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CORRUPT MoH DEAL EXPOSED – Ministry of Health awards a K6.7 million construction tender to a media company, sparking yet again corruption allegation

By NATION REPORTER 

ANGRY construction companies have protested the corrupt awarding of tenders by the Ministry of Health to companies whose core businesses have nothing to do with construction, sparking yet again fraud allegations.   

The Ministry of Health has awarded a construction tender to a media company to construct New Maternity Annexes, New Mothers’ Shelter and renovate three staff houses in Chikankata, Siavonga, Gwembe, Mazabuka, Monze and Pemba respectively.

SJ Top Brands Media Limited has been awarded two tenders at a total value of K6.7 million to construct New Maternity Annexes at Nansenga and Sianyolo Health Centres in Chikankata and Siavonga respectively as well as a Mothers’ Shelter in Gwembe district.

However, it has been revealed that SJ Top Brands Media Limited has nothing to do to with construction as its core business, according the Patents and Companies Registration Agency (PACRA) is advertising, marketing research and public opinion polling.   

According to a best evaluated bidder notice, the Ministry has announced the successful bidders among which are two companies believed to have been irregularly given the tender as they allegedly did not meet the procurement requirements and qualifications. 

The Ministry of Health has also awarded a tender of up to 8.5 million to Davisbet Enterprises Limited for the construction and extension office block, Maternity Annexes and Mothers’’s Shelters in Choma’s Mbabala, Namwala and Sinazongwe Districts respectively.   

The Ministry of Health has awarded six tenders to four out of 81 companies that had bid for the tender and two of the companies are believed to have been given the tender without following procurement procedures.

A Daily Nation search has however revealed that SJ Top Brands Media Limited and Davisbet Enterprises Limited, the two companies that have been awarded the biggest tenders were not listed with the National Construction Council (NCC).  

The revelations that a media company has been awarded a construction tender has angered the construction companies many of whom had bided for the tender but could not be considered even when they had met all the procurement requirements. 

The construction companies are now accusing the Ministry of Health of engaging in corruption by awarding tenders to companies that were neither qualified nor members of the National Construction Council.

The Ministry of Health floated a tender number MOH/ORD/W/004/22 for the proposed renovations and installations of water reticulation for the proposed Maternity Annexes, Mothers’ Shelters, Out-Patient Department (OPD), Mother and Child Health Facility (MCH), Staff Houses and Borehole Drilling, Equipping and Reticulation at various facilities in respective districts of Easter (14) and Southern (13) Provinces under the Peace Health Program. 

It has been revealed that out of the 81 companies that bided for the tender, only four companies had been awarded the six lots with two of the companies having been awarded two lots each.

This has sparked anger among the construction companies which now allege that the awarding of the tenders to SJ Top Brands Media Limited at a total sum of about K6.7 million for the construction of the new Maternity Annexes in Chikankata, Siavonga and Gwembe districts in Southern Province under lot 1 smacked of corruption.

SJ Top Brands Media Limited has also been awarded a tender to construct New Maternity Annex in Mazabuka, Renovation of three staff houses at Siatontola Health Centre in Monze District and Completion of an existing staff house at Kazimaulu Health Centre in Pemba District in Southern Province.

According to the best evaluated bidder notice, out of the 81 biders, only four have emerged as best evaluated bidders with SJ Top Brands Media Limited and Davisbet Enterprises Limited having been given two lots at the total valued K6.7 million and K8.5 million respectively.

The other four best evaluated bidders included Chacycan Enterprises Limited which has been awarded a tender worth K3.5 million, JDB Greentech Zambia Limited which has a tender worth K4.7 million, Tesco Works and Supply Limited with a tender value of K3.7 million and Triple V Property Investment Limited which has been gifted a tender worth K1.7 million. 

Efforts to get a comment from Ministry of Health Permanent Secretary Professor Lackson Kasonka failed as calls placed on his mobile phone went unanswered by press time.  

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