Blacklisted Japan firm eyes vehicle inspection in TZ

Companies

Blacklisted Japan firm eyes vehicle inspection in TZ


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A Container Terminal within the Port of Mombasa. KEBS blacklisted EAA Company that bid for vehicle inspection. PHOTO | KEVIN ODIT | NMG

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Summary

  • EAA Company Limited, which was blacklisted by the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) in 2021, is looking to take advantage of policy change in Tanzania to bag a lucrative tender.
  • The PPRA blacklisted EAA following an application by the Auditor General’s office, which had found evidence that the Japanese firm used forged papers to bid for Kebs tenders in 2011, 2014 and 2019.
  • EAA and Auto Terminal Japan have sued the PPRA at the High Court to quash their blacklisting.

A Japanese firm blacklisted for using forged documents to win tenders floated by the Kenya Bureau of Standards (Kebs) has bid for a similar contract in Tanzania.

EAA Company Limited, which was blacklisted by the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) in 2021, is looking to take advantage of policy change in Tanzania to bag a lucrative tender for inspection of imported motor vehicles and spare parts.

The PPRA blacklisted EAA following an application by the Auditor General’s office, which had found evidence that the Japanese firm used forged papers to bid for Kebs tenders in 2011, 2014 and 2019.

KEBS tenders

The Auditor-General, National Assembly’s Public Investments Committee (PIC) and the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) all investigated EAA and another Japanese firm, Auto Terminal Japan, and concluded that the two companies used forged documents for the Kebs tenders.

EAA and Auto Terminal Japan have sued the PPRA at the High Court to quash their blacklisting.

Auto Terminal Japan obtained orders suspending its blacklisting, but EAA was denied any reliefs.

Both cases are still ongoing at the High Court.

Auto Terminal has also thrown its hat in the ring for the Tanzanian inspection contract.

The winning bidder will do inspections from countries where Tanzanians are importing vehicles and spare parts from.

Tanzania has been doing vehicle and spare parts inspections through agents in the countries of origin, following orders of former President John Pombe Magufuli.

But his successor, Samia Suluhu, last year ordered that the inspections be done at the Dar-es-Salaam port upon arrival.

Her directive has seen the Tanzania Bureau of Standards (TBS) invite companies interesting in being inspection agents to place their bids for the lucrative contract.

Public procurement

Interestingly, Tanzania’s laws stop any company blacklisted in other countries from doing public procurement.

Companies blacklisted elsewhere over corruption are not allowed to participate in Tanzania’s public procurement for 10 years. Those banned for other reasons are blacklisted in Tanzania for five years.

Despite the hurdle, EAA has sought to bag the lucrative tender. There is no indication yet on how much the winning bidder will generate in revenue each year.

In Kenya, the contract has been averaging Sh1.5 billion every year.

EAA had in December obtained orders from the Chief Magistrate’s Court suspending its debarment.

But the orders were lifted when it emerged that the firm had already filed a similar case at the High Court and was denied any reliefs.

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