KenGen gets nod for biometric card tender
Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen) has been given the greenlight to proceed with the tender for the supply of biometrically controlled smart card technology with SMS Alert, which had been blocked following a suit by a local manufacturer who cited discrimination.
The Public Procurement Administrative Review Board (PPARD) dismissed the case by Smart Applications International Ltd, paving the way for the utility firm to proceed with the multi-million shilling tender which was awarded to LCT Africa Limited.
LCT Africa Limited, a joint venture of two firms, namely, Compulynx Limited and Liasion Healthcare Limited were awarded the tender by KenGen after meeting all the preliminary and mandatory requirements including the ability to install bio-metric smartcard readers at any health service provider in Kenya and East Africa a cost of Sh10,002,400 per year.
Smart Applications International Ltd which provides Biometric, Smart cards and Medical cards had approached the Board accusing KenGen of discrimination in the award of the tender which was advertised in May this year when it was disqualified on account of failure to submit a stamped price schedule as was required under the Tender Document.
“The procuring entity (KenGen) failed to promote transparency, fairness and integrity of the procurement process by unlawfully disqualifying the applicant’s bid on the basis of technicality that does not affect the substantive bid, despite it having met all other requirements therein,” argued Smart Applications International Ltd. But the Board in its decision, however, dismissed the suit, saying that Smart Applications International Ltd bid was rightfully evaluated and KenGen acted in accordance with the constitution, statutory and Public procurement and Disposal Act in the tendering process and award of the contract to LCT Africa Limited.
“In our view, an applicant who fails to meet the mandatory requirements which have otherwise been met by other bidders cannot expect any preferential treatment,” reads the decision by the board in part. The board further noted that if the requirements explicitly provided for in the blank tender documents were to be “waived”and or “flagged” as minor for any one bidder, it will run a travesty to the hallowed provision of the principles of fairness as espoused in Article 227(1) of the Constitution.
“It would mean that the applicant’s tender would be evaluated differently from those of the other bidders. The intended uniformity in evaluating bids received would be clearly be lost and with it the very essence of making standard provisions and criteria for Tender Evaluations,” the Board said.
After dismissing the request for review of the award of the tender number KGN-HR-05-2022, the board ordered KenGen to continue with process of procuring biometric smart card technology with SMS alert to its logical conclusion including preparing and entering in a contract with LCT Africa Ltd in a accordance with section 135(3) of the Act.