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Audit Bureau ‘centers’ on wastage of public money

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Oil company said to manipulate contracts

KUWAIT CITY, Jan 19, (Agencies): The Audit Bureau report which was issued recently centers on suspicions of waste of public money by the Kuwait Oil Company(KOC) related to several engineering and support group contracts for the inspection of wells which is seen as infringement on company’s funds, reports Al-Rai daily. The report stated the contracts were manipulated, specifically in the area of prices by the previous head contract work team by making modifications before presenting to the committees and were not included in the final value of the bids.

The report added the company’s management ignored errors and procedures approved in 24 contracts, which leaves no room for doubt that “this procedure is deliberate and not just a procedural error, which cost public large sums of money about 223.369 million dollars, for items that were not evaluated and approved by the committees. This reckless expenditure drained the contract budgets in large proportions.”

The report indicated the additional annexure were not counted among the estimated values of the contracts, as the company admitted in its responses to the Bureau’s inquiries not to specify the quantities and types of all items in the additional annexes, which gave the space for each contractor to set items completely different from the items submitted by the contractors.

The report considered that this procedure reflects the company’s lack of knowledge of its requirements and needs for items that are considered additional at the time of need and necessity for their use, as well as its failure to verify the prices of these items. The Bureau has requested legal measures to be taken regarding such practices that marred the mechanism of concluding contracts and the disbursement of sums owed to the person responsible for those contracts. According to Al-Rai the Kuwait Oil Company has formed a committee to look into the entire issue and is awaiting the results of the investigations.

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