By BRANDON JOSPHAT
ZIMBABWE’S clerk of Parliament Kennedy Chokuda has bowed to all-round pressure and cancelled the controversial US$2m tender to procure computers at high prices.
This comes after Treasury criticised the tender to buy 173 laptops and 79 desktops at
US$9 264 and US$3 076 per gadget respectively from Mid-End Computers and Hardware and Blinart Investments.
In a letter dated September 22 and addressed to the two local companies, Chokuda cancelled the tender — saying the costs were beyond the reach of the august house and against its financial rules.
“In accordance with section 42 of the Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Assets Act, you are hereby notified that the tender for the supply and delivery of 173 laptops and 79 desktops … has been cancelled in the public interest.
“It is the Parliament of Zimbabwe’s considered view that it is not morally and prudentially justifiable to purchase the goods at the tendered price.
“It is in this context that the initially awarded tender could not be fully concluded,” Chokuda said, adding that Parliament would soon re-issue the tender.
There was a huge outcry from the public a fortnight ago after a letter written by the permanent secretary in the Finance ministry, George Guvamatanga, calling for the cancellation of the tender was leaked.
“Treasury notes with concerns that these suppliers are charging U$9 264,48 and US$3 076,61 for a laptop and desktop respectively.
“These US dollar prices have been exorbitantly inflated way beyond those that are prevailing in the market and hence, are not acceptable.
“Notwithstanding the high prices, this tender award is in complete disregard of the Treasury minute dated 3 August 2022, directing line ministries to ensure value for money for the government to rationalise all procurement processes with a view to operating within the confines of the willing buyer willing seller foreign exchange rate,” Guvamatanga said then. – Daily News