Highway projects: Proper tender procedures followed - Johnston | Daily News

Highway projects: Proper tender procedures followed - Johnston

While refuting former minister Patali Champika Ranawaka’s allegations levelled against the Government on awarding projects and tenders without procurement, Roads and Highways, Ports and Shipping Minister Johnston Fernando firmly asserted that the Government had followed proper procedure when awarding tenders.

“Former Minister Ranawaka alleges that the Government has awarded highway construction projects without procurement. The Highways Ministry has paid special attention to the construction of roads in Sri Lanka since the incumbent Government assumed office. As the Minister in charge of the subject, I paid special attention to tenders that had been issued outside the system during the good governance period” he said.

Moreover, he said that under the guidance of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa, the present Government has put an end to unsafe bidding undertaken during the Good Governance period.

He added that at present, all road development activities are carried out following the Procurement Procedure. “Road construction contracts have been awarded to each company under the direct supervision of the President and the Prime Minister with transparency through the Cabinet of Ministers by all accepted procedures in the procurement process”.

“Former Minister Patali Champika accuses us of having awarded road construction projects to these companies through an informal procurement process. But he has forgotten that during their period, contracts for road development projects were given to the companies allegedly owned by former Cabinet Ministers," Minister Johnston Fernando said.

And also, the former Highway Ministers through their private secretaries, had asked investors to sign commissions before signing the projects. As a result, he has forgotten how many investors had been turned away from investing in the massive road development projects in the country,” he added.

“A good example is the fact that the Ministry of Highways and Road Development Authority during the former good governance regime had awarded contracts for government ministries without procurement or financial discipline to a local construction company owned by a former Minister.

The company is involved in the construction of the second section of the Central Expressway. The construction of the Expressway has also been delayed due to the delay caused by this company,” he said.

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