Procurement appeal board at president’s office sets a thief to catch a thief!

We previously exposed how irregularities have taken place in the procurement of tabs to be distributed to schoolchildren as per the 2017 budget. The procurement board has acted fraudulently and illegally in awarding the tender.

 

The board has awarded the tender to a certain company based purely on a certificate valid only in the US. Other bidders were given time until October 25 to submit objections. Seven of the 10 bidders filed objections to the ministerial procurement committee appeal board at the President’s Office.  Considering the appeals, the board appointed a committee comprising retired state officials K.A.S. Gunasekara, Lalith R. Silva and A.D.S. Gunasekara. The committee allowed the appellants on November 16 to inquire into the matter.

All the bidders who submitted appeals participated. They based their objection to the FCC certificate applicable only for the US. All those companies were experienced in the field, but none of the tabs supplied by them had the relevant certificate. That means the education ministry technical committee requested certificate is problematic and if that certificate is essential for the tabs. Another matter is that only the tabs imported by the chosen company, Metropolitan, has that certificates.

The appellants are worried by the lack of attention by the committee to their grievances and they question the experience of its members with regard to the subject. There is a question if justice is served by this appeal board at the president’s office.

A further investigation revealed that only these three officers are given the task of inquiring into irregularities in all the fields. Their lack of experience means that the decisions given by them in the past were not fair or impartial.

Local suppliers should be encouraged by obtaining an impartial decision by an independent committee. That will ensure transparency in the process and help minimize fraud and corruption by state officials.

The present appeal board members get their wants done by misleading the suppliers. Their decisions are similar to decisions at kangaroo courts.

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