Slovak Education Ministry disputes fine levied by Public Procurement Office

The Education Ministry has appealed the decision of the Public Procurement Office (ÚVO), which fined the ministry €140,000 for violating the law when it awarded contracts for printing and supplying textbooks, the SITA newswire reported.

The Education Ministry has appealed the decision of the Public Procurement Office (ÚVO), which fined the ministry €140,000 for violating the law when it awarded contracts for printing and supplying textbooks, the SITA newswire reported.

“We consider it absurd to announce a tender for additional printing of a textbook that already exists,” said Education Minister Ján Mikolaj (SNS) on Thursday, April 15. He is convinced that procurement office must accept this as his department proceeded in line with the copyright.

The spokeswoman of the ÚVO, Helena Fialová, confirmed that the office received the appeal against its decision on April 6. The authority of the first instance, which issued the decision, can decide to accept the appeal. If it does not do so, it has to pass on the appeal to a second instance authority within 30 days of receiving the appeal.

In late March, the Public Procurement Office fined the Education Ministry €140,000. The ministry was sanctioned for having violated of the law on contracts for printing and supplying textbooks concluded on June 26, 2008 and July 3, 2008. ÚVO explained that the ministry applied an exception to the law on procurement, which, however, does not pertain to
purchase of textbooks but applies exclusively to acquisition of library funds.

UVO set the amount of the fine according to the contractual price of the order in question – amounting to 5 percent of the contractual price. This means that the ministry unlawfully selected suppliers of an order for over €2.8 million.

Source: SITA

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.

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