After laptop mess: DepEd to probe alleged ‘overpriced’ camera equipment

Following the laptop mess, the Department of Education (DepEd) is faced again with another overpricing allegation concerning various camera equipment procured by the agency.

On January 31, activist Renato Reyes tweeted a photo by professional photographer Jhun Dantes showing a Canon 1500D DSLR camera allegedly procured by DepEd.

Reyes observed that the device, marked with a DepEd sticker indicating a price of ₱155,929, could be acquired online for just approximately Php 23,000 with kit lens already.

On the other hand, DepEd refuted the allegation, claiming that the unit shown in the photo was a Canon EOS 5D Mark IV which is around Php 138,000 (body only) if based on iPrice.

“It was being claimed that certain cameras were procured back in 2019 if I’m not mistaken and when I looked into it ang nasa picture was an entry level camera,” said Michael Poa, DepEd spokesperson.

“But when I asked the Public Affairs service regarding the cameras being used by DepEd, lahat naman po ‘yan Mark 4, so hindi po sya ‘yung entry level na camera,” Poa explained.

“Maasahan po ninyo that we will look into this,” he told CNN Philippines in an interview.

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Michael Poa Cnn Ph The Source Camera Procurement Issue

Snapshot/ The Source, CNN Philippines

Moreover, Reyes also delved some bidding documents via PhilGEPS and spotted anomalous procurements.

One instance is the Invitation to Bid (ITB) dating back to 2021 with Reference No. 7577748 stating over Php 2.9 million approved budget for DSLR camera batteries, memory cards, handheld gimbal, camera backpack, etc.

“It’s time to ask COA if there are any standards for these purchases,” said Reyes.

Previously, the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee recommended pressing graft and corruption charges against Christopher Lloyd Lao, a previous Department of Budget and Management – Procurement Service (PS-DBM) head, and some former and present DepEd top executives regarding the purchased laptops in 2021 that were overpriced by at least Php 979 million.

In hopes to avoid similar issues, DepEd recently established an office to facilitate and make its procurement process more efficient and transparent.

As of February 5, in another tweet, Reyes further detailed the information that was censored on the photo.

He also said that nobody from the education department has contacted him yet to proceed with the investigation and questioned their urgency with the matter.

Avatar for JM Chavaria

JM's highest stat is probably his curious ardor to anything tech—electronics and gaming in particular. He certainly heeds utmost regard to specsheet, visuals, and rule of thirds. While JM may have a keen sense of writing, he randomly spends time experimenting on graphic designs, and calibrating his knowledge even further on photography and editing. If creativity and wit sometimes leave JM's system, watching films, anime and a good stroll for memes are his approved therapeutic claims.

1 Response

  1. Avatar for Miss Call Miss Call says:

    Ahhh… some things never change is coming.

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