Story by a concerned bidder Yamikani Nicholas Kachingwe
The Department of Disaster Management(DoDMA) an institution under the office of the President(OPC) advertised several tenders/bids on 3rd August 2021,closing date was 1st September,2021.
●They clearly indicated their targeting recognised MSME’S who are registered at ministry of trade,they further clarified that preference will be given to Indigenous Malawians.
● The bid validity was 120 days( 4 Months).
● Samples were requested as a mandatory requirement for specific items upon submission of bid document.
● They further assured us that evaluated results shall be announced publicly through ‘notification of intention to award contract’ published in leading newspapers and individual email addresses.
Our company participated in two tenders,namely;
(1) Various Relief Items: 090/IPDC/DoDMA/2021-22/07
(2) Working Materials: 090/IPDC/DoDMA/2021-22/07.
My grievances against the Internal Procurement and Disposal Committee (IPDC) of DoDMA among many are that i feel they ignored to abide by their own requirements and mandate and as well overlooking the rule of law by obstructing fair and just procurement practices to propel the MSME Order gazzeted a year ago.
After the elapse of bid validity,the IPDC didn’t communicate to any participating bidder(maybe they did) but for a fact i know they didn’t communicate to us on why the results were delayed or the reasons thereof or to seek extension of bid validity.
I took it upon myself to investigate this matter thoroughly and i was shocked to learn that The IPDC has now started issuing contracts to their “assumed” evaluated suppliers behind doors.
On 28th March,2022. I booked an appointment with the Procurement officer Madam Kezzia Mkandi,she agreed to meet me with her colleagues at 15H30(3:30pm) in their procurement department office, Capital Hill.
I enquired about the results for both tenders. She responded that the Working Materials tender results are currently on hold until further notice but the relief item tender results were out and they have identified their successful bidders and my bid was not successful. Due to my failure to comply to Technical Specifications. Names of successful companies were not revealed.
In which i appealed to her to reveal the said failure. She replied i only indicated my compliance with a picture/image of the item without any description.
I was shocked to learn about this as according to their bid document it was indicated that we may put a drawing or an image or literature to indicate our compliance. Besides that we were requested to attach samples for the specific items we were bidding for,which i did. Am flabbergasted to learn that i did not complied yet physical samples were submitted for their reference.
Madam Kezzia in front of her colleagues(Madam Jackie and Mr Ngayiye) who formed a forum,said that PPDA told them during their evaluation process to ignore and to not use the samples as reference. In short the samples were disregarded and remained unused in their warehouse behind Admarc Depot along Chilambula road. A fact which she failed to substantiate that truly PPDA advised so.
On the issue of not publishing the evaluated bid results,her response was that they got a waiver from PPDA due to Cyclone Anna,as it was a matter of urgency,strangely during the momentum of the natural disaster,contracts were not awarded. They have started awarding the contracts on this very same day we held the meeting.
• DoDMA’s IPDC wasted all bidder’s time and resources used in purchasing samples while they knew for gospel truth they won’t be used in their evaluation process,which is not only misleading but a cause of concern. As all samples in hundreds are just gathering dust at their warehouse. I parted ways with not less than K300,000. And yet it was put to waste. Am yet to collect my samples and see their state of condition. Every tambala i spen on them shall be refunded in full. If any are in bad shape.
• DoDMA’s IPDC failed to finalize within their bid validity and failed to inform bidders,they went further to seek a waiver from PPDA not to publish results and award contracts during Cyclone Anna but that too was not fulfiled. They failed to communicate to unsuccessful bidders as well. This just shows either it was deliberate for the sole purpose of corrupt activities or just pure incompetence.
• Findings from my investigation are alleging that 35 companies were found successful among the 100 plus something companies that participated in the tender.
Among these 35 companies,7 companies have been awarded more than 1 lot,due to sensitivity of this matter,i shall not disclose their trading names;
○ First company has three lots: Plastic pails with,with taps and black plastic sheet
○ Second Company has 3 lots: Bales of Sugar, Ropes and Tarpulins.
○ Third Company has 2 lots: Kitchen Salt & Likuni Phala
○ Fourth Company has 2 lots: Plastic pails with lids and taps
○ Fifth company has 2 lots: Blanket and Printed 50kg empty bags
○ Sixth Company has 2 lots: Large Family and small family tents.
○ Seventh Company has 2 lots: Blankets & Printed 50kg empty bags.
28 companies have been awarded one lot each. Totalling 35 contracts under Various Relief Item framework agreement for the period of 2022 to 2023.
Am not sure if they’re well deserving or not,as am yet to go through the evaluation report.
One thing is certain the whole evaluation process is a mess,unprocedural,biased and deliberately done in a way to sidelined other bidders for reasons behest to the IPDC.
Dodma is always in the paper for wrong reasons. I remember Hon Ganda once lamented on their unprocedural Awardment of Goat contract to an individual based in the lower shire regardless he/she was the most expensive bidder.
DoDMA was in the paper lamenting that people are no longer donating to them. How can they? When Dodma was implicated in the abuse of Covid-19 funds.
Therefore! Am appealing to bidders who participated in this tender to take DoDMA to task to publish the results publicly and as well to give back all samples.
To say the truth DoDMA is a sham,an embarrassment to the office of the President.