GMA News Online

DepEd to bid out Phase 2 of PPP classroom project worth P8.8-B

September 4, 2012 2:41pm

The Department of Education (DepEd) will bid out – before the year ends – the second phase of its public-private partnership (PPP) for school infrastructure project (PSIP) worth P8.8 billion before the end of the year.
The PISP was intended to fill by 2013 a serious classroom deficit across the nation.
In Phase 2 of PPP PISP, DepEd will build 11,000 classrooms in Visayas and Mindanao by next year, Undersecretary Francis Varela told GMA News Online on Tuesday after the DepEd budget hearing at the Senate.
“We are looking at it as turnkey program… We are allocating P8.8 billion…” said Varela.
“We are finalizing the list of schools and classrooms that will be included in the package… We will be building about 11,000 classrooms for the second phase PPP. We hope to bid it out before the end of the year,” Varela noted.
DepEd initially said it will bid out P2.4 billion worth of classrooms by the end of the year through a build-lease transfer arrangement with a participant from the private sector.
However, it opted to raise the budget and widen the scope of the project redesigning it to fit the turnkey arrangement with the private sector – meaning the bidder who bags the project will be paid only after the classrooms have been built.
The change was made to espouse a better fiscal position, Varela explained,
adding that the Budget and Management Department approved a higher budget for DepEd’s infrastructure projects.  
“Even as we bid out the first phase successfully, we want to encourage more bidders to participate,” he added.
Last Aug. 16, DepEd announced that it successfully bid out three build-lease transfer contracts for the design, construction, and maintenance of 9,301 classrooms in Regions I, III, and IV-A for 10 years.
The contractors that won were BF Corporation-Riverbanks Development Corporation and Citicore Investment Holdings Inc.-Megawide Construction Corporation Inc.

No more armchair, textbook backlog in 2013
During Monday's budget hearing at the House of Representatives, Education Secretary Armin Luistro that the department aims to completely solve the backlog on textbooks and armchairs in the country by the end of 2012.
Luistro said the DepEd wants to achieve a one-to-one ratio of books and armchairs to students by wiping out the backlog of 2,573,212 chairs and 61.7 textbooks.
He added that the department also targets to build over 17,000 new classrooms next year using the DepEd’s proposed budget of P293.2 billion for next year.
“We want your support for the 2013 budget so we can say goodbye to shortages to teachers, classrooms and toilets,” Luistro told the House committee on appropriations.
Luistro likewise said the DepEd’s 2013 budget will also cover the construction of 90,000 sanitation facilities, as well as the purchase of 31.1 million teachers’ manuals. — VS/RSJ, GMA News
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