A-G Report: Bintulu Port awarded RM1.4b in works without ministry’s nod

The Bintulu Port Authority had allegedly failed to obtain the Finance Ministry’s approval for projects worth RM1.4 billion. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
The Bintulu Port Authority had allegedly failed to obtain the Finance Ministry’s approval for projects worth RM1.4 billion. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 27 — The Bintulu Port Authority (BPA) did not obtain the Finance Ministry’s approval for projects worth RM1.4 billion that were directly negotiated, federal auditors said.

In the Auditor-General's Report 2016 Series 2 issued today, they noted there were also no detailed plans before the contracts were issued to Muhibbah Viccana JV (MVJV) on December 16 last year.

"The auditors did not find evidence that BPA requested permission from the Finance Ministry to conduct the procurement exercise through direct negotiation," it reported.

It identified four such items that failed to undergo an open tender: the construction of the supply base dock (RM1.24 billion); project consultation (RM175.3 million); environmental monitoring, compliance reporting and coastal erosion monitoring (RM15.42 million) and; consultancy, management and monitoring services (RM29.02 million).

All four were also missing letters of intent as well as details of the negotiations.

It said the decision paper also carried a sole signature by the general manager, rather than all members of the procurement board as required.

“BPA’s failure to follow price negotiation procedures exposes them to the risks of power abuse and mismanagement. Without market research and cost estimates, BPA was unable to ensure that this project had the best value for money,” it said.

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