Several road contractors who were left hanging after the Public Procurement Review Panel cancelled their tenders to maintain tarred roads in several towns, will now get their jobs back following the Roads Authority’s win in the Windhoek High Court yesterday.
The tenders are worth an estimated N$276 million.
Judge Nate Ndauendapo
set aside the decision of the Public Procurement Review Panel of 3 June 2022 to cancel several tenders awarded by the Roads Authority (RA).
He also said that the bidding process and decision of RA to award the tenders to 39 companies is valid.
Ndauendapo directed RA to conclude the contracts of the successful bidders.
In 2022, RA approached the High Court when the review panel concluded that the individual values of the five tenders as advertised by RA in September 2021 were above the N$35 million
public entities threshold,
thus they needed to go through the Central Procurement Board.
The review panel’s decision resulted from a review application by companies that were unsuccessful with their bids for the lucrative tenders.
The companies are Lau Tom Constructions, Palladium Civil Engineering, Erongo Quarry and Civil Works, and Khan Trading.
The RA received over 800 bids for the five tenders of which 39 companies were successful. The tenders are for Windhoek, Oshakati, Keetmanshoop, Otjiwarongo, and Rundu areas.
According to the court documents, the total value of the Windhoek tender is N$70.1 million, Keetmanshoop is N$62.6 million, Otjiwarongo is N$72.8 million and Oshakati is worth N$60.1 million.
The tender for Rundu is the highest with a value of N$143.2 million. The companies will maintain the tarred road for a period of 36 months.
In papers filed in the High Court, RA’s CEO Conrad Lutombi said no company is awarded a contract exceeding N$35 million.
Lutombi said the individual tenders do not exceed the N$35 million threshold as they have been divided into several sub-tenders with an average value of about N$10 million each.
So, it was wrong of the review panel to have taken the collective value of the contracts within the bidding process to reach a conclusion that the procurement was above the threshold, he said.
In their suit, RA was represented by Francois Bangamwabo while Henry Shimutwikeni was for the review panel.