Olive Telecommunications Now Defends itself Over Laptops Tender Saga

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The Indian firm at the centre of the laptops tender controversy has come out clean in its defense against claims and reports that it is unable to handle the Sh. 24.6 billion contract. In a statement released yesterday, Olive Telecommunications described itself as a reputable company which met all requirements as outlined in the tender documents, and blames politics for cancellation of the tender.

“The tender required proof of financial resources with a minimum of Sh3 billion. The Olive Consortium provided credit report from China Construction Bank Corporation, which confirms that they are financially capable to handle business in excess of Sh30 billion.” the company said in a statement.

The award of the Sh24.6 billion laptop tender to Olive Telecommunications was cancelled by the Public Procurement Administrative Review Board (PPARB) which stated that the company lacked the financial capability to implement the project, and it also quoted Sh1.4billion higher than the required threshold.

The board said that the company should have quoted Sh23.2 billion instead of Sh24.6 billion adding that the excess amount included by the company was to be used for some services which were supposed to be offered free. On financial capability, the board noted that Olive Telecommunications did not meet the annual turnover of Sh8 billion for the last three years from the time of awarding of the tender.

The process will now be reviewed within 45 days from the Best and Final Offer involving Haier Electrical Appliances Corporation Limited of China and HP. The cancellation of the tender by the PPARB comes after Haier Electrical Appliances Corporation Limited of China and HP filed an application last month on February 14 and 13 respectively to block the award tender by the Education Cabinet Secretary Jacob Kaimenyi on February 7. The first batch of 400,000 laptops to various schools was expected by the end of March this year.

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