PNP mulls legal action on ‘defective' trucks, undelivered assets

By Benjamin Pulta

MANILA -- The Philippine National Police (PNP) is considering legal actions in connection with the undelivered equipment and lackluster post-sale services for police patrol cars it acquired in 2015.

Speaking to newsmen Tuesday, PNP spokesperson Senior Supt. Benigno Durana Jr. reiterated that the Department of Budget and Management's Procurement Service was the office in charge of the purchase of 2,000 India-made Mahindra police trucks.

"The lapses did not come from the Philippine National Police," Durana stressed, adding that the PNP is prepared to explain why the police force's leadership at the time failed to initiate an "operational needs assessment" after the initial delivery of the vehicles.

Durana said they will also demand delivery of all combat and mobility assets already transacted in behalf of the PNP, adding that they are considering legal remedy for the return of any sums paid out for the undelivered assets back to the national treasury.

Presently, the PNP hinted that they are considering possible sanctions against Columbia Motors' participation in future contracts.

"We will comply with the COA (Commission on Audit) recommendations, truth to tell we are very much (participating) in the preparation of that report including to demand immediate delivery of mobility and combat assets and at the same time have our legal team review the bid documents and study the option of getting a refund in case it will not be given to us. Or probably, if the funds were not obligated based on the intelligence that the money be returned to the national treasury," Durana said.

The PNP spokesman said there is no decision yet to stop using the Mahindra Scorpios, a 2.5 liter diesel police car.

Some 200 police vehicles are in varying states of disrepair after Mahindra's local partner, Columbia Motors failed to provide adequate parts and service support. (PNA)