Housing tenders in earthquake zone mostly awarded to companies close to AKP

Tenders for the housing construction projects in the quake zone are being held secretly from the public despite experts' warning against a hasty rebuild. Almost all of the tenders, worth around 30 billion Turkish Liras, have been awarded to pro-government companies, according to reporting by the daily Birgün.

Duvar English

Almost all of the tenders for the reconstruction of the earthquake zone, worth around 30 billion Turkish Liras, have been awarded to companies affiliated with the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP). Tender agreements were signed with the companies owned by former AKP MPs, parliamentary candidates, spouses, friends, and relatives, according to reporting by the daily Birgün.

The government kicked off the construction works in the earthquake zone despite the warnings of experts who say that ground surveys should be carried out using scientific criteria and that it is necessary to wait for the aftershocks to end. 

On Feb. 21, Turkey’s state-run construction giant Public Housing Development Administration (TOKİ) started to hold tenders for permanent earthquake housing and temporary living unit compounds in 11 provinces devastated by the earthquakes. To date, more than 30 housing and living units as well as infrastructure and landscaping tenders have been completed.

In Adana province, one of the tenders was awarded to a company that came to the agenda by covering the cracks caused by earthquakes in its buildings. In Adıyaman and Malatya provinces, some tender agreements were signed between the TOKİ and former AKP MPs’ construction firms. And a housing project in Hatay was awarded to the construction firm of AKP Şırnak Mayor.

The tenders in the quake-hit region are based on a “negotiated tender procedure.” Hence, there is no obligation for the government to place an advertisement for the tender in advance as is the case for normal tendering or procurement procedures.

According to official reports, 90,609 out of 717,614 buildings in 11 provinces were identified as heavily damaged or collapsed buildings. The number of apartment flats in these buildings was determined as 269,51.