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Power board chair warns over tenders

BUSINESS NEWS
By Geoffrey Mosoku | February 3rd 2015

Well-connected cartels are pushing to get deals to supply the Rural Electrification Authority (REA) with transformers without following procurement rules, REA Board of Directors chairman Simon Gicharu has said.

He further said the cartels claim to know people in high places and have been demanding to be given Local Purchase Orders (LPOs) from REA to supply the equipment without tendering or seeking to be qualified.

Mr Gicharu Monday revealed that the clique wants to be given the deal to supply the transformers, most of which do not meet the standard set by Kenya Power.

He said the parastatal has resisted any attempt to be infiltrated by the cartel that if allowed will compromise the integrity of procurement and standards of the transformers.

"These people are very powerful and they want to force us to give them LPOs but I have instructed the CEO to be strict and ensure procurement procedures are observed," Gicharu said over the weekend at the Gabriel Kahindi Memorial Primary School in Kilifi County.

Gicharu who was commissioning a Sh5.4 million electrification project for the school, said the cartel was hiding behind the 30 per cent government policy on procurement for the youth, women and persons with disability to avoid tendering.

Special groups

"We at REA have made it clear that the 30 per cent procurement for special groups will go to the targeted groups and not individuals who want to violate the law and procedures," Gicharu said.

He added "All transformers must meet the highest standards set by Kenya Power and follow procurement regulation, no one will be asked to do a direct requisition."

The chairman regretted that vandals were slowing the process of power connection and urged Parliament to consider passing strict laws to tame them.

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