A scheme to cancel a tender for cleaning services by the Principal of Kisumu National Polytechnic has been stopped by The Public Procurement Administrative Review Board (PPARB) after the winner, Candy and Candy Cleaning Services successfully filed a review request.
The Board has taken Council Secretary Catherine Kelonye and the Chief Principal to task over the issue together with the College’s Governing Council Chairman Meshack Kidenda for advertising a tender in full knowledge that the college did not have a budget for cleaning services.
Kidenda was the first Director General of the Kenya National Highways Authority, while Kelonye had previously served at Sigalagala National Polytechnic from 2010 to September 2020, before she was deployed to Kisumu National Polytechnic as the Chief Principal. Other board members are Joyce Mwanika Mwale, Prof. Eng. Bernadette Waswa Sabuni, Geoffrey Kibanda, Lilian Mainye, Roseline D.A. Odhiambo Odede, and Rajeer Arora.
In a ruling dated September 11, 2023, the Board declared null and void a letter terminating tender number TKNP/T/2023/2024/9 on grounds of inadequate budgetary provisions to be nullified and set aside. Further, the board also gave orders to the principal to direct the evaluation committee to re-admit all tenders submitted within 14 days.
When the tender was advertised, 17 firms sent their bids, and after the first evaluation, seven firms were determined non-responsive while ten firms were responsive. At the end of the second evaluation stage, seven tenders were found to be non-responsive, while three tenders were responsive, including that of Candy and Candy Cleaning Services.
At the end of the evaluation process, Candy and Candy Cleaning Services was the lowest bidder at Ksh. 710,000 per month and were recommended for the award of the tender. In a professional opinion dated August 9, 2023, the supply chain manager, Milton Omollo, revealed that the recommended price for the subject tender was above the college’s budget. The principal approved the professional opinion on August 17, 2023, and declared that the tender process was cancelled.
The ruling reads in part, “Having found that the respondents did not satisfy the substantive and procedural statutory pre-conditions of termination of procurement proceedings, the board finds and holds that the purported termination of procurement proceedings of the subject tender was unlawful and illegal. We find it just to nullify and set aside, which we hereby do”.