Nuusita Ashipala Ongwediva-The review panel in the Ministry of Finance has set aside the tender to award security services to the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry amidst allegations of favouritism. Aggrieved security company owners requested the panel to intervene on grounds the agriculture ministry had shortlisted companies that did not meet stipulated requirements to be awarded the tender. The tender, which has been on the cards since last September, is to provide security services to the ministry between November 01, 2017 and October 31, 2019. Several well-established security entities raised concern about some of the new companies that did not meet certain tender requirements. A letter signed by the review panel chairperson Kenandei Tjivikua late in December calls for the process to be halted. “Having considered all factual records developed and submitted by the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry and aggrieved bidders, the review panel in accordance with the power vested in it in terms of Section 60 (c) of the Public Procurement Act, decided to set aside in part the awarding of the procurement contract or any action of the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry bringing the framework agreement to force,” read the letter signed by the review panel chairperson. “The matter is referred back to the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry with instruction to clarify and provide answers to questions posed by the review panel,” the letter further read. According to the disgruntled security company owners, among the seven shortlisted firms are companies that were allegedly registered between June 2013 and March 2017, contravening the five-year requirement in the security trade. New Era has confirmed the registration dates with the Ministry of Industrialisation, Trade and SME Development. In exception of the companies that were shortlisted on merit, the aggrieved businesspeople accused the Ministry of Agriculture and its Permanent Secretary Percy Misika of purposefully ousting companies meeting requirements despite the fact that they are already providing security services to the ministry. In addition, Misika was further accused of having a hand in picking desired companies to serve the ministry. But Misika laughed off the allegations that he had a hand in shortlisting the companies in an interview at the end of last year. He maintained the ministry followed all due processes and advised those with complaints to put them in writing and channel them through to the relevant office.
2018-01-18 09:22:00 8 months ago