Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting Services, Amos Malupenga, has clarified that no contract has been awarded to any company for the commissioning of a national digital terrestrial television broadcasting system in Zambia.
And Mr. Malupenga has described the conduct by Star Software Technologies Company Limited, the preferred bidder for the job, to issue a media statement on the ongoing tender process as misleading, unprofessional and uncalled for.
Mr. Malupenga has however explained that Star Software Technologies Company Limited has been selected as a preferred bidder to be awarded a contract subject to meeting all conditions stipulated in the Zambia Public Procurement Authority (ZPPA) Act.
He was reacting to media reports in some newspapers and online publications that quoted Star Software Technologies Company Limited as having said government had awarded a contract to the company for the digital migration programme.
Mr. Malupenga explained that after the closure of receiving bids, a ministerial committee met to evaluate all the bids that were submitted and settled for Star Software Technologies Company Limited as a preferred bidder.
He further explained that Huawei Technologies Company Limited, ZTE Corporation, Gospell Digital Technology Company Limited and King Tai Investments Zambia Limited were unsuccessful bidders.
The Permanent Secretary said reasons for rejecting Huawei Technologies Company Limited’s bid were non compliant, supply of partial quantities and omission of items.
Mr. Malupenga said as for ZTE Corporation, the reasons were non compliant, omissions of items, non compliant to technical specifications while Gospell Digital Technology Company Limited’s bid was rejected for non compliant, bid security and partial quantity.
He pointed out that King Tai Investments Zambia Limited’s bid was rejected for non compliant and insufficient proof of similar contracts handled on television broadcasting equipment.
Mr. Malupenga added that late last month, the ministry issued a notice in the Times of Zambia and the Zambia Daily Mail newspapers informing all the five bidders and other interested parties of its decision to settle for Star Software Technologies Company Limited as its preferred bidder.
He further said the notice, did not in itself constitute an award of contract and bidders that were aggrieved had the right to appeal under ZPPA Act within ten working days excluding the labour day and weekends.
Meanwhile, Mr. Malupenga has described the conduct by Star Software Technologies Company Limited to issue a media statement on the ongoing tender process as misleading, unprofessional and uncalled for.
Mr. Malupenga said he does not understand the intentions of Star Software Technologies Company Limited to issue a statement to the media when the firm knows too well that the ministry can only award them a contract after the Ministry of Justice under the Office of the Attorney General had done its work.
Zambia will join the rest of the world in migrating from the analogue to digital television in June 2015.
For this reason, government is expected to award a contract to a company to supply, deliver, install and commission a national digital terrestrial television broadcasting system in Zambia before the deadline.