NW firms cry foul over road contracts

Thu, 15 Dec 2016 11:54:28 +0000


CONTRACTORS domiciled in North Western Province have cried foul over the move by contractors from other regions to bid for contracts in the road sector.

Recently, the Road Development Agency (RDA) invited for bids from contractors to carry out routine maintenance on trunk, main and district roads in the province.

The invitation was open to firms registered in Zambia and those domiciled in North Western Province and the scope of works included vegetation control, desilting of drains and culverts, pothole patching and road line markings, among others.

But during the site visit, the local contractors were amazed to see that even contractors from other regions were part of the visit.

Most contractors talked to on condition of anonymity said they were not happy with the way contractors from other regions especially Copperbelt were rushing for contracts meant for the locals.

“When you look at the advert RDA has specified that only firms domiciled in the province should apply. But we are wondering why our colleagues are trying to grab such contracts from us,” one of the locals said.

Another contractor claimed the businessmen in the region were always denied opportunities to bid whenever such contracts were advertised elsewhere.

And the North Western Development Council of Elders have also sympathised with local contractors, saying such contracts should be left to locals.

Organisation chairperson Lucas Chikoti said he was surprised that people from other areas wanted to compete for small contracts meant for local firms.

“We are not trying to promote regionalism nor tribalism here, but as long as the owner of that firm stays here, regardless of their tribe, they are entitled to such contracts because we want the money to remain in the province so that our people can also benefit,” he said.

He said his organisation was waiting for final awarding of the contracts and that if they discovered that the majority were outsiders, they will be forced to intervene.


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