Report tender fraud to police, ethics body – IEBC

July 25, 2012 2:52 pm
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Commissioner Muthoni Wangai says that the tender has attracted so much interest from both politicians and businessmen and was likely to get negative publicity from those who lose out/FILE

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 25 – A commissioner at the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) is asking those with information on impropriety on the Biometric Vote Registration (BVR) tender to report it to the Police or the Ethics and Anti corruption Commission (EACC).

Commissioner Muthoni Wangai says that the tender has attracted so much interest from both politicians and businessmen and was likely to get negative publicity from those who lose out.

She insists that the tender has not been awarded and that the short-listed companies should wait for the final result.

“Those who are expecting to lose are starting to complain too early; anyone who for instance complains that there have been attempts to obtain a bribe is out of the scope of the IEBC. Bribes are against the law and should be reported to the police or the Ethics and Anti Corruption Commission. Someone could be pre-empting the results,” she told Capital FM News in an interview.

Commissioner Wangai spoke after 4G Identity Solutions who were the lowest bidders in the BVR tender claimed that their offer was rejected after they failed to part with Sh30 million demanded by officials of the Foreign Affairs Ministry.

A letter seen by Capital FM News from 4G Identity Solutions addressed to the commission’s CEO James Oswago claims that the firm’s bid was rejected after it refused to meet demands by an official claiming to work in the Kenyan Consulate in India.

The official who remains unnamed for legal reasons is said to have further approached 4G’s local partners demanding Sh30 million on behalf of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs – to enable it to get the tender.

Another official who is said to be working at the consulate faxed a letter advising the company to get in touch with a Member of Parliament to facilitate the transaction.

“We believe that the (demand) letter written by the Kenyan Ministry of Foreign Affairs formed the basis of the tender committee to deny us the award despite the fact that we were the lowest evaluated company. It was a punishment because we refused to compromise to enter into corrupt dealings,” the letter by CEO Sreeni Tipuraneni says.

The letter by 4G Identity Solutions however raises questions on why they failed to report the matter that arose in May.

The company has denied allegations that it was blacklisted by any agency in India.

Commissioner Wangai also urged those with information on corruption to also give it to the Commission (IEBC) so that such information informs part of the due diligence report.

“It is the only way we can verify all the information a tendering company has given with well established methodology, but we need the information on impropriety so that all crimes are dealt with. Even after a tender has been awarded crimes still remain crimes,” Wangai insisted.

4G Identity Solution was ranked first out of the four firms shortlisted for award of the tender quoting Sh3.72 billion, followed by Systems Integrated Limited at Sh3.85 billion; Face Technologies was third quoting Sh4.78 billion while On Track Innovations was ranked fourth quoting a price of Sh8.22 billion.

On Monday the IEBC chairman Isaack Hassan maintained that the tendering process was above board having involved external observers and evaluators.

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