The contract system for public utility projects
Prof. Rahmat Karim Baig
Funds allocated to public representatives are divided and contractors bid among themselves for many of the schemes. The present system is too poor and unreliable. The e-bidding and the below system introduced by the present government is one of the disputable methods.
Under this system, the contractors get a project by going to 47 percent below and out of a sum of one million only 530,000 are left for the project. The authorities approve such a low bid and expect the contractor to do the said work according to the standards.
No contractor can complete a project of one million with a sum of Rs530,000 which also includes office expenses that go to the pockets of the engineer concerned, the clerks, beside the rest for the contractor. All such contracts are given by the main contractor to the second one who pays some of it to the original contractor so the amount for the project goes very much down and the work remains poor and substandard.
I have never seen any sub-engineer visiting the site to check the work and final shape of the project. This is a very bad practice and encourages corruption. The sub-let system is the worst practice and whoever has introduced it has done a great disservice to the projects and, in general, to the public who may avail of it.
I have personally seen these things with my eyes and condemned the sub-contractors as well as the main contractors but they are shame-proof and the officials concerned are free to play with the government funds and have been eating the amount illegally i.e. HARAM and destroying their own future as well as the future of their children.
The department must supervise the system and like the education supervisors, there should be a team of inspectors to visit the project sites and get the work done according to BOQs.