The US Government’s Accountability Office has said that it is not wrong to give the ‘Astronaut Lunar Lander’ contract by Jeff Bezos.
Jeff Bezos, the world’s richest man
The US Government’s Accountability Office on Friday denied that NASA had wrongly awarded the contract for the ‘Astronaut Lunar Lander’ to Elon Musk’s SpaceX. Actually, companies related to Amazon owner Jeff Bezos had protested against the contract being given to SpaceX. Jeff Bezos’s Blue Origin and Lidos’s subsidiary Dynetics filed complaints with the US government.
“NASA did not violate procurement law or regulation,” Kenneth Patton, managing associate general counsel for the Office of Accountability, wrote in a statement. NASA has not broken any rules by giving just one contract. The evaluation of all three proposals was fair and in accordance with the applicable procurement law, regulation and the terms of the declaration. The decision of the Accountability Office has supported the decision of the US Space Agency. NASA made a surprise announcement in April that it was awarding a $2.9 billion contract to SpaceX. Since then the controversy started.
Why was a contract issued?
SpaceX was in competition with Blue Origin and Dianetics for the ‘Astronaut Lunar Lander’ contract. It was believed that NASA would issue two contracts, but the US Congress allocated less money for the program. This was the reason that then NASA issued the same contract. A spokesperson for Blue Origin told CNBC that the company still believed there were fundamental issues with NASA’s decision. But the Accountability Office has not been able to address these issues due to their limited jurisdiction. At the same time, SpaceX and Dianetics have not said anything about this decision yet.
What did NASA say?
NASA said in a statement that the Accountability Office’s decision will allow the agency to establish a timeline for the first crewed landing on the Moon after more than 50 years. As soon as possible, NASA will provide an update on Artemis, the human landing system and the way forward for humanity’s return to the Moon, the US space agency said. We will continue to work with the Biden administration and Congress to ensure funding for a strong and sustainable approach to America’s return to the Moon with US commercial partners.
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