Abhisit govt 'was asked to split up project'
A Department of Special Investigation (DSI) probe into alleged bid collusion and fraud in a project to build police stations and officer accommodation has found that eight companies submitted a letter to then prime minister Abhisit Vejjajiva and deputy premier Suthep Thaugsuban objecting to a plan to award the projects to a single contractor.DSI chief Tarit Pengdith said yesterday the letter showed that the firms - which included controversial bid-winner PCC Development and Construction Co (PCC) - urged Abhisit not to approve the police department's plan to award a single contract for the project, and to hold separate bids for each of the nine police regions. The firms said awarding a single contract would put local construction contractors at a disadvantage.
The document said the merged bid was unrealistic, as one contractor couldn't construct all the buildings nationwide at the same time.
The DSI would summon Abhisit to explain the facts soon, Tarit said.
He said the DSI had received complaints from five subcontractors of PCC, as the firm allegedly failed to pay them, while presenting work progress reports to the Royal Thai Police in order to receive payment. As a result, the DSI started a fraud probe against PCC and yesterday invited National Police chief Adul Saengsing-kaew to file a complaint as damaged party.
The DSI will invite former police chiefs Pol General Patcharawat Wongsuwan, Pol General Prateep Tanprasert and Pol General Wichean Potephosree to provide information before summoning Suthep, Tarit said.