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7/05/2012

What is $57,200?



When $600,000 was dismissed off as peanuts, why are netizens screaming over $57,200? The amount was spent on 26 foldable Brompton bikes that NParks had purchased. Many felt that it was excessive and unnecessary when a $500 bike is already a damn good one and a $1,000 bike is a luxury. A $2,000 bike is just inexplicable for a govt organization to splurge using public money. And poor Khaw Boon Wan now had came out to defend this purchase as reasonable. And this is going to cause more ire among the bikers who knew the value and quality of bikes. Best advice is not to explain.

But spending $57,200 is really nothing, not even a drop in the ocean. Not even half a month’s pay to many. Why the who ha? Personally, as a low wage worker, $500 for a bike is definitely too much for me to pay. Then it is all relative isn’t it? What is a lot to the losers is, yes, nothing to those who are used to spend millions and hundreds of millions.

The netizens are also complaining why a tender for 26 bikes only attracted one bid. Is it that the tender contract was too small, no supplier was interested, no one could meet the stringent specifications, or no one knew about the tender except for one? Many questions are being raised on this peculiar incident, just like the designer chairs for, was it MOM or NTU? Such small matters and small amount of money could not register in the memory of most people, not even my elephant memory. Of course dementia is starting to gnaw throw the thick skull.

My conclusion, the amount is just too small, too petty for any suppliers of foldable bikes to be bothered to submit their tenders. So it ended up with only one hungry tender, and according to civil service procedures, since there was only one tender, it was proper to accept the tender. Case closed. Let’s move on.

For those suppliers who were sleeping and did not know that there was such a tender, it is their fault. Then again, it must be the small sum that kept them away. In an exceedingly rich country when every mention of money is in the millions, when people conveniently asked, ‘What is $10m?’, what is $57,200? No case lah. Such a small matter is like making a mountain out of a mole hill. There are more important things to worry about.

34 comments:

Anonymous said...

Why not just a normal blardy bike like everyone else ?? Foldable for Phuk ?? No place to park isit ??

KBH - Shake head , $5 CABG , we haven't forgotten horrr

Anonymous said...

Question : do these park rangers bring the foldable bikes home on the MRT and buses and that's why they need a foldable bike ??

KBH- very thin ice , sinkies are stoopid ,they accept your crap explanation wholesale. Nice job !

Got more crap ??

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Alamak, I thought my explanation was so brilliant and you called it crap. Didn't you know that Sinkies will be very agreeable to this kind of reasoning and logic?

theonion said...

Redbean

That is the problem, who wants to go thru tender for such a small sum.

This arises from the SLA fiasco where procedures were tightened but could lead to such outcomes as now the amounts subject to tender are now reduced and need preselection

As such tender rules are across the board although different areas of expertise.

Anonymous said...

Someone suggested Ferraris but that is over doing it. There are so many parks here and all interconnected. The rangers should be provide with SUV to move from parks to parks. Bicycles under the hot sun not suitable and they may get heat strokes.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Hi onion, it was reported that some suppliers did not even know there was such a tender. That is another side of the story.

theonion said...

Redbean

Because of the SLA case, officers are afraid to tell friends of business opportunities because they may later have to answer questions from public, CPIB, etc even if no actual benefit derived.

So it becomes not my problem, so welcome to extreme Bureaucracy 101

Anonymous said...

To KBW $57200 = $5 X 11440 CABGs

RB , this is no small change , 11440 CABGs can be carried out for that sum of money .

This is not small change horrr !!!

26 Bikes versus 11400 Coronary Bypass operation


Can explain the economics ?

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Agreed. To a low wage earner like me, this is big money. But not everyone is a low wage earner and they would not see things from the viewpoint of a low wage earner.

If I can remember the procedures of a tender, it is first announced in the media with a call for tender to be fair to all. The purchasing dept may then inform their regular suppliers of the tender once it is public.

In a case of only one tender, and if the above were done, they could accept or call for a re tender and try to get at least 3 quotes. Only in very exceptional cases would one quote be accepted as it would raise a lot of eye brows.

Seriously, to many bike suppliers, $57k contract is still a big contract to grab. Bicycle contract of this size is rare and can be considered as big. Many will be rushing to submit their tenders.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Oh, it is foolish to accept the reasoning that no one is interested because it is too small.

theonion said...

