innocent unless proven guilty.

    A day after the plane crash on Aug. 18 – and with Robredo still missing – Puno and several accompanying police officers tried to enter the DILG secretary’s condominium unit along Tomas Morato Avenue in Quezon City.

    According to one of the accompanying policemen, P/Sr. Superintendent Oliver Tanseco, Puno received instructions from Aquino to place Robredo’s residence and offices under “lockdown.”

    However, the building’s personnel refused Puno and the policemen entry beyond the building’s lobby. Puno and his party did not try to force the issue. — LBG/AC/ELR/HS, GMA
  2. norman9X


    Jul 18, 2011
    Galil yata ni Espinelli ang tinutukoy dito. Not sure kung SBR yung isa pero nakalagay sa specs 16 inch yung isang version. Sayang, mukhang minaneobra ni Puno yung bidding process para SAF at lalabas na may kumita sa deal kasi ang mahal per unit.

  3. Allegra


    Mar 16, 2003
    re puno
    Mahirap maniwala what those tabloids posing as broadsheets are saying
    Newspapers need conflict ( scandal,gyera,away,etc) to sell
    Could be true ,could be misinfo or could be BS
  4. It was also reported that the specs were changed by the committee from AR to AK. The Galil as sourced from Espinelli is an AK derivative.

    For our American bros, this is what happens when we get a President who is also a shooter.
  5. norman9X


    Jul 18, 2011
    Tingin ko nahuli si Puno dito sa deal na 'to, akala makakalusot kasi for SAF procurement lang kaya konti lang unlike sa pistol na mass order. Kung iniimbestigahan na ni Robredo ibig sabihin nakarating na sa level nya yung questionable order. Nasa kanila na yun kung mapapatunayan na dumaan sa matinong proseso yung bidding ng HPR for SAF.

    Kahit naman sa US may anumalya din sa pag procure ng military hardware and weapons. Syempre yung natalong bidder magpo protesta kesyo di pumasa sa requirements ganito ganyan.
  6. Allegra


    Mar 16, 2003
    while I do not know if Puno is guilty or not
    I'm fascinated jan sa media
    Anytime they report something , I just assume the oppsite

    By Conrado de Quiros
    Philippine Daily InquirerAm I sympathetic to Rico E. Puno’s cause?

    No. I do not particularly care about guns and am scandalized that government should make buying them more of a priority than raising the salaries and benefits of public school teachers. Putting modern weapons in the hands of the police does not fill me with a sense of security, it fills me with a sense of dread.

    Is he guilty?


    That is the mind-boggling thing. Like Kafka’s character in “The Trial,” Puno has been found guilty without having been charged. Like Kafka’s character in “The Trial,” Puno has been found guilty without having been tried. This is one ghastly classic lesson in how to bury someone under a pile of innuendoes in lieu of rubble.

    The entire case against him seems formidable until you examine it part by part. Then it turns out to be a house of cards.

    All it rests on is this: Puno went to Robredo’s condo unit where he was denied entry by Robredo’s maid. Therefore he had something to hide. Therefore he was looking for documents that incriminated him. Therefore he is guilty of something. ABS-CBN broke the story, and this was its gist.

    It would be amplified later by these: Ricky Carandang, Edwin Lacierda, and Abigail Valte would repeatedly say P-Noy ordered Puno to lock down Robredo’s things but he never ordered him to go to Robredo’s house. Therefore he exceeded his mandate. Therefore his actions were suspicious. Later, Leila de Lima would secure Robredo’s unit, apparently at the behest of Jesse’s widow, Leni. Therefore this was done to counter Puno’s unwarranted, and unwanted, intrusion. Therefore Puno is truly guilty.

    What in fact happened?

    After Robredo’s plane crashed, P-Noy ordered Puno to secure all of Robredo’s documents as they were extremely sensitive, and gambling lords in particular would be eager to get their hands on them. Puno complied. Going by the book, he brought along a group led by Supt. Oliver Tanseco. Tanseco is Robredo’s deputy chief of internal security and one of his trusted aides. They went to Jesse’s office, took pictures, and sealed it. Puno then reported it to the President.

