JIS News

The Government has reported that for the first time since it started awarding contracts to supply textbooks to primary schools, the books were delivered early.
Responding to questions posed by Opposition Senator, Bruce Golding in the Senate on Friday, October 17, Leader of Government Business, Senator Burchell Whiteman said the majority of the books were delivered before the specified time with the others to be delivered by October 17, this year.
“The time specified in the contract for completion of delivery is October 13, 2003, the contractor had completed delivery of the textbooks to all schools in all parishes with the exception of St. Andrew. In the case of St. Andrew, the schools not yet supplied are in the rural parts of the parish. It is expected that delivery will be completed on Friday, October 17, 2003,” he said.
State Minister in the Ministry of Education, Senator Noel Monteith pointed out that the contractor had completed the production of the books in August and delivered to all schools by September, except for those in rural St. Andrew.
“This is the first time in the history of all offices that we have been able to complete distribution so early in the year,” he noted.
Von Hoffman Corporation, an overseas-based company was awarded the contract over local companies to supply textbooks to primary schools. The Government had pointed out that local suppliers had failed in the past to honour the terms of the contract, as they did not deliver the books on time.
The overall contract was valued at over $51 million for the production of 2.2 million textbooks under the Primary Schools Textbooks Programme. So far, the Government has paid out over $36 million to the company to supply the books.

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