KISUMU 12TH JANUARY 2018: The County Government of Kisumu has defended the Kisumu Urban Project (KUP) over the award of a Sh 99 million road tender to a contractor based outside the county.
The road project is one of the tens of opportunities in the Sh 4 billion French Government-funded initiative, including the constructions of five model schools, five bitumen standard roads, three gravel roads, three markets, 28 and floodlights.
Deputy Governor Mathews Owili says no local contractor placed bid for the 2.1 kilometre road project, forcing them to settle on Nairobi-based firm, Ascoda, associated with Former Mwea MP Alfred Nderitu.
"For specificity and in the case of Nyamasaria-Magadi Road, only three bids were received, from Pepeta Holdings of Nairobi, Ascoda General Contractors Ltd of Nairobi and Tosha Construction Engineering Ltd also of Nairobi. The three firms were evaluated on their technical grounding from the December 29, 2016 to the January 4, 2017. "
The county government had received a bashing from residents who claimed the county leadership had ignored local contractors at the expense of established ‘foreign’ firms.
Mr. Owwili advised local contractors to consider forming a consortium while bidding for some of these projects,
“Let me proffer a word of advice and encouragement to the firms who might have felt that the bar is set quite high with regard to some of these projects. The way to go is consortium bids. We must leverage on the different strengths that we have to help move as one big entity. This will go a long way in laying the ground for the much needed capacity."
The current outrage follows another case in which KUP, in September 2014, had awarded Sh100 million floodlight tender to Nairobi-based Match Electricals Company, sparking controversy over the ability of local contractors to undertake projects of such big magnitude.