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Another raid on the Public Treasury?

The Ministry of Finance has issued a request for proposal (RFP) for a private firm to develop a specialized app for the government but it is rumored that a politically-connected company has already been identified - giving other businesses false hope.

The Ministry recently said it is seeking proposals “for a suitable entity with demonstrated local experience in Digital Wallet Development and related services to develop a specialized application for the government to utilize The Central Bank’s Sand Dollar Digital Currency for revenue collection and expenditure payments.”

However, based on the timeline for submission and the start date, it is glaringly obvious that the Minnis Administration has already selected the vendor it wants but issued an RFP just for show.

Interested applicants were given until March 1 to respond with an estimated project start date of March 29.

The project’s timeline is 3-4 weeks and the successful candidate will be contracted for three years with a 90-day option to terminate the agreement by either party.

The successful candidate will also be required to build the interoperable system for expenditure payments throughout the Government using Sand Dollar. This includes payments to local vendors, public sector payroll and all other expenditures throughout the Bahamas, but particularly Mayaguana, Crooked Island & Acklins.

Could it be just another scheme to put money in the pockets of this administration’s supporters and political donors ahead of the next election?

It wouldn’t be the first time the government has wasted taxpayer funds on its wealthy donors. The Ministry of Finance recently signed an agreement which will pay OMNI Financial Group - a group of rich FNM supporters - to collect fees on behalf of the Customs Department. The company is set to be paid $11 per transaction.

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