Press Release
January 15, 2010

Bidding for gov't contracts on live TV? Why not

Move over, Pinoy Big Brother and Survivor, a new reality TV show may be in the horizon.

If Sen. Manny Villar will have his way, he would order the live TV coverage of the bidding for government contracts to prevent rigging and under-the-table deals.

"I am pushing for a live broadcast of the procurement processes of the government," said Villar, Nacionalista Party president and standard-bearer.

"This will have two desirable effects: first, it can minimize if not totally eliminate corruption in bidding out government contracts, and second, it would educate the citizenry on some important aspects of government operations," Villar said in a statement.

He cited that Filipino taxpayers would be very much interested in seeing how their taxes are being spent. It may even elicit suggestions on how to improve the country's procurement laws directly from the citizenry.

The senator stressed that television is a very powerful medium and reaches a large number of households in the country.

Villar said that transparency is especially important this year as it plans to undertake infrastructure projects worth P117 billion, bid out P1.3 billion in reforestation contracts, and buy supplies worth P43 billion, among other big-ticket expenditures.

"Utilizing the wide reach of broadcast TV would enable the government to send its messages to the people. Transparency should be one of them and live TV coverage of the bidding for government contracts is a start," he said.

"It is also one way of increasing the trust and confidence of the people in the government. Once they see that everything is above-board, they can rest easy knowing that their hard-earned money is spent well."

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