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IEBC to use ‘shortcut’ route in tender for supply of ballot papers

IEBC Chief Executive Officer Ezra Chiloba. [File,Standard]

The electoral commission will not re-advertise an open tender for the supply of Sh2.5 billion contract for the printing of ballot papers.

Instead, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has resorted to restricted tendering.

Under this system, all the firms that participated in the initial doomed tender will be asked to give their proposals for supply of about 120 million ballot papers.

Other firms

The commission will also ask any other firms that have expressed interest to give their quotations before starting an evaluation process to pick the most suitable firm.

This decision was arrived at following a protracted fight in the initial tender when the commission awarded Dubai based Al Ghurair Printing and Publishing, culminating in a high court ruling that nullified the award.

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Justice George Odunga then ordered the electoral agency to start the process afresh after finding the commission had violated the law by awarding the tender when commissioners where not in office legally.

Yesterday, The Standard learnt that IEBC will today dispatch letters to over ten firms that had either participated in last year’s open tender or expressed interest.

“The IEBC is inviting all the vendors who participated in the last one together with those who have since expressed interest to supply ballot papers to Kenya. That will be the most logical and fair approach in the circumstance,” Chief Electoral Officer Ezra Chiloba said.

The successful bidder will have a month to receive an order, print and deliver the about 120 million papers; which means IEBC has up to June 30 to pick the contractor.

Meeting deadlines

“Our target is to ensure that by mid-May, we have an idea of who the supplier of the ballot papers shall be,”said Chiloba.

This means Al Ghurair could still benefit from the deal as it’s among those that will considered in the direct procurement.

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Other firms in the tender are Ellams products limited (Kenya), Manipal Technologies (India), Paarl Media (South Africa), Kl-hitech (India) and Eabaltijas (Lativia)

Digital Printing Supply (Italy), Tall Security Printing and United Printing and Publishing (UK) are also in the tender. 

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