The plague

Kuensel featured this advertisement yesterday. Read it, and see what’s wrong.

I, like the friend who showed me this notification, found it funny that RITH would invite bids to produce the plague. But we all know that what RITH really wants is a plaque to commemorate the inauguration of the institute. Funny. And no harm done.

But look at the notification again. Look at it closely. To be awarded the work, one must be a registered license holder and pay Nu 200 for a set of bidding documents. The bidding documents will be sold from 17th May to 31st May during office hours.

The bidding documents will, no doubt, spell out many more conditions that bidders must fulfill. A committee will study all the bids. And another committee will award the work to one lucky bidder.

And what is the work? To produce a plaque. The advertisement itself could cost more than the plaque. Add to that the many hours that the many officials and the many businessmen have put into this endeavor, and you end up with a very expensive plaque. Expensive, but not necessarily good.

Our financial system must be tight. But the system should not be counterproductive. For small projects – like this one, to produce a simple plaque – excessive and cumbersome procedures add to the administrative burden and make a mockery of efficiency, transparency and accountability. Now that’s not funny. Because that, like the plague, can cause a lot of harm.

 

 

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  1. TYPICAL PROCEDURE says:

    I AM NOT SURPRISED AT ALL WITH THE NOTIFICATION. IT IS A TYPICAL CASE. IF THE CLIENT DIRECTLY GIVES TO ONE PLAQUE MAKER.. RAA WILL SAY IT IS CORRUPTION.. THE DEALING PERSON WILL GET FIXED WITH MEMOES.. IT WILL HAMPER HIS CAREER…. ACC MIGHT INVESTIGATE.. SO WHY TO TAKE THE RISK?..RATHER GO FOR THE TYPICAL PROCUREMENT MANUAL.. AFTER ALL IT IS GOVT MONEY…..

    ONE DAY WE MIGHT INVITE MICKNESEY TO ADVISE ON HOW TO SOLVE THESE ISSUES AS WELL…

  2. I was told that the Government(Finance Ministry) has revised and updated the Procurement Manual for Works and Goods. I don’t know what they have done with the revised manual. Maybe, they have neglected the process and procedures for procurement of small works and government agencies are following the old system. For a small works like this one, the head of the agencies should have authority to procure directly through formation of committee.When Government of Bhutan could give Nu.50,000,000(somebody can correct me, figure could me more) financial power to Punatshangchhu MD to award works directly without calling tenders why can’t the Government give Nu.50,000 financial power to Head of our agencies to award small works directly. This shows that the government have more trust to outsiders than our own people.

  3. Exactly the problem with the “system”…as OL pointed out, in the end the process will be more expensive than the final product,and this is just one of the countless others. Many a times agencies have been “fixed” by the RAA and and other over-sight agencies for showing initiative and not “going by the book”…Now things have reached such a stage, as the advertisement above,…no one wants to take charge/ initiative …everything has to be by the book and committee..after all thats what RAA and related agencies want…

    Somethings needs to be done in earnest before the “system” overpowers all enthusiastic, service-delivery oriented, professional individuals…at the moment it is like fighting against the current…you take initiatives, you get “fixed”…

    OL…could this be an agenda for Question Hour session??

  4. Says a lot about the meticulous selection process in recruiting staff for a job and selected from a 100 odd applicants! And of course, that office doesn’t have a boss to check on materials to be given to media houses for publication! Small, compact and efficient civil service! We see it too frequently such efficiency!!

  5. Aren’t we already too plagued?

  6. Yeh I agree with all the above comments. Our bureaucracy has become over bureaucratic. I wonder how the G2C elite committee left this out -the PROCESS. If we diagonise the problem in the PROCESS half the job is as good as done.
    Afterall who cares, it is the government money that is going. Any initiative you take are taken negatively by the ACC and RAA.
    So guys keep doing the the minimum. Never take risks. Let the bureaucracy trust the service of outsiders and let the money go out.
    Cheers

  7. Your Excellency,

    I take this opportunity to congratulate you on your being elected as the President of the PDP. Although it is unlikely that you will win the next elections, I hope that your party comes back as the Opposition Party but with a larger number of MPs in the Parliament.

  8. I am pretty sure that PDP has a chance to win in the next election. The rupee problem and the DPTs inability to face the RMA governors unsound monetary policy that put the whole nation in jeopardy will definitely dent DPT. There are enough people effected out there that are waiting to show DPT how unsound they are as far as taking responsibility is concerned.

  9. I think the system of awarding contracts purely based on cost rather than credentials is wrong and this system needs to be corrected in order to so that the society does not gets a substandard road, schools, medicine etc etc.

  10. Lhendup says:

    Dear OL,
    Congratulations on being elected as the party president.

    Now, there is a bigger story than the “Plague” for you to follow up on – Today’s Kuensel print edition mentions about two doctors being retained while the third was suspended. How stupid is this decision?

  11. I think this is the most stupid decision made by the Ministry of Health, Lyonpo Zangley and the ACC. We should not tolerate corruption no matter who important the person is for the country. Just because there is a shortage of doctors we cannot retained them. There is a acute shortage of teachers, engineers, lawyers and what if they also misuse public fund. Are we going to pardon them just like the two doctors? Lyonpo Zangley should have thought about this instead of supporting the two corrupted doctors.

  12. I heard that the TCB and RITH is now delinked from RCSC and made autonomous for professionalism and efficiency.

  13. Dear OL, congradulations for being elected as the PDP president. Hope, you will do better than your predecessor. Should you become the ruling party, you will realise whatever loopholes you have found with the present government. Things are easier said than done.

  14. the evolution of ‘q’ to ‘g’…alphabets caught between Kuensel and Time..

  15. “In 2010, we were placed at 126 out of 186 countries.

    In 2011, we plummeted to 146 out of 183 countries.”

    Lyonpo, people make mistakes. Please refer your article ‘Really Important Business’.

    Your usage of the word ‘plummeted’ (as in the comparison quoted above) is also wrong. :–)

  16. refer to your article? :–)

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