PROPER DOCUMENTATION. Education spokesperson Michael Poa shows the public the recommendations from the Commission on Audit concerning the procurement of laptops for distance learning, in a press briefing on Wednesday (Aug. 10, 2022). He said they are closely coordinating with the Procurement Service of the Department of Budget and Management to secure proper documentation on the purchase. (PNA photo by Joseph Razon)

MANILA – The Department of Education (DepEd) said on Wednesday it will either do a "quick fix" or avail of the warranty for the allegedly "pricey" laptops that the agency had bought for its distance learning program.

In a press briefing at the DepEd central office in Pasig City, Education spokesperson Michael Poa said they will also “closely coordinate” with the Procurement Service of the Department of Budget and Management (PS-DBM) over the laptop purchase which the Commission on Audit had earlier flagged.

“We will use a two-pronged approach. First, let’s evaluate and see if these laptops are truly slow and do an internal quick fix in the department, if we have one, to help the teachers," he said.

"The second is legal in nature. If these computers are slow and not at par with what we wanted, these computers, as I understand, are still under warranty so we will invoke the warranty provision in our contract with our laptop suppliers ," he added.

Poa said they also wanted to know why the laptops, worth PHP58,300 each but with relatively lower specifications, were procured instead of those with higher specifications.

He, however, said it would still be unfair to comment without having seen the documentation of the purchase.

“I’m sure when the PS-DBM did our market-survey quotation, when they determined the bid price, that’s backed with documentation because that’s required for the procurement. But on our side, we don’t have that document on hand,” he said, adding that the DepEd has requested the documents from the PS-DBM.

Poa said the PS-DBM was “very cooperative” with their request and vowed to look into the matter.

The DepEd previously said it has sent its responses to the recommendations of the COA, but maintained that the latter's Annual Observation Memorandum on the laptop purchase is not conclusive and remains an observation. (PNA)