‘BD23,000 tender’ to hire cars with drivers for House deputy speakers
The Council of Representatives has reportedly allocated a monthly amount of BD658 to rent two cars with chauffeurs for the first and second deputy speakers of the House for the next three years, despite the fact that both MPs receive a monthly car allowance of BD750. This came in the reply of the Council Speaker Fawzia Zainal following an inquiry submitted by MP Fadhel Al Sawwad to clarify over the allocation of two cars to the first and second deputy speakers.
In her reply, Ms Zainal confirmed that the tender for allocating two vehicles for the first and second deputy speakers has been awarded for BD23,000 for the next three years to the best bid in terms of cost and technical specifications. Ms Zainal also confirmed in her reply that the car allowance disbursed to both lawmaker continues.
She said: “The House of Representatives is obliged to pay the monthly remuneration and allowances stipulated in the decree-law on determining the allowances of the chairpersons, both deputy speakers and members of both Shura Council and the Council of Representatives, including the car allowance of BD750 that is stipulated in Article 3.”
“The Council is committed to the circular of Finance Ministry on the appropriations of regulations and instructions for the implementation of the state budget for the fiscal years 2019-2020, and therefore verified the provision of funds before proceeding to launch an internal tender procedure to rent the cars,” the Chairwoman further clarified. Ms Zainal’s reply showed that the cost of both cars has been calculated to be BD1,300 in 2019, BD7,800 in 2020 and 2021, and BD6,500 in 2022, which is the last year of the ongoing legislative term.
Commenting on this information, MP Al Sawwad described the speaker’s reply as “a confession of a major financial violation”, stating: “The speaker provided evidence of financial and administrative violations.” The MP added: “There is no legal basis for this act. Article 3 of the decree-law on determining the allowances of the chairpersons, both deputy speakers and members of both the Shura Council and the Council of Representatives, mentions that each of the deputy speakers and members of both councils shall receive a car allowance of BD750 per month.”
The First Deputy Speaker MP Abdulnabi Salman and the Second Deputy Speaker MP Ali Zayed didn’t comment on the matter.