Government may pay $350 million more on the Kafue Gorge power Project

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A security man on guard at the ZESCO LTD Kafue Gorge power station
A security man on guard at the ZESCO LTD Kafue Gorge power station

THE Zambian Government may pay US$350 million more to the highest bidder in the construction of the 750MW Kafue Gorge Lower Power Station that will cost US$1.46billion, in a contract award that has left officials baffled.

The highest bid for the project that was processed in 2013 was US$1.48bn and the lowest bid was US$1.08bn both of which were from Chinese companies.

The company that has won the bid has a poor record of performance having been expelled from Botswana where it failed to meet targets and was subsequently forced to leave the project.

What has however baffled the officials is the manner in which the tender was conducted.

The tender for the project attracted 5 companies all of which met the pre-qualification conditions. But soon after and without any prior notification new post-qualification criteria and requirements were introduced in the bidding documents which were different from those of the pre-qualification phase. The new demands eliminated two of the world’s largest construction companies in civil engineering. The remaining conditions favoured only one company which subsequently was awarded the tender.

However, among the companies disqualified is one of Chinas largest hydro electric construction company with a turnover of US$200bn which bid for the project at US1.38bn. The losing companies wrote to the Zambia Public Procurement Authority protesting the breach of rules and advised government to halt the process until an investigation was undertaken. This advice was ignored.

But when contacted for a comment permanent secretary in the Ministry of Energy Emelda Chola promised to investigate the matter, saying she would come back after consulting because she was not at the Ministry when the tender was processed in 2013. Officials from the Ministry of Energy and Water Development confirmed to the Daily Nation that the companies that bid for the tender were all top ranked companies with worldwide construction experience.

“Zambia Public Procurement Authority was petitioned not to go ahead with the evaluation process because there was a contestation which needed to be resolved immediately but the process could not stop.

“The fact is that the nation will lose US$350million if this deal is allowed to proceed to the highest bidder. It’s with a heavy heart that we are blowing this out today because the same amount of money can be used to construct two more 200 mega watts hydro power stations,” one of the contractors said.

The officials said if the tender was re-evaluated, the nation would save about US$350million which could be channeled to other developmental projects such as roads, schools, hospitals and agriculture.

19 COMMENTS

  1. Build at yo own risk, come 2016 will be having new government , HH as president, then all the corrupt officials will know chimbokaila

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    • CHAKUMA FIMO FIMO, FORGET ABOUT HH. WHY CAN’T YOU FIND A REPLACEMENT FOR HH SO THAT UPND CAN ALSO WIN. DO NOT THINK ZAMBIANS ARE THAT DULL. PEOPLE CAN SEE THROUGH HH’s BRAINS. PEOPLE KNOW THAT HH IS NOT GOOD FOR PRESIDENCY. HIS CHANCE WAS AFTER THE DEATH OF MICHAEL SATA WHEN PF WAS DISORGANISED ALMOST BEYOND REPAIR. WITH DISORGANISED PF, STILL HH FAILED TO WIN. WHAT DOES THAT TELL YOU? PF ARE NOW SO ORGANISED AND THEY ARE NOT STUUPID- THEY ARE MAKING SURE THAT THE MOST IMPORTANT DEVELOPMENTAL PROJECTS ARE IMPLEMENTED. CHOOSE YOUR LEADER WITH A NATIONAL CHARACTER WHO TRUTHFULLY IDENTIFIES HIMSELF/HERSELF WITH THE PEOPLE OF ZAMBIA. HH IS A WRONG INVESTMENT AND TIME HAS TOLD US.

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  2. Africa twasebana.It’s shameful to have such pipo who are corrupt in the country.This Yaluma is very corrupt chap and doesn’t deserve to be a minister.He fired Chitundu who was capable of leading Zesco.I don’t know what’s happening with my Party PF.Why stealing like that mwebantu sure.Awe maybe black pipo are cursed.

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  3. That is why I have come to judge that this EL is a big failure because in all these he hardly says anything. What more evidence would one need in a case like this? All he says and wants is that he will win in 2016!!

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    • This has nothing to do with ECL, he was just a minister that time heading a different ministry. You need to wait and see what action he will take now that this has come out in the open!!!

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  4. Every one in PF is corrupt, that is why non of them are whistle blowers. They are all stealing, no one is accountable. Even now if the contract records are searched, no one will be found to have signed. Just like kariba, $500 million was spent and no one can account for that money. PF have evolved into a highly sophisticated corruption machine that rips of the country at every corner with certain tribes cheering them on because it is their tribes men doing the plunder.

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  5. Now we have the explanation for the continued Lots of Load-shedding (LOL) – corruption. It has taken someone more than 2 years to manipulate the tender documents so as to have that cut! Shame.

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  6. This explains why most African countries are poor. Due to greediness and selfishness among our leaders, corruption has been embraced as normal. The said Chinese Construction company was chased from Botswana due to shoddy work and possible corruption (Botswana does NOT tolerate corruption). Its hard to understand how we can embrace this questionable Chinese Construction Company in Zambia. The only logical explanation to this is – this Chinese Co. out-bribed the others. Where is ACC and what is their role in Zambia? For as along as ACC is not proactive in combating corruption, development in Zambia will remain a dream.

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  7. Every one in PF is corrupt, that is why non of them are whistle blowers. They are all stealing, no one is accountable. Even now if the contract records are searched, no one will be found to have signed. Just like kariba, $500 million was spent and no one can account for that money. PF have evolved into a highly sophisticated corruption machine that rips of the country at every corner with certain tribes cheering them on because it is their tribes men doing the plunder. Lungu is deep in plunder, that is why he has never mentioned the word financial corruption. We remember him and mulenga sata trying to steal from $230 million cctv corruption deal that was being forced on us while he was home affaires minister.

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  8. Every one in PF is corrupt, that is why non of them are whistle blowers. They are all stealing, no one is accountable. Even now if the contract records are searched, no one will be found to have signed. Just like kariba, $500 million was spent and no one can account for that money. PF have evolved into a highly sophisticated corruption machine that rips of the country at every corner with certain tribes cheering them on because it is their tribes men doing the plunder. Lungu is deep in plunder, that is why he has never mentioned the word financial corruption. We remember him and mulenga sata trying to steal from $230 million cctv corruption deal that was being forced on us while he was home affaires minister…

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  9. Abena bwali what do you expect? so this job has been earmarked for siphoning money for elections in 2016. Gosh, who was that person laughing at me when I decided to stay put at diaspora? Mediocrity like this acts as the major bottleneck for developing this country. Like Nawakwi rightfully put it: no solution lies with these politicians.

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  10. The loser, the “lowest” bidder is in fact not the lowest! Too many hidden things which only surface once the so called lowest bidder is awarded the contract. These are complex projects and one who bids the lowest to.push out genuine and serious bidders is a criminal. So ba UPND don’t comment on this that you don’t have expertise on. We know these companies and their tricks. Do you know why many projects have not taken off after the so called “lowest” bidder was awarded the contract? Have facts before you expose your ignorance.

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  11. Easy and cheap brains discuss people and wise and organised brains discuss ideas:if you and your leader are just attacking Lungu you are wasting your precious time,see you in 2085

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