By Aaron Humes: The Ministry of Health intends to purchase, for some 357 thousand dollars, six Mazda BT 50 Intermediate pick-up trucks with campers from Belize Auto Zone in Belize City – but not if a leading auto dealer has its say.
By letter dated March 12, Chad Dietrich, Managing Director of Caribbean Motors on the Philip Goldson Highway, raised objection with Contractor General Omar Mitchell as to the process by which Belize Auto Zone was selected for the contract.
Having obtained permission from the Ministry of Finance, Dietrich alleges, Belize Auto Zone, which he disparages as selling “small auto part (sic), tints and BBQ,” was selected without a tendering process, “in contravention of good governance practices and fair play,” not to mention that the establishment is not an authorized vehicle dealer.
In contrast, says Dietrich, Caribbean Motors is and has been the authorized Mazda dealer in Belize for some time, and therefore can offer the vehicles for a cheaper price, with standard warranty, and continuous service through its nationwide service stations. More importantly, it already has the vehicles in stock.
Dietrich asks Contractor General Mitchell for a chance to bid “fair and square” on the contract, as the situation does not appear to be an emergency in which the tender process can be bypassed, nor is he convinced that Caribbean Motors’s stance can be beaten.
The move, we understand, has riled up auto dealers countrywide, with reports even suggesting that the proprietor of Auto Zone is somehow related to the Minister.