Public accounts watchdog concerned over continuing procurement lapses

Public accounts watchdog concerned over continuing procurement lapses

Parliament's public accounts watchdog has expressed concern in a report on Tuesday that despite recent efforts to enhance procurement rules in the public sector, some organisations are still not diligent enough in ensuring compliance.

Get the full story from The Straits Times.

Here's an excerpt from the Third Report of the Public Accounts Committee:

Procurement Irregularities

The Committee noted that procurement continued to be an area prone to lapses. In the latest Report of the Auditor-General for the Financial Year 2012/13, 12 out of the 35 observations reported pertained to laxity in the area of procurement. The lapses included the following:

(i) Waiving competition on weak grounds;

(ii) Allowing bid alterations by certain bidders after tender had closed;

(iii) Not disclosing evaluation criteria upfront in tender documents;

(iv) Not evaluating tenders properly; and

(v) Obtaining approvals retrospectively.

The Committee was concerned that even with efforts over the last few years to enhance procurement rules and procedures across the public sector, there were indications that some public sector entities were not sufficiently diligent in ensuring compliance with procurement rules.

The Committee sought written explanations from the following Ministries on the procurement lapses:

(i) Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth (MCCY);

(ii) Ministry of Education (MOE);

(iii) Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources (MEWR);

(iv) Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA);

(v) Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA); and

(vi) National Research Foundation (NRF) of Prime Minister's Office (PMO).

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