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DepEd to probe alleged purchase of overprices cameras

DepEd to probe alleged purchase of overprices cameras

The Department of Education said that it will investigate the allegations that it purchased overpriced cameras in 2019.

DepEd Spokesman Michael Poa refused to comment on the issue saying that he needs to review the facts first.

“It was being claimed that certain cameras were procured back in 2019, if I’m not mistaken. When I looked into it, ang nasa picture was an entry level camera, but when I asked the Public Affairs Service regarding the cameras being used by DepEd, lahat naman po ‘yan Mark 4, so hindi po siya ‘yung entry level na camera,” Poa said in an interview on CNN Philippines.

The issue stemmed from a now-deleted post of a photojournalist showing a photo of a Canon 1500D camera with a DepEd sticker on it and saying that the unit was purchased for P155,929.

The DSLR camera’s serial number, acquisition date and accountable officer were on the sticker.

The Alliance of Concerned Teachers called on DepEd, the Commission on Audit, and the legislative branches of government to investigate the alleged overpricing.

“After the certified overpriced bulk purchase of laptops as found by the Senate investigation, now came pieces of evidence pointing to overpricing on purchase of cameras, by the DepEd central office and some field offices. It is both enraging and demoralizing for teachers to hear of such anomalies while we feel everyday the scantiness of funds for education on the ground,” Vladimir Quetua, the group’s chairperson, said.

“Walang konsiyensiya itong mga sangkot sa maling paggasta ng pera ng taumbayan na laan sana sa edukasyon ng mga kabataan. Pagnanakaw ito sa kinabukasan ng mga bata. Dapat lang na imbestigahan ito, tuntunin ang lahat ng nakinabang at kasapakat, at parusahan ayon sa batas,” Quetua added.

He called on Education Secretary Sara Duterte to look into the matter.

“Sec. VP Sara Duterte promised of addressing corruption in the DepEd in her Basic Education Report 2023. This matter only deserves her attention, as well as the many other possible controversial purchases in the department. Her promise will only be meaningful if we see that concrete actions on the anomalies are executed,” Quetua said.

He urged the Commission on Audit and Congress to also investigate the issue.

“Hiling namin na bigyan ninyo ng katarungan ang bawat guro na gumagastos ng sariling pera para magpakumpuni ng silid-aralan at bawat batang walang aklat sa pag-aaral,” Quetua said.