$57,200 bike tender goes downhill

An officer with the National Parks Board (NParks) has been suspended from duty following a probe by the Ministry of National Development (MND).

And BikeHop, the vendor which sealed the deal to supply 26 bikes to NParks, has been advised to stop the cycling tours it organises for tourists.

The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) told The New Paper that such tours require a licence.

Its spokesman said: “In the case of BikeHop, an advisory has already been issued to the company.

STB will monitor the situation closely to ensure compliance by BikeHop and take enforcement actions as and when required.”

NParks bought the Brompton foldable bikes for its officers to use on patrols after a tender was issued in January.

The bikes cost $57,200 in total.

In a statement last night, MND said Minister Khaw Boon Wan called for an internal audit team to work with NParks to review the purchase last month.

It was to ascertain if the purchase was justified and to see if its procurement process could be improved.

The internal audit found that the reasons for purchasing foldable bikes to enhance work productivity of NParks’ field staff were valid, the statement said.

But the audit also uncovered some discrepancies which suggested “the possibility of bias in the procurement”, although the discrepancies were inconclusive by themselves.

The statement said: “MND has decided that the discrepancies were significant and warrant further investigation.

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