Overseas Civilian Contractors

News and issues relating to Civilian Contractors working Overseas

Dubai firm Anham scores US$8.1bn US army food deal

Arabian Business  June 26, 2012

Dubai-based military contractor Anham has won a contract worth an estimated US $8.1bn to provide food to US troops serving in Afghanistan.

Anham will succeed present contractor Supreme Foodservice after it became embroiled in a billing dispute with the Pentagon.

“We have a long track record of conducting large-scale, successful operations in the most demanding conditions,” said Anham in a statement. “Whether it is our support of the US troops and state department in Iraq, Kuwait and Jordan or the US army in Afghanistan, we deliver the best services on time and within budget.”

The present contract with Supreme Foodservice was inked in 2005, costing the US government nearly US$6.8bn.

This year, however, payments to Supreme Foodservice have been reduced, following claims by the Pentagon that they have overpaid the supplier by US$750m.

Please see the original and read more here

June 26, 2012 Posted by | Afghanistan, Civilian Contractors, Contract Awards, Contracts Awarded, Department of Defense, Pentagon | , , , , | Leave a comment

SA man’s hell in Afghan jail

Daily News  May 18, 2012

The threat of execution, al-Qaeda and Taliban members baying for his blood and a Guantanamo Bay-style lockdown. That’s what a Cape Town man endured in an Afghanistan jail for two-and-a-half years.

On arriving at Cape Town International Airport on Thursday, Philip Young spoke of the hardships he went through while held captive by authorities in Afghanistan.

Young was speaking moments after an emotional reunion with his children: David, 22, Dylan, 18, and Caitlin, 13. They hadn’t seen their father for almost three years. When she saw him Caitlin burst into tears.

 

“It feels great to be home. It was a long ordeal, but now it’s time to get on with my life,” said Young.

Before Young stepped off the plane David said: “It’s been very difficult to be without our dad for so long. I’ve missed the ordinary things – having a beer with him, going cycling, going camping. I can’t wait to do those things again.”

 

In 2010 Young was found guilty of murder in an Afghan court and sentenced to five years in prison. The sentence was increased to 16 years after the prosecutor tried to secure the death sentence through an appeal. Later it was reduced to seven years.

The investigation and trial were described by Thinus Coetzee, a human rights activist working for Amnesty International, as deeply flawed.

“The very section of the Afghan Criminal Code under which he was found guilty should have exonerated him on the grounds of self-defence. It was bizarre. None of the paperwork made any sense, so to this day we don’t really know what crime he was convicted of,” said Coetzee on Thursday.

In 2009 Young was working as a deputy project manager in Afghanistan for Anham, a US logistics supply company, which had been contracted by the US government’s Counter Narcotics Advisory team.

On October 1, 2009, while returning to the Anham compound in Helmund Province, an Afghan security guard approached Young’s vehicle, threatened him and started firing at the vehicle. Young returned fire, killing the guard, Abdul Ghafar.

Young said Ghafar had enlisted a group of armed men to forcibly take control of the compound after being dismissed as the site’s deputy security leader.

“None of the courts contested that my only motive for firing at Ghafar was the fact that he was firing at me. None of the courts contested the fact that the killing of Ghafar was not premeditated. And yet, inexplicably, I was found guilty of murder. A conviction for which I could potentially have received the death penalty. There is no justice in Afghanistan.”

Young said he felt helpless during the court proceedings.

 

Awaiting trial in a communal cell with 14 other prisoners, Young said he had to develop “eyes in the back of his head”. He was housed with Taliban and al-Qaeda operatives, and on at least one occasion had to fight for his life.

 

After his conviction he was moved to the Counter Narcotics Justice Centre, and then transferred to Pul-e-Charkhi, a maximum security facility east of Kabul where he had minimal contact with other prisoners.

“We had beds, enough food and the guards treated me with decency. Having said that, the restrictiveness of the set-up was terrible. On my birthday my colleagues bought me a cake, but I was not allowed to have a single piece.”

The remission of Young’s sentence and his early release was made possible by a decree issued by Afghan President Hamid Karzai.

“I qualified in general terms, like many other prisoners in Afghanistan. Karzai is impervious to international pressure on such issues, so I don’t believe that the campaign for my freedom swayed him,” said Young.

 

Coetzee said he had “the highest praise” for the SA government’s roles in engaging with Afghan authorities.

Spokesman

Clayson Monyela said the Department of International Relations and Co-operation was delighted at the news of Young’s release.

