By SILUMESI MALUMO
THE Zambia Public Procurement Authority (ZPPA) has launched investigations in a contract awarded to 10 foreign companies by Zesco.
Zesco has awarded the 10 foreign companies a contract to supply 150, 000 bulk of wooden poles.
ZPPA Director General Idah Chella, in a letter written to Zambia’s former Ambassador to Ethiopia, Emmanuel Mwamba, dated April 25, 2022, says they have taken keen interest in the matter and investigations have started.
Ms. Chella said this had been done in line with Section 6(2) (h) and 84(1) of the Public Procurement Act.
She said they have requested the power utility firm to expeditiously provide a report on the matter.
This follows an official complaint by Mr Mwamba to the Anti-Corruption Commission and the ZPPA.
Mr. Mwamba stated that the shortlisting and awarding of the tender to supply and deliver wooden poles using direct or limited bidding was very irregular and was likely driven by acts of corruption.
Mr. Mwamba stated that Zesco would have procured the wooden poles from the Zambia Forestry and Forest Industries Corporation Limited (ZAFFICO) as both ZAFFICO and the Zambia Manufacturers Association had disclosed that the country has enough wooden poles.
He said Zesco would externalise over US$107 million, a huge amount of money that could help with promoting local industry and the local supply chain.