ISLAMABAD – Transparency International Pakistan (TIP) has noted that National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) has violated the PPRA rules in award of contract for scanning and indexing of documents to a single bidder at approximate cost of Rs26 billion.
The TIP in a letter written to Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Shaukat Tarin has said that NBP in prima facie has violated the PPRA Rules, 26, 35, 47 and has awarded contract to a single bidder, without declaring the information on the contract price and period of contract, alleged to be approximately Rs26 billion. The TIP has requested the Finance Minister to examine the allegations of the complainant and take action and re-invite bids if violations are proved to be correct.
According to the allegations reported by the complainant, the NBP had invited tenders NT-11/07/2019-2 for Documents Management System in August 2018. Eight bids were received on 17 November 2018, and bids were opened on the same date. After a lapse of 19 months, on 15th June 2020, NBP posted the evaluation report on PPRA website, requirement under PPRA rules No 35. Surprisingly out of eight bidders, 3 bidders did not submit bids, 4 bidders were disqualified with reason that they did not confirm to the specified requirement and a single bidder M/s ASC First Solution (Pvt) Ltd was declared as lowest evaluate bidder.
The TIP said that the rule according to PPRA Rules 2004, mandatory provisions have been violated in tender processing that include Rule 26 Bid validity Sub Section (2), which is in normal bids is 120 days, and in this tender, may have expired on 16 March 2019. It can only be extended in exceptional circumstances once only, that too for same period of 120 days, i.e. ending 15 July 2019
According to the TIP, Rule 35, Evaluation Report to be posted on PPRA website and shall include the Total Cost of Lowest Bid, which 13 not declared by NBP.
NBP has also to submit copy of the contract agreement to NAB under NAO 1999, Section 33 B, and also Checklist, which includes information on Contract Price, and Certificate of Principle Accounting Officer.