NAIROBI, Kenya, May 25 – The Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) is being accused of awarding a tender to new insurance companies without following the laid down procurement procedures.
A tender to insure the wildlife service in this financial year expires on Friday next week but the new tender estimated to be worth Sh100 million has already been awarded to three firms.
Losers in the tenders are accusing the KWS management of failing to observe a procurement rule that requires that a grace period of between 14 and 21 days be provided prior to the award to allow appeals.
KWS Director Julius Kipng’etich has however, defended the decision, saying procurement laws were followed to the letter.
“We follow the procurement law and KWS is not exempt,” Kipng’etich said in reply to our query sent to him via text message.
He says anyone aggrieved can appeal to the Public Procurement Oversight Authority (PPOA) because KWS has nothing to hide.
“Anybody aggrieved with our decisions can appeal to PPOA as provided in the law,” he said.
KWS Spokesman Paul Mbugua however, said “no contract had been awarded.”
“Notification of award has been issued to all bidders. We are still within the 14-day window period for any appeal to be launched by any aggrieved party as per the Procurement Act and regulations,” he said. So far, he said, no appeal had been lodged.
However, insurance firms that placed bids for the tender and lost are worried because appeal avenues are closed due to lack of the 14-to days grace period supposed to be provided for before the new contracts commence.
They argue that since the insurance firms that won the tender have already received letters long before the expiry of the old contract, they may not be able to appeal.
Sources told Capital FM News that letters to the three insurance firms that won the tenders were issued earlier this week, yet the old cover expires on June 1.
“There is no window period provided for the appeal, those aggrieved may not get justice because they will not be able to appeal,” one source said.