Former nominated senator goes to court seeking to have 2022 polls postponed

Former nominated senator goes to court seeking to have 2022 polls postponed

BY KORIR JUMA,NAIROBI,6TH SEPT,2021-Former nominated Senator Paul Njoroge now wants the next General Election to be postponed.

In a petition filed in court on Monday, Njoroge argues that the procurement being undertaken by IEBC is illegal.

Njoroge says the commission was not properly constituted when the declaration for the next General Election date was made.

“The intended presidential election of 9th August is imposed on the people of Kenya through an administrative fiat of the IEBC and therefore illegal, irregular and illegitimate,” Njoroge says.

He also argues that the term for President Uhuru Kenyatta and DP William Ruto will lapse in November because the last elections were held on October 26, 2017.

However, the Constitution requires that a General Election be held on the second Tuesday in August in every fifth year.

This means that the next general election is supposed to happen on August 9, 2022.

This comes as the Procurement Review Administrative Board ordered the electoral agency to float a fresh tender for the supply of the Kenya Integrated Elections Management System within 45 days.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission, in the process of procuring the state-of-the-art information system for use in the 2022 General Election, set the local preference margin at 15 per cent.

A firm trading as Risk Africa Innovations Limited, which did not bid, challenged the process, accusing the IEBC of breaking the law by setting 40 per cent preference award to local contractors.

In an affidavit, Henry Mien, a director at the firm, argued that the IEBC sought to define the local content to a maximum of 15 per cent.

He argued that the tender document was unlawful, citing failure to comply with the procurement law, which the IEBC challenged, saying “the bidder should provide a detailed support and maintenance plan by attaching documentary proof of ICT technical support staff with a local registered office in Kenya.”

The board concurred that IEBC did not provide that foreign companies participating in the tender outline how they will source 40 per cent of their supplies locally.

“The procurement entity has the mandatory duty to ensure that the preference margins are clearly spelt out in the tender documents,” the board, chaired by Faith Waigwa, said.

“This serves the purpose of notifying and encouraging eligible local and citizen contractors who may qualify for preference margins to know in advance and the parameters that will be used to apply the same.”

The board has faulted the IEBC for purporting to prescribe for themselves applicable margins other than those prescribed in the procurement regulations.

“In line with the principles of accountability and transparency in public procurement, the same cannot be left to the vagaries of conjecture and speculation,” the board said.

“It is apparent that the tender document makes no mention of the specific quantity of local supplies that must be sourced locally by foreign tenderers as required by section 157 of the Act.”

The board said that in the circumstances, “the tender document violates the Act and Regulations 2020 that entitles local or citizen contractors to preferences when participating in an open tender.”

It established that the tender document failed to provide that all foreign tenderers participating in an international tender secure at least 40 per cent supplies for citizen contractors before submitting a tender.

The IEBC floated the tender to undo the wrongs cited by the Supreme Court ruling that nullified the 2017 presidential election pitting political rivals-turned-allies President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga.

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