    That same night, Tanseco remembered that there were other documents in Robredo’s condo unit and called up Puno to propose that they secure it too. That call was witnessed by officials who, for reasons of their own, kept mum about it while Puno was being pilloried for stepping out of bounds but who now confess to it. The following day, Puno and Tanseco went over to Robredo’s house. They were never denied entry by the maid simply because there was no maid. In fact, there was no one inside. Puno himself remained in the lobby while his team took pictures of the unit from the outside. They never entered the unit. All in all, they spent 20 minutes there and left.

    Later, P-Noy also ordered De Lima to go to Robredo’s condo unit and inventory his things. De Lima informed Puno about it, they met at the unit, and exchanged notes. And then they left.

    It’s a cautionary tale: There’s nothing so innocent you can’t give it a malicious spin.

    From there the story flew off, with no small help from people who gave it wings. Suddenly, there was an unnamed DILG official who swore that at the time of his death Robredo was investigating anomalies in arms procurement. This was apparently the first time a DILG head did this, which gave it weight. The anomaly must have been huge.

    Who was in charge of arms procurement? Puno. Therefore he really had something to hide.

    In fact, was Robredo investigating anything? We do not know, he is not around to shed light on things. What we do know is that his widow says she is not aware of it, or even less or her husband investigating Puno. What we do know is that P-Noy says he himself discovered the seemingly higher prices of the firearms the Department of the Interior and Local Government was buying and asked Robredo to look into it. He says he never attributed any wrongdoing to it, certainly not by Puno. He says he was satisfied by how it was explained.

    For all the good this has done. On the strength of the unnamed DILG source, it has become established fact: Robredo was investigating, and he was investigating Puno. Who is this unnamed official and why does he prefer to be unnamed? We do not know. We only know that he is not pandak, maitim, and maligno.

    What specifically was Robredo investigating? The P1.2-billion contract in new pistols for the Philippine National Police. How do we know this? We know this from the fact that Puno signed it on the very day Mar Roxas was appointed DILG chief. Therefore it was a midnight deal. Therefore it was hugely anomalous.

    In fact someone has yet to show which part of the bidding process was not transparent, was irregular, and is disadvantageous to the country. The only thing that seems strange is the timing of the signing of the contract and Roxas’ entry to the DILG. But that is so only because the entire process from the initial bidding to the final signing went according to schedule. The contract was supposed to be signed by the end of August. Who could have known Robredo would die and be succeeded by Roxas at about that time?

    Which brings us to how you can phrase a “fact” to twist its meaning grotesquely. You say, “The contract was signed on the very day Roxas was appointed DILG secretary,” that sounds sinister. You say, “Roxas was appointed on the very day the contract was signed,” that’s just fortuitous. A lesson again on how nothing is so innocent you can’t put malice into it.

    There’s more, but I’ll leave that for another day as an object lesson in iniquity. Suffice it to say here that you don’t like Puno, that’s fine. You think he should be out of the DILG, that’s fine. You think he violates your sense of aesthetics, that’s fine too. But you say he’s guilty of all this? That’s foul.

    That’s, well, Kafkaesque.
  7. Chie


    Jul 1, 2005
    Is it not possible that our government purchase the arms directly from manufacturers in order to get the best deal and cut the middle men out?
  8. Allegra


    Mar 16, 2003
    Kung sino yata mag submit ng bid , sila ang ka deal ng gobyerno
    I guess gaston couldnt be bothered :)

    Read sa pinoyguns that rico puno owns twin pines? this is news to me
    Is this true?
    group buy ng czech ak! hehe
  9. jprj


    Aug 5, 2001

    Senate Inquiry Into PNP Arms Purchase ‘Exhaustive’ Enough
    September 15, 2012, 8:25pm
    MANILA, Philippines --- The House of Representatives will not pursue its investigation of the P1-billion deal involving the purchase of 60,000 handguns for the Philippine National Police (PNP).

    The supposedly questionable contract is one of the controversies being linked to former Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Undersecretary Rico Puno.

