By Patience Nyangove
THE Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Works and Transport, Willem Goeieman, allegedly irregularly altered the ministry’s Tender Committee recommendations that Oshipe Turnkey be awarded the N$1 billion contract for the construction of the Prime Minister’s building and instead forwarded Babyface Civils to the Tender Board, Confidente has learnt.
Babyface Civils is owned by Vaino Nghipondoka and for the Prime Minister’s office project his company teamed up with a Chinese firm China Jiangxi International.
The explosive revelations according to sources are said to be contained in a Ministry of Works and Transport report.
The sources added that the report is now with the Deputy Minister of Works, James Sankwasa.
“The ministerial Tender Committee recommended Oshipe Turnkey in a joint venture with a Chinese company. PS changed the committee’s recommendation with Mr Booysen and an outside consultant to the project. This was changed to Babyface Civils without the knowledge of the Ministerial Tender Committee,” the sources said the report states.
According to sources the rot at the Tender Board, including TransNamib and its controversial joint venture with D&M Rail are also exposed in the alleged report.
The TransNamib joint venture with D&M rail has since sucked in Attorney General, Sacky Shanghala who is accused of favouring his friend James Hatuikulipi who has interests in D&M Rail.
“It is clear that this JV company was set up as a gateway for D&M to abuse a state owned enterprise, by tendering 0.00 for transport and compete on the basis of a lower tender amount and careless for depriving the already cash strapped SOE from an opportunity to collect revenue from the project. The fact that Namibia Rail Construction (NRC) is a subsidiary of TransNamib does not warrant it to contract TransNamib services at no cost,” the sources claim.
The sources add that the report exposes NRC for failing to submit required test results on the tender closing date of October 13 2015 as well as to submit a written approval from TransNamib infrastructure.
“Did the TransNamib board seek the Minister’s consent in order to conduct this commercial business of ballast transporting services through this subsidiary for the tender in question? In the absence of the Minister’s consent Namibia Rail Construction’s intention to utilise TransNamib to transport even at zero cost must render it to be disqualified (sic).
“Secondly, without the Minister’s consent, the establishment of Namibia Rail is null and void of which it contravenes TransNamib’s own act of Parliament,” the sources claim the report reads in part.
The report is said to detail that Eagle Customs Clearance had submitted all required tender documents and tests within the specified tender deadline but was being treated unfairly because of the Attorney General who wants to ensure his friend benefits from the contract.
“Last week’s Tender Board decided to ask this same AG’s opinion to cancel the tender as the engineers falsely told the board that both Eagle Customs and Namibia Rail submitted test results late in December 2015, but only Namibia Rail submitted late test results. Why should the Ministry agree this priority project to be cancelled just because individuals in the board failed to influence the awarding decision?
“Namibia Rail’s tender is unresponsive in all aspects, its tender price is prohibited, a zero rated transport cost is forbidden, and their late submitted test results must be rejected. Windhoek Consulting Engineers should not be allowed to relax tender requirements during the evaluation to favour Namibia Rail after other companies have exhausted all their efforts in fulfilling the tender rules and requirements. All tenderers should be treated equally or else these engineers must be blacklisted,” the report states.
When contacted for comment, Goeieman said “The ministerial tender committee they advise me. The consultancy recommended Babyface and the tender committee recommended Oshipe and I had to decide on Babyface because it made more sense to choose them for the project,” Goeieman said.
The report according to sources digs into the rot at the Works Ministry also reveals how when its ministerial committee had recommended to the Tender Board that Amupolo Building Contractors be allocated a contract to construct the new Omusati Education Office at Outapi one of the officials in the ministry in a bid to have the tender cancelled changed the recommended company and put another company.
“The Ministry recommended a joint venture company to the Tender Board. The Tender Board referred it back to only apply to 100 percent Namibian owned companies. The ministry then recommended Amupolo Building Contractors as a 100 percent Namibian owned company. Someone then changed the recommended company and forwarded again a joint venture company to purposely delay the project for probable cancellation,” part of the report reads.
Confidente was also informed that the Windhoek offices for the Ministry of Information Communication Technology has been delayed after an official from the Works Ministry cancelled the contract. “Phase II could not start due to lack of funds. Companies were consulted of which some of them indicated their willingness to fund and proceed with the project. A PPP (Public Private Partnership) arrangement was agreed upon but could not be implemented for reasons known to the board. The responsible ministry felt betrayed by our ministry for not concluding this project on time. They are unhappy with the cancellation that was recommended by someone from the Ministry and not the Ministerial Tender Committee.”
When contacted for comment, the Deputy Minister of Works and Transport refused to comment on the specific contents of the report saying he is yet to receive it.
He however had this to say: “As a leader, I believe strongly in the provisions of article 18 of the Namibian Constitution which requires administration bodies and officials to act fairly both in terms of legislation and customary law. I am yet to see the report and I believe we will act fairly and if there is evidence of any unfairness we need to act in terms of the constitutional provision.”
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015