Please see thr original and read more here

May 18, 2012 Posted by | Afghanistan, Civilian Contractors, Contractors Arrested, Private Security Contractor | , , , , | Leave a comment

Dubai Firm Overbilled Pentagon $900 for $7 Part, Bowen Says

Bloomberg at SF Gate      July 31, 2011

A U.S. contractor in Iraq overbilled the Pentagon by at least $4.4 million for spare parts and equipment, including $900 for an electronic control switch valued at $7.05, according to a new audit.

Based on the questionable costs identified in a $300 million contract with Dubai-based Anham LLC, the U.S. should review all its contracts with the company in Iraq and Afghanistan, which total about $3.9 billion, said Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction Stuart Bowen.

“The audit found weak oversight in multiple areas that left the government vulnerable to improper overcharges,” Bowen wrote in the forward to his 30th quarterly report, released today. The contract in question was funded with a combination of money earmarked for Iraqi Security Forces and Army operations and maintenance funds.

Among the “egregious examples of overbilling” by Anham were $4,500 for a circuit breaker valued at $183.30, $3,000 for a $94.47 circuit breaker and $80 for a small segment of drain pipe valued at $1.41

Please read the entire article at SF Gate

July 31, 2011 Posted by | Contractor Corruption, Contractor Oversight, Iraq, SIGIR | , , , , | Leave a comment

Pentagon forced to extend Iraq contracts that are under appeal

By Walter Pincus at The Washington Post

The Defense Department is being forced to extend multimillion-dollar contracts for services in Iraq, including one with a firm under criminal indictment, because losing bidders have legally challenged the companies selected as replacements.

Agility, a Kuwaiti firm charged in November 2009 with overbilling food contracts worth $8.5 billion over four years for troops, civilians and contractors in Iraq, Jordan and Kuwait, recently received a $26 million, six-month contract extension. The extension was granted because another Kuwaiti concern challenged the April award of the food contract to Agility’s replacement, Anham, a Dubai-based conglomerate.

A second firm, Fulcra Worldwide of Arlington was awarded an extension worth $5 million on its strategic communications contract in Iraq with U.S. Central Command after Fulcra itself filed a claim against loss of the contract to another bidder, SOS International, a New York firm with offices in Reston.

The Defense Logistics Agency, which supervises the food contract, decided to extend the Agility contract through April 2011 while the protest against Anham by another bidder is being adjudicated by the Government Accountability Office (GAO).

Agility had been scheduled to transition the work, which amounts to more than $300 million a year, to Anham. However, cargo shipper Kuwait & Gulf Link Transport filed a protest against the award on the grounds that Anham’s proposal failed to meet criteria set out in the contract offering.

While a decision by the GAO is expected shortly, Anham has been delayed in preparing to take over the contract, which involves not only purchasing and supplying food and other items, but also warehousing it in Kuwait before shipping to Iraq and Jordan to meet the needs of about 145,000 people.

Meanwhile, Agility, which has been barred from bidding directly or through affiliates on new U.S. contracts, will continue to provide provisions under the contract extension. The company also has been fighting the Justice Department indictment in federal court in Georgia claiming it cannot be subpoenaed or tried anywhere outside Kuwait. After the indictment, Agility closed its U.S. offices, even though top officials of the subsidiary handling the contract are not only U.S. citizens but also former Army generals, one of whom served in a senior position with the Defense Logistics Agency.

Central Command announced last week it had to extend the Fulcra contract for six months because to “award to any other source would result in unacceptable delays and negatively impact the ability” of U.S. forces in Iraq to carry on “all aspects of media communications activities,” according to the paper justifying the decision.

Under the contract, which it has had for more than three years, Fulcra not only works directly with the Iraq government spokesman and ministers at the Defense and Interior ministries, but also carries out monitoring of media in Iraq, plans strategic messaging, and manages web materials for English and Arabic sites supporting the Iraq command. Fulcra is the new name for the Lincoln Group, which as a Pentagon contractor in 2005 was found to have paid Iraqi newspapers to print stories written by American soldiers or its employees.

Fulcra lost its bid on the new contract in June and in July filed the first of three complaints with the GAO. It lost the first two and before the last one was settled, the firm filed a protest in October with the United States Court of Federal Claims, where it is pending. Meanwhile, Central Command was faced with a dilemma since Fulcra’s complaint prevented SOS International from making preparations to begin work and keeping Fulcra in place was its only option.

