Requesting Entity: Provincial Awards Committee of Nueva Vizcaya
Issues Concern: Prohibition on Reference to Brand Names and Procurement of Branded Common-Use Goods
1. Request for clarification on the prohibition on reference to brand names as specified under Section 18 of Republic Act 9184 (R.A. 9184) and its Implementing Rules and Regulations Part A (IRR-A).
As can be gleaned from the above-quoted provision (Section 18, R.A. 9184), the prohibition on reference to brand names is without any exception or condition. This is a case where no interpretation and construction is necessary. It is a cardinal rule [in] statutory construction that where the law speaks in clear and categorical language, there is no room for interpretation or construction; there is only room for application.
Taking into account such prohibition, procuring entities should augment its resources and develop its capabilities in drafting detailed technical specifications for its procurements so as to acquire the type or nature of the product desired.
2. Request for clarification on the procurement of branded goods and common-use supplies.
With regard to the procurement of common-use supplies, the IRR-A specifically provides that the same shall be undertaken through the PS-DBM. This is supported by Section 54.2(g) of IRR-A of R.A. 9184 which provides as follows:
With respect to item (e) of Section 53 of the Act and this IRR-A, a direct negotiation may be made with the Government agency concerned: Provided, however, That the procurement of common-use goods and supplies shall be undertaken through the PS-DBM. (Emphasis supplied)
The IRR-A categorically mandated procuring entities to buy its common-use goods and supplies from the PS-DBM. The only exception from this rule is in case the common- use goods sought to be procured is not available in the PSDBM, in which case, procuring entities may resort to the alternative method of shopping. It should be emphasized, however, that this exception does not extend to a circumstance where the brand of the common-use goods sought to be procured is not available with the PS-DBM.
In view of the foregoing, so long as the common-use goods sought to be procured are available in the PS-DBM, procuring entities shall buy therefrom irrespective of their brand preference.