ISLAMABAD: The management of Polyclinic caused a loss of Rs30 million to the exchequer by not awarding a contract to the lowest bidder for purchase of medicines in 2006-2007, said an audit report.
The Auditor General of Pakistan’s annual report for 2011-12 said that the “repeat demand” for medicines also exceeded 15 per cent of the original procurement, another violation of the rules.
According to public procurement rules (PPR), the bidder with the lowest evaluated bid, if not in conflict with any other laws or government policies, shall be awarded the procurement contract within a set period.
According to another PPR rule, a procuring agency shall only engage in direct contracts if repeat orders (for procurement) do not exceed 15 per cent of the original procurement demand.
According to the audit report, the Federal Government Services Hospital (FGSH), better known as Polyclinic, floated a prequalification bid for the bulk purchase of drugs, surgical and laboratory equipment on a daily basis in the timeframe and spent a total of Rs214 million for this purpose.
The report also pointed out that the manufacturing firms had also been pre-qualified by the hospital management for purchasing surgical and laboratory equipment in violation of the PPR rules.
The Polyclinic management said that during the last quarter 2006-07, the now-defunct Ministry Of Health finalised tenders for centralised selection and procurement of drugs without concurrence of the Finance Division. “All the tenders were extended by the Ministry Of Health for 2006-2007 against the rule of not exceeding 15 per cent in repeat orders,” stated the management. The hospital management also said that by not awarding the contract to the lowest bidder, they ensured that best known medicines and drugs were purchased for emergency care and life-threatening situations.
“All the selections were made in the best interest of patients,” the management replied in a written statement.
The departmental accounts committee had been directed to get the irregularity condoned by the Finance Division, but no compliance was reported.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 10th, 2013.
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