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Finance and Planning Minister, Dr. Omar Davies, has said that steps would be taken to rectify identified deficiencies in the legislation governing the tendering, consideration and award of contracts.
Minister Davies made the announcement while closing the 2006/07 Budget Debates in Gordon House yesterday (May 10), in response to claims by Opposition Leader, Bruce Golding, that the procedures for the award of government contracts did not have the force of the law, and that there were no sanctions for breaches of the Contractor General’s Act, or for bypassing the National Contracts Commission.
“He is correct and we give the commitment that these issues will be addressed as these deficiencies limit the effectiveness of the Act,” the Finance and Planning Minister told the House.
Addressing calls for legislation, which would place constitutional limits on debts and deficits, Dr. Davies noted that while “no one could quarrel with the objective of placing a limit on debt as well as on the size of the deficit, to believe that legislation placed in the constitution was the answer, defied not only logic, but recent experiences.”
“The fact is that such an approach is antiquated,” the Finance and Planning Minister argued. He noted that the way to address the issue was not to implement legislation, but to instead look at “punishment of the domestic and external market”.
“That punishment will come through inability to raise loans or through the high rates of interest, which will have to be paid in order to raise money,” Dr. Davies explained.