BiH: Civil Protection of Sarajevo Canton bought masks from cake maker, owner is son of patron

The contract was signed on March 20, and the value of the purchase of three-layer disposable protective masks is 52.650 KM with VAT

The Cantonal Administration for Civil Protection of Sarajevo Canton has acquired 50,000 masks from Panta Rei, whose current owner is Baris Bejtovic, son of Bilsena Shahman, a member of the Alliance for a Better Future (SBB) party in the Cantonal Assembly, the Balkan Research Network of Bosnia and Herzegovina ( BIRN BiH), Klix.ba reports.

The contract was signed on March 20, and the value of the purchase of three-layer disposable protective masks is 52.650 KM with VAT.

Screenshot ugovora
Screenshot ugovora(Foto: BIRN)

According to the founding documents, the company “Panta Rei” was founded by Shahman and her son, and according to the official register of companies, the company Shahman performs the job of procurator. According to the Public Procurement Portal and the Companies Register, the business of the company is “care and body maintenance”.

Baris Bejtovic told BIRN BiH that the company had been selling cakes and cakes to shopping malls before the pandemic began.

“When I, as the owner, realized that it would stop, as it did, and since I have workers in the company who are single mothers and children of martyrs and mostly young and highly educated people, I was looking for a way to do something to help you. people were detained so I wouldn’t have to send them to the Bureau, ”says Bejtović.

He explains that before declaring a state of emergency he signed contracts with textile companies and gave them an idea to start producing masks, Klix.ba reports.

“Among the first ones I worked for were private grocery chains, a pharmacy, we used to sell protective masks, cotton or disposable,” says Bejtovic.

Beauty salons and irregularities noted

The head of the Sarajevo Canton’s Office for Corruption and Quality Management, Erduan Kafedzic, says the Office noted irregularities in this procurement and that “there are elements to go deeper into the checks.” According to him, this office has been collecting information on the purchases made since the accident began.

“When it came to Civil Protection, we noticed irregularities in this public procurement – that the company Panta Rei Bijeljina was mentioned in the submitted material and on the website of the Anti-Corruption Office, where all public procurements are recorded. it says ‘Panta Rei Sarajevo’, ”says Kafedzic.

Office to seek information from Civil Protection why one company appears in the competition and the other in the contract.

The Public Procurement Agency has previously explained that in a “situation of extreme urgency, when it is not possible to apply regular procurement procedures, but there is still sufficient time, the negotiated procedure can be used without the publication of a procurement notice”.

The procurement notice published on the pages of the Government of the Canton of Sarajevo stated that the Civil Protection of KS exempted this procurement from regular procurement procedures, explaining that the application of the public procurement procedure would have negative consequences.

The contract with the company “Panta Rei” was signed on the same day that the Decision on initiating the procedure for exemption from the application of the Public Procurement Law was made.

“We will ask the Civil Protection to provide this information to us in writing and afterwards we will forward it to the competent authority and continue to act on the Agency, but only when we get why in the public procurement on our web site the submitted material mentions a company from Bijeljina, and as mentioned in the contract here. Whether Civil Protection provided the Office with false information by accident or on purpose, the information they provided did not fit into the contract on the website, and that is the key point, and that is a start, ”says Kafedzic.

The Civil Protection of Sarajevo Canton stated for BIRN BiH that the procedure for the procurement of protective masks was initiated on the basis of market research, that is, the offers they received during that period. Panta Rei’s offer included a 50 percent down payment.

“After signing the contract, we are obliged to enter all information related to procurement into the e-procurement information system, and when entering the e-procurement information system, an error occurred and two companies with the same name were selected wrong, so this is a technical error during the of the entries, ”they said from the Civil Protection of Sarajevo Canton.

The Public Procurement Portal lists the site “Panta Rei” as antiage.ba, which is the website of the Center for Dermacosmetics, Aesthetics and Healthy Nutrition, of which Bilsena Shahman is part of the team, according to the website.

Short biography of Bilsena Shahman (Photo: Screenshot)

According to the Anti-Corruption and Quality Management Office of the Sarajevo Canton, the Anti-Age Center in Sarajevo is the Panta Rei branch with Baris Bejtovic as its head.

Bejtovic says that the director of Panta Rei received a request for the offer of protective equipment they were offering at the time.

“I don’t know how they (KS Civil Protection) knew this, that we are a wholesaler for four years and whether someone from that Cantonal Civil Protection Administration called someone from the pharmacies we sold them to or someone the other, so they directed them to us, I really don’t know that. I haven’t seen any of them. I don’t know, right to tell you, who was the Director of Civil Protection at the time and who ran it all, ”says Bejtović.

As the then v.d. Director of Civil Protection Kemal Cacan signed a contract with Panta Rei and says that the contract was signed at the outset of the increase in the number of coronavirus patients.

“We had four or five addresses we could contact, but absolutely no one had the funds we were looking for, and then Mr Baris Bejtovic answered. He said he had, and I think it was about that, about the payment method, because it was at the beginning and prices were rising enormously. From the beginning of February to the beginning of March, prices went up ten times and then it was – let’s catch anything, it could be shared with people, “Cacan says, claiming Bejtovic had the best deal.

“That gentleman answered, he sent a mail, he sent an offer, and I think his price was even more favorable than that of other bidders, I know he was the cheaper of the two,” Cacan says.

Cacan claims that he neither knows Bilessen Shahman nor her son personally.

“We heard the phone once and then it went through my purchasing offices and they did,” Cacan says.

Shahman claims that it did not affect the assignment

Bejtovic explains that the condition for getting a job was the best offer and the fastest delivery time.

“We guaranteed fast delivery, which is very rare for anyone in that period,” he said, claiming his mother, Bilsena Shahman, was unaware of the business.

“I’m not a little kid so I have to tell someone what I’m doing now. I do my job and she was glad to leave people out of work. That may be the smallest contract we’ve ever made. We have done most of the turnover with private companies, with the largest pharmacy chains in Republika Srpska. I don’t know how my mom could have influenced her, “says Bejtovic.

Bilsena Shahman says she in no way influenced her son to get the mask-buying business, Klix.ba reports.

“I do not even know that it was a public procurement, I do not indulge in these matters at all. I know he works non-stop. Not only was it Civil Protection, he also procured for others. He did not import, but sourced it from our producing manufacturers. I know he went to Tesanj all the time for masks. Someone has a production of protective masks in Tešanj – they are not medical but protective, they were cotton and these disposables, “says Shahman, Klix.ba reports.

Her son’s firm, she adds, has wholesale and retail sales and a beauty salon, which is also a herbal pharmacy.

“And there are ‘a million’ things in that codebook,” Shahman says.

Shahman was elected to the Sarajevo Canton Assembly in the October 2018 elections.

Another affair in a row

This is another affair in a row, the affair recently echoed in the case of imports of respirators from China through the Srebrenica raspberry agricultural firm Srebrenica.

The contract for the purchase of these respirators, worth 10.5 million KM, was signed by the Director of the Federal Civil Protection Administration Fahrudin Solak and the owner of FH Srebrena Raspberry Fikret Hodzic.

After BiH media reported information on a suspected procurement of Chinese respirators, the Sarajevo Cantonal Prosecutor’s Office took over the investigation of the case.

The House of Peoples of the Parliament of the Federation of BiH has also formed a committee of eight members to investigate the procurement in detail.



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