    Agham party-list Rep. Angelo Palmones said yesterday the House Committee on Public Order and Safety of Cebu Rep. Pablo John Garcia has decided not to look into the issue because the Senate has already conducted an “exhaustive” inquiry.

    “I was asked by Rep. Garcia if I have other questions apart from those that were raised during the Senate hearing. We agreed that the Senate was able to discuss the issue thoroughly. All questions were already raised so we decided not to pursue the investigation,” Palmones said in a phone interview.

    Palmones, along with Antipolo Rep. Romeo Acop filed House Resolution 2598, had called on the Garcia committee to conduct an inquiry on the procurement of the pistols “for purposes of good governance, transparency and accountability.”

    They said the bidding process for the purchase was not completed, and that some bidders have not complied with eligibility requirements and or submitted the necessary documents to qualify for the bidding.

    Palmones said they were “satisfied” with the Senate inquiry.

    “Anyway, if there are complaints from the losing bidders, they can go to courts,” he said.

    A day before the Senate investigation, the PNP assured that the deal is “aboveboard.” It also cleared Puno of involvement in the purchase.

    Deputy Director General Emelito Sarmiento, deputy chief for operations and Bids and Awards Committee (BAC) chairman, said the procurement of the 9mm Glock pistols is consistent with bidding procedures under the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) of Republic Act No. 9184.

    He even said Puno was not in any way involved in the procurement of the pistols, which are expected to be delivered five months after PNP Director General Nicanor Bartolome signs the contract on or before Sept. 25.

    Sarmiento said they started the “video-taped” BAC proceedings last March 16, and clarified that the procurement of 60,000 pistols was not related to the 28,000 pistols which arrived in the Manila South Harbor on Sept. 4.

    The first delivery of 12,000 guns will start in 150 days upon the issuance of notice and will be completed after 570 days.

    Sarmiento proposed that Congress enact a law imposing penalties on losing bidders who try to mess up government deals.

    Last Friday, Puno went before the Senate committee headed by Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago to deny he had used his influence to see to it that the contract for the pistols went to certain bidders.

    Santiago had summoned several other Cabinet members to the hearing, but only Puno and Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Nicanor Bartolome showed up.

    Among those who snubbed the hearing were Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr. and Justice Secretary Leila de Lima.

    The senator took the absence of the other Cabinet officials as an affront and said she and President Benigno S. Aquino III have ceased to be “friends.”

    Yesterday, Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said the President did not take Santiago’s remarks personally.

    “We have a lot of lawmakers who are vocal in their opinions,” Valte said. “It doesn’t mean it’s a personal attack on the President.”

    Valte said Santiago must be kidding when she said she’s no longer friends with Malacanang.

    Valte also assured Santiago that the Palace continues to look for ways to eliminate “jueteng.”

    “It cannot be an isolated approach. It has to be a holistic approach to it,” she said.

    The President wants a comprehensive anti-jueteng plan, she added. (Additional report from Madel R. Sabater)
  10. Allegra


    Mar 16, 2003
    power play between Pnoy's boys
    abs-cbn w/ one group ( obvious w/c one )
    de quiros on the other? :)
    There’s the Rub
    Green and big
    By Conrado de Quiros
    Philippine Daily Inquirer

    Miriam Defensor-Santiago summoned Rico Puno to a Senate hearing and took on the roles of judge, jury and executioner. Quite apart from prosecutor, haranguer and clown.

    Listen to her. On Puno being at Jesse Robredo’s house: “It’s pointless (to question him). As a former judge, I know he’ll only insist on his answer that since he was asked to secure documents, he’d go and secure documents whether they are in the office or in the residence.” On Puno’s involvement in jueteng: “We no longer discussed it because he’d insist on what he said and I would insist on what I said. It would have been pointless.”

    On Puno in the Department of the Interior and Local Government: “How can a creature flourish without its creator and its protector? It’s difficult to exterminate (jueteng) until Malacañang makes it a national priority.” On Puno’s creator and protector: “That will die with me if they shoot me today. But maybe some other day, we’ll reveal.” On when that day would be: (During the height of Renato Corona’s trial, she said, Malacañang hired a “character assassin” to do a number on her.) “Now if that will happen again because of this, I will already identify the person (Puno’s creator and protector) because they would by then be directly challenging me.”

