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ACROSS a 75-day period, PCIJ made 135 phone calls and sent at least 42 letters to get the side of 21 contractors for its reports on the infrastructure projects bidded and awarded by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) in the first two years of the Duterte administration.

THE GOVERNMENT awards a contractor-bidder a contract if its bid amount has been evaluated and found to be the “lowest calculated bid.”

THREE HAD been suspended or blacklisted, including one for submitting fake tax clearance certificates. One had its corporate registration revoked. The officers of four others are facing trial for alleged graft. Two have direct connections to politicians, some others had sealed deals via financial favors exchanged with certain politicians. All share a record of incomplete or bad projects, and unsatisfactory ratings in some project performance evaluations.