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Pera-pera lang! Locsin: People got kickbacks from changing passport maker

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Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro “Teddyboy” Locsin Jr. has hinted that money was the reason why the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) changed its contractor for printing passports.

Locsin revealed Saturday (January 12) that “people made money by changing contractor” after disclosing that the DFA’s former contractor for producing passports “took all” of the passport holders’ data.

In response to netizen @CarenLou, Locsin posed a rhetoric question on why the DFA’s old contractor needed to be terminated.

“And by the way, why was the previous contractor terminated? New technology? Then demand it to acquire the new technology but leave the job to it. Di ba? But that means no kickback. In short, people made money by changing contractor. Ano pa? Syet,” he said.

In another tweet, Locsin described the DFA’s former contractor for printing passports as as “the most respectable company.”

“What I heard and there are so many stories in the affected department they sued us for wrongful termination. In fact it was the most respectable company, foreign, French even. So why? Kaching, Kaching, Kaching, Kaching,” he said when asked by netizen @iamAlexisChua if there will be charges filed against those involved in the data breach.

Locsin hinted anew that money was involved in the DFA’s decision to change contractors for passport printing when netizen @roymabasa quoted Chief Presidential Legal Counsel and Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo in 2016 that officials of the Asian Productivity Organization (APO) Production, Unit Inc. and United Graphic Expression Corp. (Ugec) may be liable for criminal charges over their subcontracting arrangement.

“How does one win a contract for something he has no equipment or know how to perform? The millions if $s question,” he said.

The DFA in 2015 signed a memorandum of agreement with APO, which is under the Presidential Communication Operations Office (PCOO), for the production of Philippine passports.

However, it was later discovered that APO contracted Ugec for the job.

Former Foreign Affairs Secretary Perfecto Yasay Jr. said in a congressional hearing last year that he has rescinded the contract with APO-Ugec in 2017 but it still continued printing passports.

Related stories:
Why isn’t DFA printing passports? Locsin explains reason for getting private contractor

Sotto on DFA passport data fiasco: ‘Hindi nakakabahala pero nakakainis’

Risa to DFA: Explain how contractor ‘made off’ with Pinoys’ passport data

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