Fulcra is claiming that SOS filed an “unreasonably low-priced proposal,” according to its complaint before the Court of Federal Claims. Arguing the new contract was “largely similar” to the one Fulcra now holds, the firm said its current monthly price was $531,459 while the SOS bid averaged out to $158,620 a month for what were to be “largely similar” services. In the complaint, Fulcra argues that SOS’s bid, which offered a 70 percent reduction in cost, was “unrealistic” and thus should have been”technically unacceptable” by Central Command.

Fulcra described the SOS bid as a “bait and switch” violation, where the offer misrepresents its costs with the hopes of winning the contract and then expects to be paid based on higher actual expenditures.

SOS’s response to the allegations was sealed and a lawyer representing the firm said she would not comment on the case. Please see the original here

See also at MsSparky

December 13, 2010 Posted by | Contractor Corruption, Department of Defense, Iraq, Kuwait, Pentagon | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Anham Says Logistics Contract With U.S. Department of Defense is Final

Bloomberg Middle East

Anham FCZO LLC said its logistics contract with the U.S. Department of Defense is final and that it has started to implement it with a view to fully taking over the order by the end of this year.

“It has been final for a while,” Managing Director Mogheith Sukhtian told reporters today in Kuwait City. “We have a signed contract with the U.S. government.”

Dubai-based Anham said April 16 it was awarded a $2.2 billion contract by the U.S. Defense Department to provide logistical support to U.S. troops in Iraq, Kuwait and Jordan.

Kuwait & Gulf Link Transport Co., a cargo shipper, said April 28 that it filed an objection to the awarding of the contract to Anham, which it said failed to meet criteria. The U.S. Defense Logistics Agency decided to take “corrective measures” regarding the objection and will receive amended offers from bidders “to take new decisions for a new settlement,” Kuwait & Gulf Link said in July.

“The protest process is a part of the U.S. government contracting process and it’s conducted in the normal course of U.S government contracts,” Sukhtian said. “So we’re undergoing the process but in the meantime, what we can say, is that the contract is being executed. We anticipate the transition between the incumbent and us to be completed by the end of the year,” Sukhtian added.

The incumbent contractor, Agility Public Warehousing Co., is the Middle East’s largest storage and logistics company and faces charges of overbilling the U.S government on a multibillion dollar contract to supply food for troops in Kuwait and Iraq. Agility had said it was in talks to resolve legal cases with the U.S. Department of Justice and there was no guarantee a settlement would be agreed.

A U.S. magistrate recommended the dismissal of an indictment against Agility’s unit, Agility DGS Holdings Inc., in connection with the company’s contract to feed U.S. troops in Iraq and Kuwait, Agility said Oct. 11. Please see the original story here

 

October 28, 2010 Posted by | Civilian Contractors, Contract Awards, Iraq, Kuwait | , , , , , | Leave a comment

South African man gets longer sentence

Erika Gibson, Beeld  News 24

Pretoria – A South African man who appealed against his five-year prison sentence in Afghanistan was given even worse news when his imprisonment was extended to 16 years.

Security specialist Philip Young was devastated by the news, his brother Pat Young said.

“My brother is dismayed, angry and frustrated.”

His brother was arrested in September last year when he shot dead an Afghan security guard who had threatened to shoot him and some of his other colleagues with an AK47.

Self defence

This was after the guard had already fired a shot into the ground from which shrapnel had hit Phil’s hand.

But the State felt Phil’s response in self-defence exceeded the actions of the security guard.

After the incident, Phil was arrested along with an Afghan colleague.

He was working as a security specialist for the American company Anham as part of the American government’s counternarcotics initiative in Afghanistan.

“We knew the appeal could go wrong. The prosecutor after all, in the beginning of the case, asked for the death penalty.

“He was extremely dissatisfied when Phil was only given five years on a lesser charge.

“He as well as my brother had to sign documents after sentencing in which they protested against the sentence.

“Now it would appear as if the State’s protest carried the most weight.

Hopes for presidential pardon

“This is not the end – we can also appeal in the high court – but I don’t know how long this process will take.”

Phil’s appeal was postponed six times without reason before it was suddenly heard on Wednesday.

Pat had earlier travelled to Afghanistan to gather facts for the case, precisely because the country’s legal system was chaotic and unpredictable.

He then established that certain key evidence was never handed in or witnesses weren’t found.

Pat hopes that a presidential pardon could help if they run out of legal options.

He has already sent a petition to Afghan President Hamid Kharzai on behalf of himself and his brothers’ three children, but has not heard anything back yet.

Please see this Call To Action at  Feral Jundi

Free South African Security Contractor Philip Young from Afghanistan Prison!

