ISLAMABAD (SPECIAL REPORT)
The evaluation committee has remained unable to finalize its recommendations for selection of consultant for completion of auction of much delayed third generation (3G) technology as the committee knocked down two proposals on technical grounds out of three while financial bidding of last one required more due diligence before finalizing any decision.
As controversy between Chairman PTA Farooq Awan and Member Technical, Khawar Siddique Khokhar lingers on for unveiling results of evaluation committee in the presence of media as he quoted confidentiality clause of Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) rules at the start of the meeting and left the room when Chairman PTA ordered him to give presentation by quoting orders of the premier in this regard.
“I will write to Prime Minister for taking disciplinary action against Member Technical as it was humiliating that he left the room instead of giving presentation on the outcome of evaluation committee,” Chairman PTA said during the meeting. He said that nothing of this sort was secret and it would ensure transparency. He said that he would take responsibility if allegation of breach of confidentiality clause of PPRA rule was raised.
However, Member Technical Khawar Siddique told The News after the meeting that he could not present results of evaluation committee on verbal orders of the Prime Minister as he would go by the book. “If I receive written orders from the premier who am I for refusing unveiling results before the media,” he added.
There is another controversy on this transaction as Chairman PTA considers Auction Supervisory Committee (ASC) as endorsement body for selection of consultant and PTA being authority would finalize it while Member Technical considers as ASC as final approving authority for selection of consultant.
Earlier, in the committee meeting, Chairman PTA said that each day delay in the auction of 3G was causing a loss of Rs 38 million. He said that the on the directives of the PM, the PTA had given undertaking that media would be made partner in the oversight function of this important transaction in order to avoid controversies.
According to the presentation of the evaluation committee, three parties participated into Expression of Interest for selection of audit out of which Access Technology and E Procurement Technologies bid was rejected on technical ground. In technical evaluation, the committee granted 74 marks to Interconnect Technologies, a UK based firm out of total 100 marks as the requirement of passing marks was 70 so the company got through from technical evaluation.
In financial bidding, the UK based firm presented different scenarios ranging from $18 million to over $150 million instead of giving any flat rate on completion of transaction over the reserved price.
Chairman PTA, Advisor to PM on Information Technology and representative of Ministry of Information Technology raised questions over evaluation committee’s work for not presenting benchmarking to evaluate financial bidding of sole party whereas PPRA rules guided due diligence in such a scenario to protect interest of procurement agency.
Finally, it was decided in the meeting that the evaluation committee would undertake benchmarking to determine market cost of consultant after detailed scrutiny and come up with its recommendations on coming Thursday before the authority for taking any final decision. (Ends)