NPM No. 011-2017
Requesting Entity: Department of Budget and Management – Procurement Service (DBM-PS)
Issues Concern: Mandatory Nature of Periods
Opinion on the legal implications of DBM-PS taking over a procurement project from the Department of Transportation (DoTR) and continuing with the proceedings despite the lapse of the three (3) month period provided for under Section 38 of Republic Act (RA) No. 9184 and its 2016 revised Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR).
The mandatory nature of the periods under RA 9184 was likewise recognized by the Honorable Supreme Court in the case of Jacomille v. Abaya, et al., where it was held that “[t]he different periods provided by RA 9184 within which certain stages of the procurement process must be completed is not merely directory but mandatory.”
Nonetheless, Section 65.1(b) of RA 9184 and its 2016 Revised IRR provide that awarding of contracts beyond the prescribed period of action may be recognized for justifiable causes.
Based on the foregoing, should the Procuring Entity decide to extend the periods on procurement, it must show and provide compelling, sufficient, valid, reasonable, and justifiable cause for such extension. Such valid justification, however, will only free officials from penal liability, and may not be applicable against the administrative and civil aspects of the case pursuant to existing laws, rules and regulations.