RUNDU - Various security companies are frustrated on how the Kavango East Regional Council is about to award a N$30 million tender to a company that reportedly does not meet any pre-tender requirements and gave the highest quote compared to other bidders.
The tender was for a successful security company to guard facilities such as public libraries, schools, hostels and other properties of the directorate of education in the Kavango East Region for three years. Competing security companies say the awarding of this tender was pushed through by officials who they are accusing of having vested interests in the deal.
The security companies who are standing together submitted an appeal within the required seven days, giving in their grievances as they have allegedly confirmed some irregularities in the awarding of this tender, as the Public Procurement Act allows an appeal within seven working days before the tender can be officially awarded.
“The country is talking about fair distribution of wealth and this officials are busy playing their cards, we will involve the Anti-Corruption Commission as this is a serious case. This has been going on for long in this region and it’s oppressing other businesses who are supposed to deserve a fair tender process,” said one aggrieved security firm owner who asked not to be named for fear of victimisation.
The companies argue that their competitor which officials are about to award the tender to does not have a single guard, nor does it have other requirements that the tender asked for.
The requirements were that the company must at least have two years experience in the sector, must have its own vehicles, office and firearms.
“And this company we are talking about doesn’t meet any of that, we have also discovered that they also faked testimonials using names of companies that they allegedly provided service to, and we confirmed that some of these testimonials are fake during the appeal meeting we held on Thursday,” another company owner said.
The concerned companies also asked why the officials chose not to award this tender to at least six companies like it is being done in other regions.
Kavango East Chief Regional Officer (CRO) Ludwig Thikusho said during the appeal meeting with these aggrieved security companies on Thursday last week, it was concluded that there should be an investigation into their allegations.
No award of the contract was made so far because of the issues raised, Thikusho told New Era.
“As an accounting officer of the regional council, I will do my own independent investigation. The bid evaluation committee started the process and handed it to the procurement committee and the process goes on.”
“I will along with two other senior officials from different government entities investigate or go through the process to see if the irregularities that were brought forward are true or false.”