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The Minister of Finance and Economic Cooperation (MoFEC) formed a committee to solve a disagreement between Transnational Computer Technology (TCT) and MoFEC a few months ago but the company says they are still waiting for a solution.
TCT, a company based in the US, was assigned to undertake the pilot Integrated Financial Management Information Systems (IFMIS), integrating the activity of the state organizations under one network. However, they say they have not been paid for services they provided years ago.
“We have delivered our claim to Abraham Tekeste (PhD), Minister of MoFEC and although we didn’t talk to him personally we know he established a committee to look at the case,” a representative of TCT told Capital.
In addition to being concerned about the committee’s lack of action they feel some members could be biased.
“We have concerns about the members in terms of neutrality,” the representative explained.
“We want to be paid for the service that we provided and we also think some of the actions taken by ministry staff were illegal,” he added.
The company wants USD 7 million for the service it gave to MoFEC.
The case is also being evaluated by the Attorney General Arbitration board.
“We prefer a solution based on negotiations,” Mengistu Araya, representative of TCT, told Capital.
The two bodies also didn’t agree about how the IFMIS project rollout should be implemented.
TCT installed the 2010 pilot and recurrent service until 2015 in nine federal and regional offices. They argued that they had won the bid and began negotiation during the previous bidding process even though MoFEC officials did not accept their bid. The project was delayed and the reason for that delay has been disputed by both parties.
Last fiscal year a bid for the IFMIS project at 125 public institutions was floated, but TCT refused to participate in the bid.
At the time it claimed that the bidding committee of the ministry discriminated and defamed TCT thus breaking the procurement and consumer protection law.
The company officials said that TCT officially asked representatives of MoFEC to give them all the documents and information dispersed to other bidders.
“They did not give us all the documents that they provided to other bidders, which is discrimination,” they claimed.
The letter sent by Mesfin Workneh, Director of the Information System Administration Directorate of MoFEC, to other bidders weeks before the bid opening stated that this was a defamation for TCT.
Mesfin’s letter sent via email ridiculed TCT and insisted other bidders continue with the process.
The email copy that Capital obtained stated that it is a simple nightmare and illusion of the Transnational Computer Technology (TCT Company), to be the sole owner of the project without any competition, which is contrary to the government rules and regulations.
Capital’s was unable to reach Dr. Abraham by phone.