There is so much online and offline discussion on the topic and a whole pile of unanswered questions piling up when Dr. Teo HP promised an explanation. Unfortunately, the explanation was highly unsatisfactory and the unhappiness surround the issue rocketed. Singaporeans depend on town councils to provide essential services at an affordable cost would like more transparency and accountability on this matter and greater clarity and more data will certainly help us to make a better assessment.
It is unfortunate the threat of defamation lawsuits came so quickly when there are so many legitimate questions still waiting for answers. The concerns of Singaporeans have to be satisfactorily addressed otherwise there will be a further loss of trust.
In page 6 of today's The New Paper one of the companies that collected the tender document, Hutcabb Consulting, shed some light on what was in the documents. Hutcabb Consulting has an office located in Jalan Kilang and counts the Attorney-General Chamber and Ministry of Foreign Affairs as its clients:
Chief Executive of Hutcabb Consulting, Mr. Oliver Tian told The New Papar that his company did not bid for the software because the town councils did not provide sufficient information about it in the tender document.
"It was very hard to make a decision based on what was provided. After paying more than $200, we simply got a thin stack of documents and the town councils were unable to provide us with more information" - he said
- The New Paper, Pg 6, 5 Jan 2013.
For the tender process to work successfully and fairly, companies have to be provided sufficient information to put in a bid. In this case, the tender involves the purchase a custom software and specifications have to be sufficiently detailed so that companies can value the system and put in a competitive bid. Other netizens have found the tender notice[Link] to be vague and lacking in details. It is not clear if the termination clause was in the original tender document as a requirement or added to the contract after AIM won the tender.
There is a long list of questions that can be answered if the PAP govt has nothing to hide and make public all the relevant documents. This is a matter that affects many ordinary Singaporeans and they need to know is public interest has been served and all measures to safeguard their interests have been undertaken.