Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Dubious claims, fake receipts uncovered in uniform and shoes purchase at Health Ministry

The Malaysian Insider
Health Ministry staff filed dubious claims totalling more than double the market price for the tailoring of long sleeve tops and pants, backed by receipts from outlets that did not exist, the Attorney-General (AG) report revealed.
They also submitted claims in excess of RM200,000 for shoes, RM8,000 to RM9,000 for overcoats and up to RM2,800 for baju kurung.
In 2011, all uniformed staff were given three pieces of cloth to be tailored for outfits relevant to their jobs. The tailoring charges can be claimed as long as it does not exceed RM230 each and supported by an official receipt.
On top of that, since March last year, the ministry's staff were entitled to a RM150 claim for shoes, also by submitting an official receipt.
However, any excess will have to be borne by the staff.
The report noted that 1,014 Health ministry staff were found to have submitted fake receipts to claim for tailoring and the purchase of shoes.
Many of the premises stated on the receipts were either non-existent or without complete addresses and with inaccurate telephone numbers.
The report noted that 922 staff from 10 hospitals, health departments and other health ministry divisions submitted fictitious claims totalling RM545,105 for the tailoring of long sleeve tops and long pants, when the market price is between RM146,340 and RM200,780.
For the tailoring of overcoats, 95 staff from eight of the ministry's hospitals, agencies and departments submitted claims totalling RM5,080 when the market price is between RM2,114 and RM3,420, resulting in a difference of between RM1,660 and RM2,866.
It was also found that 721 staff from eight hospitals, agencies and departments submitted claims totalling RM210,002.76 for the purchase of footwear but the market price for the entire order is only between RM2,710 and RM3,280.
"Therefore, the total dubious claims for these shoes are between RM206,723 and RM207,293," said the report.
In its reply to the discrepancies above, the ministry had stated that there was confusion on the maximum amount of claims allowed for the attire.
The report also chided the ministry for paying RM320,000 to two companies to carry out health campaigns via Facebook and Twitter.
It awarded a RM199,068 contract to Eficaz Media to run an anti-smoking campaign called Tak Nak Merokok on Facebook and another RM120,500 to Astonish View to run Kempen Intervensi Penyakit Tidak Berjangkit (Intervention Campaign for Non-Contagious Diseases) on both Facebook and Twitter.
"The scope of work for both jobs are nearly the same but the price difference is 68% at RM78,568," it noted.
The report stated that Eficaz Media was appointed for a period of six months, between July and December 2011, to run the Facebook page. Payment was made based on the number of "Likes" recorded, which was set at 100,000.
However, by July 2012, the number of "Likes" had dropped by 3.58% or 3,460 and after the contract ended, the page was not updated.
In reply, the ministry said that it would update its work specifications and tendering process.
It also pledged to update its Facebook page and take steps to boost its number of "Likes". - October 1, 2013.

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