NHA awards contracts in violation of rules


The National Highway Authority (NHA), violating the public procurement rules, awarded contracts amounting to Rs 674.415 million to various contractors, including FWO, without open tenders, resulting in losses to the national exchequer.
These irregularities were unearthed in a special audit report on the account of National Highway Authority (NHA) for the year 2011-12. In the report, it was exposed that Rs 68.623 million had been given to M/s AA associates for consultancy services for detailed design and construction supervision of a bridge linking Kandhkot Ghotki, Rs 10.200 million awarded to M/s Loya Associates for design update of a bridge over the River Chenab and its approach roads.
The audit report also revealed that Rs 151.934 million were awarded to NESPAK for design and construction supervision of additional carriageway Torkhum-Jalalabad Road, Rs 18.472 million were given to Engineering Associates fro the design of geometric improvement of Multan Inner Ring Road.
M/s engineering associates was awarded Rs 86.249 million for construction supervision of the inner city Ring Road Multan and Rs 275 million were given to FWO fro maintenance of the road from Jaglot to Skardu and Karakoram highway, the report revealed.
Official sources said that, according to the public procurement rules, any department should use open competitive bidding as the method of procurement for procurement of goods, services and works.
They said that any violation of this rule would be mis-procurement. Absence of open competition based on transparency deprives the entity of the advantage of competitive rates and denies a fair opportunity to other prospective bidders for their participation in the bidding process.
This violation occurred due to inadequate oversight mechanism for exercise of relevant internal controls.
The audit report recommended that matter be investigated and responsibility be fixed for violation of the rules and action initiated against those responsible for the lapse.
QAU facing water shortage: The water crisis has worsened in the Quaid-e-Azam University and its residential colonies where the Capital Development Authority (CDA) supplies water twice a week against the requirement of 1,000 gallons per day.
A couple of months ago, the civic agency provided water for two hours a day despite the shortages, but the supply has been remarkably reduced during this week.
Talking to this news agency, a reliable source said that the university administration time and again lodged written and verbal complaints to the civic agency, but the managers of the CDA always turn a deaf ear towards the situation.
“The administration would take every possible step to end the crisis and the vice chancellor would personally visit the CDA chairman’s office to request him for uninterrupted water supply, “the source added.
The source said that over 2,000 male and female students residing in the hostels and 5,000 day scholars spent a specified time in the university. He added that besides this number the situation is worse in the four residential colonies.
To a question the source said that experts belonging to varsity’s earth sciences department surveyed multiple areas within its jurisdiction but didn’t found under ground water anywhere.
He said that the administration currently using own sources like water tankers of its horticulture cell to provide water in the hostels.
Importantly, the source informed this scribe that on the other hand water theft is on the rise in adjacent rural areas of QAU. “Presently each slum house can avail an illegal water connection from 48 inches diameter supply line for just Rs. 5000, “he added.
He said that the QAU administration repeatedly requested the CDA to provide water from same supply line but of no veil.