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Ministry rejects Shakeel’s petition

Ministry rejects Shakeel’s petition

Service retenders 400,000 MT wheat supply

The Public Procurement & Property Administration Agency and Ministry of Finance and Economic Corporation (MoFEC) rejected the complaint lodged by the Pakistan-based Shakeel & Company regarding the latest wheat purchase tender worth 2.6 billion birr.

It is to be recalled that the company was announced winner of the latest wheat supply contract to the Government of Ethiopia (GoE) worth 2.6 billion birr.

On behalf of GoE, Ethiopian Trading Business Corporation has signed a contract with Shakeel where the later agreed to supply 400,000 metric tons (MT) of wheat.

However, following the signing of the contract, in a letter signed by Mengistu Kebede, Chief Executive Officer of the Corporation on January 26, 2018, Shakeel was informed of the termination of the contract and cancellation of the entire bid process.

“Having been notified through a letter of award and signing the contract on December 29, 2017 to supply 400,000 MT milling wheat, the Corporation has come to realize that Shakeel is not in a position to provide performance bond as per the contract,” read the letter.

The performance guarantee was worth USD 10 million. Before the cancellation of the contract, the company has requested Public Procurement & Property Disposal Service, an agency handling the bid process on behalf of the Corporation, for 15 days extension to submit required performance bond/guarantee.

However, this also bore no fruit.

“We kindly inform your esteemed company the cancellation of the contract as per the award given and the Public Procurement and Disposal Service is informed by the copy of this letter for the measure to be taken,” reads the letter.

Following the announcement of the cancellation of the contract the Company went to different agencies and officials seeking resolution.

This includes minister of Finance and Economic Cooperation, Abraham Tekeste (PhD) and Public Procurement & Property Administration Agency.

In a letter to Abraham, Shakeel stated that the Company had met with the director-general of the Service and got no substantial result; and was also told that the final decision was in the hands of the Service. Furthermore, Shakeel informed Abraham that the Service remained insistent on the cancellation of the contract as per the termination letter issued by the Corporation.

The Ministry, however, decline to look into the matter stating that it has no mandate to do so, sources disclosed to The Reporter.

The back and forth has shattered our confidence on the system, said Shakeel Ahmed, general manager of the Company, in a text response to The Reporter.

The company’s complaint to the Agency was also dropped.

The purchase process has already reached contractual stages and we have no mandate to treat the case, an official from the Agency told The Reporter.

This latest purchase of 400,000 MT was meant for market stabilization. The wheat was supposed to be distributed to more than 5,000 bakeries and 300 flour- mills in Ethiopia.

At the time, the total offer made by Shakeel was 700 million birr lower than similar previous purchases made by the government.

Following the cancelation, the Service has retendered the bid this week inviting international suppliers.