THE Harare International Airport cleaning saga took a new twist last Friday as the State Procurement Board (SPB) defended a local cleaning firm Sterile Systems Hygienic Services, director Venah Kufakunesu, who won the contract last year.
CHARLES LAITON,SENIOR COURT REPORTER
SPB principal officer Cledwin Nyanhete told the court that Kufakunesu’s firm was awarded the airport cleaning contract after going through all the necessary procedures required for a firm to be considered for the job.
Kufakunesu is on trial for allegedly winning the contract fraudulently and through misrepresentations.
However, Nyanhete said the airport cleaning tender was advertised on June 6 last year and closed on July 10 during which period the SPB received 10 bidders for the Harare airport of which Sterile Systems Hygienic Services was one of them.
“It is important to note that company called Sterile Systems Hygienic Services forwarded bids for all the three airports, Harare, Bulawayo and Victoria Falls and when the tenders closed, we then forwarded all the documents to CAAZ accounting officer for recommendation on who to award the tender,” Nyanhete said.
“The accounting officer did his evaluation and made a recommendation to award the tender to another firm and brought the documents back to us to award the tender form,”
“When the papers were brought to the board, our own secretariat did its own evaluation and recommended the lowest bidder and for Harare, our own secretariat recommended Sterile Systems Hygienic Services and for Bulawayo and Victoria Falls, Extreme Action was considered.”
Commenting on Sterile Systems Hygienic Services registration as a cleaning firm and on its bank accounts Nyanhete said: “Upon receipt of the allegations of irregularities that were raised, the board directed the secretariat to approach relevant authorities to investigate the matter and Standard Chartered Bank confirmed the firm held an account with them.”
“A follow up was also made with the Registrar of Companies who also confirmed the firm was registered and had followed the procedures, so to us everything on Sterile Systems Hygienic Services was above board.”
Under cross-examination by Kufakunesu’s lawyer Admire Rubaya, Nyanhete said allegations that Kufakunesu had won the tender through fraudulent means and misrepresentations, did not emanate from SPB.
“To the best of my knowledge and ability SPB was not the complainant in this matter and there were no misrepresentations made to the SPB,” Nyanhete said.