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Bid to stop Safaricom/ Police tender heads to court

04 June 2014, 19:52 Victor Tinto

Nairobi - A group of activists has gone to court to challenge a deal that will see mobile service provider Safaricom provide the police with intelligence platforms.

Two activists have moved to court to stop an alleged irregular tender to provide the National Police Service with an Intergrated Public Safety Communication and Surveillance system.

In a bid to protect Kenyan Tax payers from the risk of losing billions of shillings, activists Okiya Omtata and Nyakina Gisebe who filed the suit Wednesday, want the single sourcing tender award contract signed between the government of Kenya and Safaricom Limited to supply and install the Integrated Public Safety Communication and Surveillance System be suspended.

Omtata and Gisebe also want the government be compelled by the court to produce copies of the alleged signed contract in the suit against the Attorney General, Safaricom limited and the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission.

The two allege the contract signing was marred with corruption and fraudulent practises during procurement and termed the case as extremely urgent.

They allege that the sued parties’ actions and omissions amount to a scheme designed for personal gain by procuring the Integrated Public Safety Communication and Surveillance System at artificial, non-competitive price levels whilst depriving Kenyan taxpayers the benefits of a free and open competition.

"The balance of convenience favours a suspension of the ongoing single sourcing procurement process of the Integrated Public Safety Communication and Surveillance System, in favour for procurement through competitive bidding, we want a temporary order barring the Government of Kenya, through the AG from proceeding to give effect, in any way whatsoever, to this procurement, said Mr Omtata.

They claim the government has violated the constitution on matters relating to government expenditure, the Public Procurement and Disposal Act, the Public Officer Ethics Act, the Leadership and Integrity Act 2012, and the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission Act in single courcing Safaricom.

They argue that procuring for the IntegratedPublic Safety Communication and Surveillance System does not have the legal capacity to oust constitutional provisions that lay down the law on public procurement, integrity,national values and others.

“Even if the project is security related, the Government ought to have issued a tender limited to security firms but failed to do so, the system to be tendered for ought to have been designed and developed by the police to meet their unique but critical needs, “ they claimed.

They further claim that since the Integrated Public Safety Communication and Surveillanc System will be financed by the Kenyan taxpayer they are demanding that due diligence is necessary, and savings must be made through competitive bidding without compromising on quality.

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