NWC – Poor Procurement Leading to Millions in Increased Costs

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Auditor General's Findings

The Auditor General’s Department undertook a Performance Audit of the National Water Commission’s Contract and Procurement Management of Capital Projects in 2017.

Most notably from the report, the AuGD found deficiencies in the scoping, execution and monitoring for 17 contracts, valued at J$1.8 billion and US$38.6 million, which resulted in increased costs of J$667 million and US$6.2 million respectively. These contracts did not meet the stipulated deadlines and resulted in an estimated combined time overrun of 126 months.

The AuGD also noted instances where contracts secured directly using the Emergency Contracting Methodology, did not commence until over a year after the contract engagement. This was contrary to expectations for emergency contracts and could have suggested an intent to circumvent GoJ’s Procurement Guidelines.

In addition, the NWC did not always scope projects and execute contracts in a timely manner, despite its financial constraints and responsibility to stakeholders. NWC incurred increased costs totalling $111.5 million for five projects and did not always rectify environmental concerns on a timely basis as required by citizens or stipulated by the Court.

Further, NWC’s monitoring of capital projects was not always effective, as in some instances, work was either rejected at the end of contract periods for failure to meet the required standards or were found to be incomplete. Of the contracts reviewed, the AuGD found instances of inadequate monitoring and oversight resulting in missed deadlines, incomplete works and increased costs.

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Permanent Secretary (current): Audrey Sewell

Breach Category: Procurement & Contract Management

Permanent Secretary (at breach):

Breach Type: Poor procurement planning

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