First Look

Italian Firm Contracted by European Union Fails to successfully deliver and install audio and video link technology in Jamaica’s Courts

Ministry of Justice | 2019-01-31 16:53:00

 The Ministry of Justice takes note of stories carried in the media over the past several days about delays in implementing audio and video link technology in the courts. The Ministry unequivocally rejects the claim that it has delayed the implementation of audio and video link technology in the courts. Instead it has explored all appropriate channels to have Italian firm Memetech fulfil its contractual obligations for the successful installation of the technology in 78 courtrooms in Jamaica. It should be noted that all court rooms in Kingston- a total of 41- have been outfitted with all hardware. The remaining 37 courtrooms in rural areas are about 85% complete.

The Ministry wishes to place in the public domain, the facts regarding this matter.

1. The project to install audio and video link technology in 78 courtrooms is funded with European Aid in the amount of approximately 1.7M Euros. The Planning Institute of Jamaica is the Contracting Authority and the Ministry of Justice is the beneficiary or third party. The technology is being installed by an Italian firm, Memetech SRL that was awarded the contract by the PIOJ after a competitive procurement process carried out in accordance with the stipulations of the EU;

2. The contract was signed with Memetech July 2016 with a 180 day deadline to January 2017. Every deadline in the contract has been missed by Memetech from the outset including the submission of a work plan and the delivery and installation of hardware and software. In addition, there have been several other breaches of contract including the contractor’s failure to provide Proof of Validity and authenticity of software and copyrights;

3. The final shipment of the equipment without the amplifiers arrived in Jamaica September, 2017 - eight months after the January deadline for the completion of the project (delivery, successful testing and installation). The amplifiers were delivered February 2018;

4. Various pieces of equipment supplied by the contractor had information pertaining to the Country of Origin either missing, intentionally obscured or were from countries outside of the European Union as stipulated in breach of the contract agreement. The Ministry of Justice has requested of the Contracting Agency, PIOJ, an investigation in determining the Country of Origin in respect of twenty-two (22) items and is awaiting a response. The Ministry of Justice has been frustrated in its attempts to abort the contract due to EU rules;

5. Memetech delivered non-original software, the repeated testing of which met with unsuccessful results in March 2018;

Given the significant delays and breaches of contract, the Ministry, after the appropriate legal advice and in keeping with GoJ procurement guidelines is well advanced in the procurement of the Liberty Software owned by High Criteria Inc. that is considered to be one of the most reliable worldwide. This Software is being used in three courts in Jamaica with very positive reviews and will be implemented in courtrooms that are not included in the 78 that were selected in the Memetech contract. Memetech has agreed to utilise the Liberty Software by way of an addendum to the contract extended November 2018. Today, the Ministry of Justice has been informed that Memetech has failed to enter into any agreement with High Criteria Inc. which has indicated a six week lead time to begin implementation;

The Ministry has been at the forefront of leading the implementation of an aggressive Justice Sector modernisation and reform programme. No other stakeholder faces the reputational risk that comes with failure to deliver. However, the people of Jamaica rely on the Ministry of Justice to ensure that the country does not face reputational harm in accepting and installing in our courts unreliable items that cannot withstand scrutiny in the international business community or the procurement of which does not meet the threshold of good governance, value for money and transparency.

Posted By :Justice Education Unit

Company Name : Ministry of Justice

Website :

Company Address : NCB Towers, South 2 Oxford Road, Kingston 5

More press release from Ministry of Justice