The Zambia Public Procurement Authority has advised the Electoral Commission of Zambia to review the tender to print ballot papers for the August elections.
This was after the Commission recommended that the multi million-dollar tender be awarded to a Dubai based printing firm.
Commission Chairman Justice Esau Chulu told a meeting of political party representatives this morning at Mulungushi International Conference Centre that the ZPPA has written to ECZ advising that the tender be reviewed.
Justice Chulu said this follows the objections raised by all the 13 companies that participated in the tender against the awarding of the tender to the Dubai firm.
He however reiterated that the Commission has not awarded the tender to anyone but merely recommended that Alghurairi Printing & Publishing LLC of Dubai be awarded the firm.
Justice Chulu also appealed to political players who have objected to the ECZ’s choice of printer to provide tangible evidence to the Commission.
The ZPPA’s intervention is the latest twist in the controversial tender after ECZ Director Priscilla Isaac maintained that the Commission’s choice of the printer is final as prescribed in the ECZ Act.
Earlier today, Political parties took the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) to task demanding an explanation why it has insisted on awarding the contract to print ballot papers to a company in Dubai.
During a heated (ECZ) stakeholders meeting in Lusaka this morning, political party presidents who included vice president Inonge Wina, UPND president Hakainde Hichilema, FDD President Edith Nawakwi, Green party President Peter Sinkamba, People’s Party president Mike Mulongoti, Poor people’s party Alex Muliokela and many others also expressed concern on the country holding the referendum alongside the general election.
UPND president Hakainde Hichilema said that it was sad that despite stakeholders writing to the ECZ on the decision to print ballots in Dubai, they have not paid attention to the concerns raised.
FDD President Edith Nawakwi asked the Commission to explain how they are working out modalities for security officers who will be sent to other towns to police the election process.
Ms Nawakwi says the commission should avail the list of the officers and where they will be sent to political parties.
Meanwhile the ECZ has announced that official campaigns for the general election will commence on the 16th May, 2016 and close on the 10th August, 2016.