Close to $2 Billion in drugs and medical supplies are still to be delivered to the Ministry of Health for 2021, the Auditor General, Deodat Sharma, disclosed in his report on the Public Accounts of Guyana for 2021.
“Amounts totalling $1.915 billion of drugs and medical supplies paid for had not yet been received,” the Auditor General said in the report which was laid before the National Assembly today.
It was explained that only $9.2M of the $1.9 Billion advanced to suppliers was covered by bank guarantees and as such, the Ministry could find it difficult in recovering the difference if suppliers default on their deliveries.
According to the Auditor General’s Report, the Ministry of Health received $14 Billion in 2021 for the procurement of drugs and medical supplies, with New GPC Incorporated receiving the lion’s share of some $6.3 Billion.
“The sum of $7.306 billion was allotted under Line Item 6221 – Drugs and Medical Supplies. Allotment transferred to this Line Item totalled $80.708M, while Supplementary Allotment amounted to $6.683 billion. The total revised allotment amounted to $14.070 billion. This represents a seventy-three percent increase in allotment, when compared to the previous year’s expenditure of $8.122 billion,” the Auditor General explained.
It was noted that contracts totalling $7.314B were entered with New GPC.
However, while the company was paid some $6.631B, over $478.96M in supplies were not delivered.
Another company, Western Scientific Company, received contracts totaling $3.213 Billion from the Ministry of Health for the supply of drugs and medical supplies. However, over $695.761M in supplies were still to be delivered for 2021.
It was noted that some 94,464 doses of Sputnik were not delivered but the Health Ministry was able to get a refund.
“During the year under review, the Ministry ordered a total of 400,000 vials of components one and two Sputnik Vaccines during the height of the COVID-19 Pandemic. The vaccines were procured using the sole sourcing method due to the nature of the emergency. An amount of 305,536 was delivered, leaving a balance of 94,464 not delivered. The sum of $409.041M was refunded to the Consolidated Fund in respect of the undelivered items,” the Auditor General explained.
A special audit is also being done on the procurement of the COVID-19 vaccines.
Meanwhile, the Auditor General’s Office also pointed out that the Health Ministry had initially received $5.291B for capital expenditure, plus an additional supplementary budget of $801.1M.
By the end of the year, more than $1.6 Billion was not spent.
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