Police is not investigating St Vincent de Paul deal worth- €274m which is stated ‘illegal’ by NAO

Earlier, a NAO- National Audit Office report has stated that a €274 million deal to manage the St Vincent de Paul home for the elderly was illegal, and now the Police gave a statement that it is not going to investigate €274 million deal that NAO founded that it broke the law.

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines: Earlier, a NAO- National Audit Office report has stated that a €274 million deal to manage the St Vincent de Paul home for the elderly was illegal, and now the Police gave a statement that it is not going to investigate €274 million deal that NAO founded that it broke the law.

Last week, the NAO officials stated that “The €274m deal to build a kitchen and residential blocks at the state run house could be unreasonable as the Family Ministry, Department of Contracts and St Vincent de Paul had acted in breach of legislative provisions in the way they awarded the contract to the MHC and JCL Consortium.”

Police spokesperson on this asserted that “Police is not going to investigate this deal and the decision had been taken after conducting a meeting with NAO to discuss their report in suspect of this deal and police investigation, here at this level is not necessary.”

The consortium consist of the – James Caterers and a subsidiary of Silvio Debono’s DB Group.

The NAO found out that the consortium had been contracted following a bizarre tendering process in which applicants were asked to offer an unspecified additional investment as part of their proposal.

After winning the tender, the consortium’s – additional investment was modified to include construction of the two additional residential blocks, to be managed and provided for by the consortium itself.

The government had sought and obtained authorisation for that through citing reasons of utmost urgency. The NAO also found out that no such reasons existed and that the deal was opened up to the external competition.

NAO officials further stated, “Despite the huge amount is involved, the cabinet has not been asked to sign off the deal and the parliamentary secretaries responsible – initially Justyne Caruana and then Anthony Agius Decelis – had been “in clear breach of their duty” by failing to inquire into the regularity of the deal.”

Where on the other hand, the Prime Minister Robert Abela this week disapproved of the way the deal was handled and cited, “It should have been presented to the cabinet. Abela was not prime minister at the time.”
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