by Linda Straker
- Area in St Patrick currently affected by coastal erosion
- Erosion responsible for seawater flowing more inland affecting at least 8 families
- “No objection” approval from Procurement Commission needed to engage coastal engineering company
The Ministry of Infrastructure is awaiting a “no objection” approval from the Procurement Commission to engage a coastal engineering company that will embark on a study in the St Patrick area currently affected by coastal erosion.
“The reason why we are seeking a no objection for that company to proceed is because there was not a tender because of the emergency situation in terms of the coastal area,” Infrastructure Minister Norland Cox told reporters during the weekly post-cabinet briefing on 19 January 2021.
He explained that the company has already done some preliminary work in that area, so they were far advanced in the terms of understanding the area affected. The ongoing erosion is responsible for seawater flowing more inland and at least 8 families have been relocated from a coastal community having been directly affected by the inflow of the water into the land space.
“They had submitted those preliminary work sometime earlier when we had The Breakwater Restoration work and so because it’s a sole source request and it’s for emergency purposes, we have to get procurement to sign off on that, do the due diligence and give the okay for us to proceed.” Cox explained the study will last for about 3 months but refused to disclose the name of the coastal company because the procurement commission is yet to give the “No Objection” order.
Under the procurement law, all government purchasing must be tendered out and bids reviewed in accordance with terms of reference. However, the same law makes an exception for sole sourcing when it is recognised that the service requested is of an emergency nature and it is provided by a single supplier or provider.