Auditor-General urges proper tender processes

Police Special Response Unit officers at the checkpoint in Nakasi. Picture: JONA KONATACI/FILE

The Fiji Police Force paid more than $50,000 to four entities for the supply of meals for persons in custody without tender board exemption approval, the Auditor-General’s 2019 Audit Report on General Administration Sector read.

The force incurred a total of $519,584 for meal costs in 2019, including $89,000 to the Police Officers Mess.

“The findings indicate absence of proper planning by the force to ensure that proper tender processes are followed for procurement of goods and services over $50,000,” the Office of the Auditor-General (OAG) stated.

“The possible existence of conflict of interest in the supply of meals by the Fiji Police Officers Mess cannot be ruled out.

“The force should ensure that proper procurement processes are followed by calling for tender for the supply of meals and owners, trustees and beneficiaries of the Fiji Police Officers Mess are fully disclosed and any conflict of interest in procurement made and is declared and dealt with as appropriate.”

The Fiji Police Force stated the meal costs increased because of more persons held in custody.

“If expenses exceed the threshold of $50,000 in a year, tender will be called to attract potential vendors to supply meals in those areas.

“If expenses level remain below $50,000, competitive quotes will be obtained from potential suppliers and selection of supplier will be then made.”

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