10 Mar 2014

No tender process before lucrative contracts awarded to Solomons MPs

10:43 am on 10 March 2014

A transparency group in Solomons Islands says the Government needs to be more up front about its contracts, after million-dollar contracts were awarded to two MPs.

The prominent MPs, Selwyn Riumana and Steve Abana, own ships that were awarded public contracts to embark on an electoral commission mission this week.

The Executive Officer of Transparency Solomon Islands, Daniel Fenua, says under the Government's procurement rules, contracts worth more than $68,500 US dollars must go through a competitive tender process and be approved by the Ministry of Finance's Central Tender Board.

Mr Fenua says the ship contracts were approved by the board, but there was no public awareness or advertising of tenders.

"Following the right process is not only about making decisions. This is involving a huge sum of money and the people really need to know and if you look at the Ministry of Finance website the information is very limited and the public needs to know why these two politicians got these two contracts."

Daniel Fenua.