Dr Teo Ho Pin issued a statement about the AIM transaction in response to media queries last night. The Online Citizen has already explained the problems with the transaction. To reiterate, these are the problems:
a) The glaring conflict of interest, in PAP-controlled Town Councils awarding a key contract to a PAP-owned company.
b) The failure by the PAP-controlled Town Councils to ask for a performance bond or banker’s guarantee from a $2 company that was buying and licensing-back a mission-critical piece of software.
c) The absolute lack of detail in the tender notice, and the reported lack of detail in the tender document that cost $214 to obtain.
d) The apparent discrepancy between the date on which AIM submitted its bid (20 July 2010) and the stated closing date of the tender period (14 July 2010), and whether the proper process for extending the tender period had been followed.
e) The finding that the Town Council Management System was obsolete and needed replacement in 2010, when it continues to be used, and hence presumably perfectly functional, in 2013.
f) The long delay in replacing the supposedly obsolete TCMS, with the PAP-controlled Town Councils not even having selected a vendor 2.5 years after deciding that it was necessary to replace the TCMS.
g) The payment of the management fee of $33,150 to AIM, and how the incurring of this obligation was beneficial to the residents of the PAP-controlled Town Councils.
h) The failure by Dr Teo and Mr Chandra Das to disclose the payment of this management fee to AIM at the earliest possible opportunity, especially when they were highlighting the “savings” of $8,120 from selling the TCMS to AIM and licensing it back.
i) The lack of information on how the management fee of $33,150 paid to AIM was used by AIM.
j) The lack of independence in having the Ministry of National Development review the AIM transaction, as MND is the same body that oversees Town Councils
k) The continued lack of information from the PAP about the companies that it owns, what they do, the persons who benefit from their operations, and their business dealings (if any) with PAP-controlled Town Councils and government agencies, in particular the previous contracts between AIM and PAP-controlled Town Councils that Mr Das has alluded to.
Dr Teo has so far failed to address or even acknowledge these problems. TOC will send a copy of this statement to Dr Teo. We look forward to, but will not hold our breaths waiting for, the statement by Dr Teo Ho Pin in response to new media queries.