One operator said Phil Young had shot the Afghan guard in order to stop the bloodbath. According to the operator, the dead man’s brother was well-known in Taliban ranks. His family lived in a Taliban stronghold on the Pakistani border.

Trouble maker. The guard had apparently been a troublemaker for some time and was about to be fired. The six guards had apparently been conspiring for some time to kidnap or kill the foreigners on a certain day early in October. Young and the guards worked for the American company Anham, which is linked to the American government’s Counternarcotics Advisory Teams (CNAT), in Lakshar Gah. The Macedonian guard commander apparently knew of the plot but did nothing to stop it.

“Phil and some of his colleagues returned that day from a mission and when he saw the six in civilian clothes but armed with AK47s, he immediately suspected trouble,” said the operator. ”He confronted the men, upon which one aimed a weapon at Phil and fired a shot.” The shot missed Young and in self-defence, he fired three shots at the guard as he apparently realised that the lives of many of his colleagues would be in danger if all six of the men started firing at them. According to the operator, the central government in Afghanistan had rules and regulations for security guards, which stated that a person could fire back if he was being shot at.

*****

This makes me sick.  All of these contractors that I have posted lately who are currently imprisoned in Afghanistan, are at the mercy of a corrupt government and pathetic justice system.  Just look at the facts with Philip Young’s case?  He should be given a medal and not a prison sentence. From the sounds of it, his actions probably saved the lives of his fellow contractors on that day, and yet he is currently being jerked around by a pathetic justice system in Afghanistan.

So what can we do?  First, pass this around to everyone.  Second, write to the British Embassy in Kabul and let them know how you feel.  South Africa does not have diplomatic representation in Afghanistan, and the British government has agreed to help.  I say write the US Embassy as well, because what is going on with this man is just plain wrong. Thanks to Cassie for giving me the heads up on this. –Matt

Facebook for British Embassy in Kabul here.

Facebook for Philip Young here

Address: British Embassy, 15th Street Roundabout, Wazir Akbar Khan,PO Box: 334 Kabul, Afghanistan

Opening Hours: Sunday – Thursday  08:30  to 16:30

Telephone:  (93)  (0) 700 102 000 (Switchboard)

Fax:  (93)  (0) 700 102 250  (Management)

E-mail: BritishEmbassy.Kabul@fco.gov.uk

June 21, 2010 Posted by | Afghanistan, Civilian Contractors, Private Military Contractors, Private Security Contractor, Safety and Security Issues | , , , , , | 4 Comments

New contractor picked to supply coalition troops in Mideast

By Walter Pincus

at the Washington Post

A new contractor has been selected to supply billions of dollars worth of food and beverages to U.S. and other coalition troops in Iraq, Kuwait and Jordan in coming years, replacing a Kuwait-based firm that was indicted in November on charges of overbilling the government for those services.

Agility, a multibillion-dollar, worldwide government contractor, has been fighting the charges in federal district court in Atlanta. Agility and all its subsidiaries are barred from bidding on U.S. government contracts while the legal case is unresolved.

Anham, a six-year-old Dubai-based firm, was chosen over three other bidders for the new contract, which could be worth between $2 billion and $6 billion in the next six years, said Dennis J. Gauci, a spokesman for the Defense Logistics Agency. Anham is a collaboration of three multi-national firms.

Anham’s chairman and chief operating officer is Abul Huda Farouki, a Northern Virginia resident and well-known social figure in Washington. His HII-Finance Corp., based in Fairfax County, joined with two giant Middle East conglomerates to form Anham. One is Saudi-based Arab Supply and Trading, and the other is the Munir Sukhtian Group of Companies, a Jordanian investment and operating entity. Since 2004, Anham has “continually grown and expanded its business operations to over 20 countries,” according to its Web site.

Another Farouki enterprise, Nour USA, is listed on the Anham Web site as an affiliate. Nour USA is a service company “that provides Anham with a strong interface connection with the U.S. Government, and American non-governmental and business organizations,” according to the site. “Nour has proven itself to have the experience and knowledge required to help clients acquire, manage, and execute contracts and projects; especially entities with an international focus.”

There will be a roughly six-month transition from Agility to Anham “to allow the new prime vendor sufficient time to take over the contract and the current contractor to diminish current stocks in the supply chain,” Gauci said Thursday.

April 16, 2010 Posted by | Contract Awards, Contractor Corruption, Contractor Oversight, Wartime Contracting | , , , , , , | Leave a comment