    On Puno’s demeanor: “If he made me angry, I could have gone ballistic.” On Puno’s argument: “I don’t get the logic of what he was trying to say.”

    Now, let’s see: What part of Puno’s testimony is particularly hard to grasp?

    Puno’s answer to the “raid” on Robredo’s house: “(My visit to Robredo’s house) was witnessed by representatives of the late secretary, elements of the Quezon City police, representatives of the office of internal security of the secretary, regular guards of the building and my staff.” In fact, that visit was proposed by Robredo’s security aide himself, Oliver Tanseco, after remembering that his boss kept other sensitive documents in his residence. The party did not enter the empty unit. They just took pictures of it from the outside.

    Of course Ricky Carandang, Edwin Lacierda, and Abigail Valte had much to do with reinforcing the notion that Puno acted suspiciously by repeatedly saying P-Noy ordered him to secure only Robredo’s office and not his house. But that has been rectified. You want to conduct a hearing, do your homework. All Miriam had to do if she wanted to keep an open mind was ask Leni Robredo or P-Noy himself. But that only raises questions about whether Miriam has an open mind. Or a mind to open.

    She says Puno “insists on his answer,” as though there’s something wrong with that. Why in hell shouldn’t he? That was what happened.

    Puno’s answer to the charge that he has jueteng ties is this: Since he was put in charge of the police, he has been the object of rumors. “For the record, I would like to state that two years after, not a single case has been filed against me by my accusers.”

    That’s the astonishing thing: If he were guilty, surely it would not be the hardest thing to find some shred, scrap, iota of hard evidence against him? There’s none. Why in hell shouldn’t he insist on his answer? It’s true: Not a single case has been filed against him by his accusers.

    Which brings us to the idea that Puno is untouchable because he has a creator or protector. Earlier, Miriam went to town with the proposition that a powerful person had pressured P-Noy into appointing Puno to the DILG and keeping him there.

    At the very least, what’s wrong with it is that surely Miriam must know directly from the impeachment trial and indirectly from P-Noy’s choice of chief justice that when people try to pressure him into doing something, he does exactly the opposite?

    At the very most, what’s wrong with it is this: If Puno has a creator and protector, and if Miriam knows him, why on earth does she not expose him? She called for the hearing, she said, in aid of legislation. Surely it would aid legislation, not to speak of national interest, not to speak of fighting corruption, not to speak of common sense, for her to reveal the manipulative hand, the malignant shadow, the evil that doesn’t sleep behind this, well, creature? Why wait to be directly challenged by a character assassin to do so?

    That is not a senatorial prerogative, that is a civic duty. It is Miriam’s obligation as a citizen to do so. Frankly, I don’t know why a senator or congressman doesn’t call for a hearing and summon her to shed light on Puno’s maker. In aid of entertainment, if not sanity.

    In fact, if Puno has a creator and protector, it is only P-Noy. It was P-Noy who appointed him despite opposition from Puno’s detractors, which include the Liberal Party, it is P-Noy who continues to defend him despite opposition from Puno’s detractors, which include the Liberal Party. Now, either P-Noy is a coddler of a corrupt official from ignorance or toleration, neither of which can be good for his daang matuwid, or he knows something his detractors do not, which is that Puno is innocent of the charges. Why doesn’t Miriam just name P-Noy if she believes in a creator and protector of this creature? Is she afraid?

    Miriam says proof that Puno has links to jueteng is that jueteng hasn’t waned. That is her contention, based on the kind of research that produced her claim that Puno raided Robredo’s house. Government has its own, which is that jueteng has been curbed and has the figures to prove it. Quite apart from that, jueteng rioted like starved inmates in dank jails during the regimes of her two favorite presidents, Erap and Gloria. How come she never summoned anyone to a hearing, much less created one? How come she never spoke of the creators and protectors of unsavory creatures?

    Finally, she says if Puno had made her angry, she would have gone ballistic.

    She does look a little like the Incredible Hulk now.