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Home Columns Unsolicited Advice The Arroyo Administration’s “Incredible Bulk”
The Arroyo Administration’s “Incredible Bulk” PDF Print E-mail
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Columns - Unsolicited Advice
Wednesday, 23 July 2008 08:50

President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo (PGMA) has a relative by affinity, who some Overseas-Filipino leaders call by the monstrous moniker, “Incredible Bulk.” For he is not only huge and fat but he has also cornered incredibly the bulk, if not the greater part, of government contracts, loans, purchases of equipment, etceteras, etc. Name any contract entered into by the Arroyo Dispensation and Mr. Incredible Bulk has his or his lawyers’ and/or his cronies’ fingers dipped into it.

 

This presidential kin and his lawyers and cronies have been reported by foreign and Filipino-American investors to have asked a minimum of twenty-percent up-front fee for any project or investment proposed for the country as their share, pay off or what not. And many of these foreign capitalists and entrepreneurs are pissed off and they back off. These investors often go to a neighboring Asian country, where they know that the rate of corruption is much lower and where the political leaders and their kin are not that greedy.

 

A case in point is the recent purchase by the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) of ten units of cargo-screening devices that come equipped with Gamma and X-ray features. A group of Filipino-American traders contacted Mr. Incredible Bulk for the supply of the said devices priced at $3.0-million per unit. He wanted the unit priced at $10.0-million each. The sellers backed off, as they said that they would not want to violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) of the United States, where their company was based. Mr. Incredible Bulk and Company went straight to the Chinese manufacturer of the cargo-screening devices and made the deal. The PPA bought 10 of these units for $100-million and Mr. Incredible Bulk made a gross profit of $70-million, minimum, aside from the normal commission that is given to the marketing company (that could have been the Filipino-American traders).

 

There is more to the story of the cargo-screening devices. Mr. Incredible Bulk wanted also to arrange for the supply of smaller X-ray devices for Philippine airports. Each device was priced at $20,000 but he wanted the invoice to show a price of $75,000. Again the group of Filipino-American traders backed off, as it refused to violate the U.S. FCPA and Mr. Incredible Bulk went direct likewise to the Chinese manufacturer.

 

This writer gave an unsolicited advice to the officers of the Filipino-American trading company to wait until there is a new President installed in the Philippines before presenting the dossiers in their possession. No investigation now will prosper as PGMA has complete control of the criminal-justice system of the homeland. Perhaps the process of dealing with Mr. Incredible Bulk and his gang may become a hot topic during the coming 2010 presidential debates. The presidential candidates have to be pressured to adopt a common stand of bringing to justice Mr. Incredible Bulk and Company, so that they could go to jail for economic plunder and all their assets confiscated.

 

The Filipino voters have to put an end to the present practice of letting the departing President and his/her kin go scot-free and charging their looting of the public treasury to experience.

In the meantime, this writer wishes to advise the PPA officials to protect themselves by securing authenticated copies of the documents involved in the above-described anomalous transactions. They can become whistle blowers after PGMA is no longer in office. Perhaps, the PPA officials and their staff can avoid jail time by becoming state witnesses and even pocketing part of the reward given to whistle blowers. This unsolicited advice is given to all Philippine-government officials and functionaries who have evidence of the corrupt practices of the present Dispensation. Protect yourselves by gathering the evidence, hiding them in a secure place and turning them over to special prosecutors when the day of reckoning comes. For as the Tagalog idiom says, “Pag may umpisa, may katapusan” (If there is a beginning, there is an end).

 

To borrow the slogan of Doc Simp of Chicago and Romblon, "Hala bira, hala bira . . ."

 



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Last Updated on Wednesday, 23 July 2008 22:08
 

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