A US contractor in Iraq overbilled the Pentagon by at least $4.4 million (Dh16 million) for spare parts and equipment, including $900 for an electronic control switch valued at $7.05, according to a new audit.
Based on the questionable costs identified in a $300 million contract with Dubai-based Anham, the US should review all its contracts with the company in Iraq and Afghanistan, which total about $3.9 billion, said Special Inspector General For Iraq Reconstruction Stuart Bowen. "The audit found weak oversight in multiple areas that left the government vulnerable to improper overcharges," Bowen wrote in the forward to his 30th quarterly report, released yesterday. The contract in question was funded with a combination of money earmarked for Iraqi Security Forces and Army operations and maintenance funds. Among the "egregious examples of overbilling" by Anham were $4,500 for a circuit breaker valued at $183.30, $3,000 for a $94.47 circuit breaker and $80 for a small segment of drain pipe valued at $1.41.
Bowen's office called for an in-depth review of the entire contract after discovering "significant weaknesses" in government oversight, questionable competition practices and possible undisclosed ownership affiliations between Anham and some of its subcontractors.
Anham officials didn't immediately respond to a phone call to its headquarters office or an e-mail seeking comment.
The special inspector general, created to serve as a watchdog over US reconstruction aid in Iraq, questioned almost 39 per cent, or $4.4 million, of the $11.4 million in contract costs it reviewed.
From/ Gulf News