………..Warns newly appointed Transport Minister Hara

LILONGWE-(MaraviPost)-The country’s civil right body Centre For Mindset Change (CMC) on Tuesday, December 7, 2021 lauded Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) for halting a MK48 billion contract that was awarded to Mota Engil to upgrade the Marka- Bangula railway line.

The graft busting body disowned Mota-Engil Afria over allegations of corrupt dealings in awarding of the contract by Ministry of Transport.

CMC told the news conference in the capital Lilongwe that ACB’s decision vindicates the grouping’s series of exposure on corrupt deals Mota-Engil was involved to acquire lucrative contracts.

Phillip Kamangirah, CMC Executive Director says Mota-Engil misconduct must not be entertained in any contract Malawi government wish to advertise in future.

Kamangirah therefore called for more probe on evaluation committee that was tasked to award Mota-Engil contract arguing that individuals are tantamount to prosecution if found guilty.

“CMC would like to call upon ACB to carry out investigations on each and every member of the evaluation committee of this railway tender. The second paragraph of the press release by ACB clearly states that the evaluation committee departed from the requirements of the bidding documents when evaluating the bids and that they intended to award Mota-Engil without basis.

“This clearly shows that there was something that pushed them to do this. It is therefore our call again for Ministry of Transport and Public works to never allow such members to be involved in any evaluation in the future,” says Kamangirah.

He however warned the newly appointed Transport Minister Jacob Hara to seriously assess his officials in the ministry ahead of his task.

“The newly appointed Transport Minister must in mind that he heads the corrupt department that his service to the nation will be tested,” warns Kamangirah.

ACB spokesperson Egrita Ndala told the nation on Saturday, December 4, 2021 that the bureau directed the Ministry of Transport and Public Works to re-evaluate the last three bidders within 15 working days.

Ndala said the bureau has directed the Ministry of Transport and Public Works to re-evaluate the last three bidders within 15 working days.

The Marka-Bangula railway section has four stations, which are considered for rehabilitation, the four include Mark Station, Nsanje Station, Tengani Station, and Bangula Station. the contract however was awarded to the Portuguese Contractor Mota Engil at the initial sum of USD70,035,427.94.

The rehabilitation works commenced in March 2018 and the initial period of performance was for 14 Months, which implied that the project should have been completed in May.

In September this year, the ACB stopped the Ministry of Transport and Public Works from awarding the contract for the upgrading of the same project over corruption allegations.

The whole was put to halt after the ministry published a notification for intention to award Mota-Engil a MK48billion contract for the construction of the 72Kilometre railway line.

Mota-Engil emerged as the successful Bidder with the lowest price (MK48, 244, 861, 524.98) against two others, China Railway (MK59 906 673 465.11) and China Civil Engineering (MK79 766 540 032.76.

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