Requesting Entity: Philippine Institute of Civil Engineers (PICE)-Zamboanga City Chapter
Issues Concern: Scope of Observers' Participation in the Procurement Process
Whether the Bids and Awards Committee (BAC) is required to invite Observers during the post-qualification stage of the procurement process.
Section 13 of RA 9184 expressly states that the BAC shall in "all stages of the procurement process", invite Observers to sit in the proceedings. It is clear that the phrase "all stages of the procurement" shall include all the procurement stages above mentioned. Thus, the BAC is mandated to invite Observers in all stages of the procurement process, including the post-qualification stage, x x x. Observers sign as witnesses in the Post-qualification Summary Report if, in their independent observation, the BAC followed the procedure described in the IRR of RA 9184 and the Manual, and that they are amenable to the results of the post-qualification. However, if the Observer finds the post-qualification procedures irregular or the Report does not match the actual findings, he shall so state in writing through the submission of an Observer's Report addressed to the BAC Chairman, and the same shall be attached to the Post-qualification Summary Report submitted to the approving authority.
Whether the presence of Observers may be limited to the Opening of Bids by the BAC.
The attendance of Observers in all stages of the procurement process is aimed at enhancing transparency, which is one of the governing principles of government procurement espoused by RA 9184. To confine the invitation of observers only to the Opening of Bids would limit transparency in the procurement process.