Saturday, January 20, 2018

Central Tenders Board left out of process

The Central Tenders Board was established to ensure that the proper procedures are followed in the procurement of goods and services by the State. Under Section 4 of the Act, the Central Tenders Board shall have the sole and exclusive authority to act for, in the name and on behalf of the Government and statutory bodies, in inviting, considering, accepting and rejecting offers for the supply of articles, works or any services necessary for the carrying out of the functions of Government or any of the statutory bodies; and to dispose of surplus or unserviceable articles belonging to the Government or any of the statutory bodies.

Under Section 20 A, Government may act on its own behalf where it enters into a contract with NIPDEC or a company which is wholly owned by the State (such as UDeCOTT) for the supply of articles or for the undertaking of works or services.

However, the issue of Invaders Bay never went to the Central Tenders Board.

It was the Ministry of Planning which published, received and evaluated the Request for Proposals for Invaders Bay development project. And it was the Ministry of Planning, not the Central Tenders Board, which selected the three developers, out of a pool of ten, in October 2011. The three developers were Invaders Bay Marina Development Group; M Falcon Group; and Dachin Commercial Development Company.

The Cabinet, by Minute No. 3179 of November 24, 2011, agreed to the selection of the three developers; to the establishment of an Interdisciplinary Review Team to formalise with the selected developers the terms and conditions of the commercial lease and identify incentives. The Joint Consultative Council (JCC) raised concerns and stated that the entire process was “fundamentally flawed”.

The JCC sought to obtain the legal advice provided to the Government on the issue of Invaders Bay. When Planning Minister Bhoe Tewarie refused, the JCC took the matter to court and won.

However, the Ministry has appealed the decision.