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Wednesday 21 November 2018
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State to pay software firm millions

A LOCAL software company has won its claim against the State for $16 million which it said was owed for hosting and managing the TT Smart Card system on its platforms. Novo Technology Inc Ltd (NTIL) said it provided services to the Ministry of Social Development and Family Services after October 15, 2015, at the ministry’s request, but was not paid.

In an oral decision delivered at the Hall of Justice in Port of Spain, Justice Eleanor Donaldson-Honeywell granted judgment in favour of Novo Technology and ordered the State to repay the $21.4 million owed for services provided from October 2015 to June 2016, amounting to $21.4 million, and the $5.4 million still owing on the first contract, along with six per cent interest on the sums.

She did not permit Novo’s claim for an alleged $11.9 million loan facility. NTIL was represented by attorneys Keith Scotland and Jacqueline Chang.

According to NTIL, it entered into a contract with the Ministry of the People on September 26, 2013, to supply, implement and maintain an integrated multi-application biometric smart-card system at a contract price of US$5.3 million and $29.3 million, plus VAT. The first contract came to an end in October 2015, and it continued to provide services to the ministry, but with no new written agreement was executed. Novo contended that after October 15, 2015, the ministry requested and consented to its hosting and maintaining the smart-card system. The company said it continued to communicate with the ministry between October 2015 and April 2016 on hosting and maintaining the smart-card system and its services were never terminated. But on April 12, 2016, the company said, it received a letter from the ministry’s Permanent Secretary terminating its services, and was told on April 29 that the ministry was working towards getting approvals for payment for services it provided after October 15, 2015.

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