The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) is rushing to conclude the evaluation of a Sh3 billion tender for a system to manage this year’s General Election.
On Wednesday, it said it would comply with orders of the Public Procurement Administrate Review Board to conclude evaluation and award the deal to Gemalto SA, a French firm.
“The Commission notifies you that following the ruling by the board on March 9, the tender will proceed to conclusion from where it was stopped,” said Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chairman Ezra Chiloba in a March 10 letter to one of the bidders, Compulynx Limited.
The tender is for the supply, delivery, installation, testing, commissioning and support of the integrated elections management systems to be used by the IEBC during the elections.
“The procuring entity is at liberty to proceed and conclude the procurement process by carrying out a financial evaluation on the bidder who was recommended as being successful at the technical evaluation stage namely M/S Gemalto S.A,” said the Public Procurement Administrative Review Board in its ruling.
The system is meant to integrate the existing biometric voter registration, the biometric voter identification, the electronic results transmission and the political party and candidate registration systems.
It is a key component of the technology IEBC is supposed to deploy to ensure the entire electoral process is transparent, secure, verifiable, reliable and highly available during voter registration, candidate registration, voter verification and results transmission.
Already voter registration has been done without it and it may not be possible for IEBC to procure the system before the start of the register’s verification on May 20.
The board also ordered IEBC to conclude the financial evaluation and award the tender within 30 days from the day of the date of the opening.
When the IEBC opened the tender last month, the technical team knocked off all other bidders, leaving Gemalto S.A. as the only company to proceed to the evaluation stage.
On February 28, IEBC terminated the tender so it could invite fresh bids.
However, before it restarted the procurement process, one of the bidders, Avante International Technology, challenged the IEBC’s decision to terminate the tender.
At the time of the termination, the board had issued stay orders but the IEBC cancelled the tender.
Source: Daily Nation