Teixeira during a press conference on Saturday expressed worry over the Public Procurement Commission’s (PPC) response via letter to requests for investigations to be launched into an aspect of the Demerara Harbour Bridge project, the Durban Park Project and the Sussex Drug Bond deal.
Teixeira had asked the Commission, a body which has oversight for all procurement transactions, to probe the sole-sourcing of a Dutch firm to conduct a feasibility study of the Demerara Harbour Bridge. Opposition parliamentarian Bishop Juan Edghill had also written the Commission requesting an investigation into the procurement breaches in the Durban Park Project and the rental of the Sussex Street Drug Bond.
The response from the PPC however stated that “Please be advised that the Commission has noted the contents of your letter and we will follow up with the entity’s involved to address the concerns raised. This will be done in keeping with the relevant articles of the constitution and within the confines of our work programme and available resources.”
Teixeira said the issue to be flagged is the phrase “within the confines of our work programme and available resources” as she explained that the message gives the impression that the PPC will not be prioritorising the PPP/C’s requests.
“From my interpretation … they’re not going to look at our stuff” but Teixeira argued that “the Constitution makes it absolutely clear that once there’s a complaint, the PPC has to investigate it … it cannot say that well ‘we have a work programme that says we have ten other items and we have to do this first or that we don’t have enough resources’. This is unacceptable.”
Former Attorney General, Mr. Mohabir Anil Nandlall, who was also present at the press conference, said that the PPC must understand that it must also be accountable and transparent.
According to Nandlall, he “cannot understand that a creature like the PPC having anything else more important to do” than to investigate complaints or concerns raised about public procurement processes.
Nonetheless, the PPP/C members plan on constantly reminding the Commission of their concerns until an investigation is launched into each.