Polish secret service CBA to vet the national insurance company ZUS
In the aftermath of an audit that the Polish Supreme Audit Office (NIK) carried out in February 2014 in the Social Insurance Institution (ZUS) the NIK sent an official letter to the Polish Central Anti-Corruption Bureau (CBA) alerting it to the alleged irregularities, which occurred in a public tender that ZUS had issued for its main IT system, the Polish media reported at the end of February 2014.
“The CBA has the legal and operational means to help clear these doubts out,” Pawel Biedziak, spokesman for the NIK, told the Polish news portal TVN24 Feb. 28.
The NIK controllers who carried out the audit in ZUS have doubts as to whether there were bribes included in a PLN 600 million public tender issued by ZUS in 2013 for the maintenance of the institution’s chief internal IT system used for data management (Pol.: Kompleksowy System Informatyczny ZUS).
The Polish media point to a number of strange circumstances that occurred before and during the tender. First, the tender’s specifications comprised of instruction as to the education background of 87 employees that were to work on the project. There were also some significantly stringent financial requirements that not many IT companies could satisfy. Second, Asseco was the only company, which participated in the tender and was awarded the contract, which is strange considering the size of the deal.
Last but not least, Polish journalists uncovered that two Asseco employees, two public servants of ZUS (all four involved in the IT tender), as well as one individual employed at the Public Procurement Office (whose main purpose is to safeguard the legality of public tenders in Poland) were all members of the supervisory board of a foundation called Fundacja Fundowiczow. The media speculates that this might be more than just mere coincidence.
While the NIK continues its audit of the ZUS, the supervisory board of ZUS has also requested that the management board give it access to all documentation relevant to the IT service tender and has thus launched an investigation of its own.