Students selected to sharpen their skills at Mbandira community technical college will wait a little longer following Nkhotakota district assembly termination of contract from Makawira building contractor over fake National Construction Industry Council (NCIC) certificates.
Makawira building contractor secured a contract of worthy K24 million to renovate Mbandira community technical college in Nkhotakota.
Nkhotakota district director of planning and development (DPD) Mr. Griffin Mhango confirmed the termination of the contract with Makawira building contractor over irregularities surrounding the NCIC certificates presented to the council.
Mhango though, was quick to accept the mistake by the internal procurement committee for not involving the expertise from NCIC who could have certified the legality of the certificates submitted by the bidders.
“We made a mistake during the selection of the rightful bidder. We could have used the expertise from the NCIC to scrutinize the certificates presented to us to verify the validity of them.” he said.
According to Mhango, the project is expected to start soon and they won’t advertize but the contractor who was second from Makawira building contractor will be assigned for the project to avoid more delays.
But he could not disclose the contractor who seconded Makawira building contractor as this is unethical.
Nkhotakota district chairperson Bashiri Frank Ziyada said there are only four registered building contractors with NCIC at Nkhotakota boma which includes Mawira which he owns, Wilkem, Changu and Lebon while those registered with Malawi Building Civil Engineering and Allied Trade Association ( MABUCATA) are Mawira, Wilkem, Changu, Masumba, Manja Alutso and Chiyembekezo against 40 registered at Dwangwa in the district.
This shows that Makawira bulding contractor is missing in NCIC and MBUCATA list respectively.
When contacted the director of Makawira building contractor Lester Samuel Makawira referred the issue to Nkhotakota district assembly for more details of his contract termination.
“I can’t comment on the matter. The case is in court you rather talk to the assembly, police in Lilongwe at area 3 and NCIC,” said Makawira.
Central region police public relations officer Ramsy Mushane confirmed of the arrest of Lester Makawira but could not give more details as the case is in court.
Reports indicate that the project was not advertised as in a normal situation. Competitors only received cell-phone text messages informing them of the project and how they can apply and were given only three days to submit their bidding documents.
Nkhotakota contractors’ chairperson Mr. Bashiri Frank Ziyada has questioned the procurement process of Mbandira project.
“Contractors only received text messages and were given only three days to apply. That’s not normal.
When applying for such projects, you are supposed to buy a bidder document from the assembly but on this project it was totally free, why?” he questioned.
According to Ziyada, this tendency of awarding illegal contractors in Nkhotakota has contributed to having many unregistered contractors in the district more especially at Boma.
He said, not long ago, there were over 20 registered contractors at Nkhotakota Boma alone but now only four of them are remaining.
“Why should contractors value to be registered members of NCIC or MABUCATA while even without these bodies they still get jobs?” lamented Ziyada.
Ministry of labour and human power development, public relations Simon Mbvundula through an email confirmed of Mbandira community technical college delay but insisted that it is still in Phase 1.
He said, “Phase II will start in 2015/16 fiscal year. We anticipate the outstanding rehabilitation work to be completed in a month and then classes can start. Students and tutors are already identified, what is remaining is the completion of rehabilitation work.”
Mbundula went on to say, the tutors sent at the college have been relocated to other community colleges but was quick to say other tutors are already in place who will take up the posts once the rehabilitation work is completed.
He assured the general public that these delay incidents will be avoided in the second phase as this has been a lesson to them.
“This has been a good learning experience. As we go into second phase, we will ensure that planning is done ahead of time to avoid a recurrence of similar issues.”
President Peter Mutharika officially opened community colleges programme on Friday 20, 2015 at Ngala in Karonga district. In phase 1 they are 11 communities’ technical colleges and opened on January 19, 2015, of the number, two are yet to open which includes Mbandira and Tukombo in Nkhatabay.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :