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Information Technology Foundation of the Philippines v.

COMELEC
GR No. 159139

Doctrine: For an orderly administration of justice, the Supreme Court has the inherent power to punish
for contempt administrative agencies that disregard or disobey an order of the Court.

Facts: On June 7, 1995, Congress passed Republic Act 8046, which authorized Comelec to conduct a
nationwide demonstration of a computerized election system and allowed the poll body to pilot-test the
system in the March 1996 elections in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

On October 29, 2002, Comelec adopted in its Resolution 02-0170 a modernization program for the 2004
elections. It resolved to conduct biddings for the three (3) phases of its Automated Election System;
namely, Phase I — Voter Registration and Validation System; Phase II — Automated Counting and
Canvassing System; and Phase III — Electronic Transmission.

On January 24, 2003, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo issued Executive Order No. 172, which
allocated the sum of P2.5 billion to fund the AES for the May 10, 2004 elections. Upon the request of
Comelec, she authorized the release of an additional P500 million.

On January 28, 2003, the Commission issued an "Invitation to Apply for Eligibility and to Bid". 

On May 29, 2003, five individuals and entities (including the herein Petitioners Information Technology
Foundation of the Philippines, represented by its president, Alfredo M. Torres; and Ma. Corazon Akol)
wrote a letter  to Comelec Chairman Benjamin Abalos Sr. They protested the award of the Contract to
Respondent MPC "due to glaring irregularities in the manner in which the bidding process had been
conducted." Citing therein the noncompliance with eligibility as well as technical and procedural
requirements (many of which have been discussed at length in the Petition), they sought a re-bidding.

Issue: Whether the bidding process was unconstitutional; 

Held:  WHEREFORE, the Petition is GRANTED. The Court hereby declares NULL and VOID Comelec
Resolution No. 6074 awarding the contract for Phase II of the CAES to Mega Pacific Consortium (MPC).
Also declared null and void is the subject Contract executed between Comelec and Mega Pacific
eSolutions (MPEI). 55 Comelec is further ORDERED to refrain from implementing any other contract or
agreement entered into with regard to this project.