Redbean

By the way, you may say budget to be set, in that case, the correct person to answer is the Head of Department not the Minister unless you expect him to be all seeing and all knowing aka Tian Gong

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

The fact that a minister had to answer will invite more curiosity. Why should a minister be answering for a departmental decision? This is like Lui Tuck Yew trying to answer for the SMRT. Is he the CEO of SMRT?

Where is the CEO of SMRT and why isn't he doing the explanation? Incapable?

And we don't pay millions for a minister to be a CEO of a private company and to run the company or even to run NParks.

Maybe ministers have too much time in hand or the CEOs do not have the confidence to answer for his organisation, or not allowed to.

patriot said...

It is good for any ministry to splurge, this will boost bizness in Sin and the economy will grow by leaps and bounds.

KBW is not just pious, he is clever.

patriot

Anonymous said...

Still wondering, why only one tender bid?

Anonymous said...

Maybe they have not called a tender before, or the officer in charge is a fresh graduate, no working experience and didn't know how the tendering process works and how vendors could apply all kinds of tricks knowing that tenderor will give it to the lowest bid if all things are equal.

Anonymous said...

Just shove him back to where he came from ..... no , not his previous place of work and ... yes , I do mean matilah's favourite place.

Matilah_Singapura said...

$2000 for a bike is reasonable lah.

Lucky they didn't spend $10k or more on each bike.

Taxpayers money lah. No problem. Spend lah. The money is "sunk" already. People have no say anymore.

So buy what you like.

Matilah gives you permission ;-)

Matilah_Singapura said...

They should have bought some of these:

http://www.gizmag.com/go/1192/

http://bmw-bikes.net/

Fuck the foldable bikes. Small wheels are for pussies.

Tax payer's should get the maximum value for their selfless contributions. Only the best will do. Must maintain the Singapore standard ;-)

Anonymous said...

I think it is extravagant. He or she who bought it and the head who approve it should be demoted. But it is stupid for anyone to link it to KBW.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

True, it is not Boon Wan's fault. But to come out and defend it, he becomes part of the deal. To the public this is obviously unacceptable and Boon Wan is saying it is acceptable. Now he will be dragged into the shit.

Anonymous said...

I too thought it's strange that the Minister comes out to defend this.. Well if he's so keen to do it, be prepared to answer every single question we have on his procurement process

Anonymous said...

Haha, oh how you loved it.. next time you should look at govt tender notices more, be part of it.

Anonymous said...

He has committed to a position, that there is nothing wrong with this buy. Difficult part, everyone is seeing wrongdoing. But he govt, he is right.

Anonymous said...

You see wrong doing,I don't see anything wrong. Good bikes last longer, offer better value for money in the long term. Who knows, maybe the purchaser is a supporter of the opposition?

The said...

/// NParks "had no particular brand in mind"... ///

Yeah right. What's wrong with a $100 bike. If you pay 22x for a bike, of course brand does not matter.

As an analogy, most of us have a $100,000 car. Suppose NP buy some for $2,200,000 each. They can truly say brand does not matter. At $2.2m for a car, I also have no particular brand in mind.

And why the need for foldable bikes. Why put them in a van and then cycle?

Anonymous said...

The monkeys will explain every way to their advantage.

Anonymous said...

It is so scary that Khaw Boon Wan cannot see anything wrong with this purchase. Really frightening.

The whole game will come to a quick end soon.

Anonymous said...

You hope so but it is not going to end anytime soon.

Anonymous said...

Relax lah, Chan Chun Sing will make up for it. He has already promised no over spending for the SEA games.

Saycheese

Anonymous said...

In some countries, a minister saying such a buy is ok would be forced to resign.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

A prudent and reasonable purchase for a public agency should not cost more than $500 for a bike. A $300 heavy duty bike should be more than adequate.

How much did the SPF pay for their police patrol bikes?

This is the view from an average Sinkie.

Anonymous said...

Right. So when is your turn to become Minister ?

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

You should ask the dumb Sinkies.

Anonymous said...

Someone should ask further clarification in parliament session. Wah Khaw has been making statements regarding HDB, Health cost, etc without using his right side of his body