What you need to know:
- The Ministry of Education officially opened the tender for the procurement of 1.3 million laptops on Tuesday.
- Education PS Belio Kipsang’ said Wednesday he was waiting for the final tender committee report.
The Sh9.7 billion laptop project has run into a procurement crisis after all bidders quoted more money than the budget.
Only nine companies are bidding for the lucrative tender, but one vendor placed a double bid in a process that saw the lowest bidder quoting Sh28.7 billion — more than three times the budget.
It is feared the ministry may have to vary its budget to proceed with the project in the same capacity previously planned or trim quantities and scale down on quality.
The overall project budget is Sh17.5 billion, which includes infrastructure, security, content and training.
The Ministry of Education officially opened the tender for the procurement of 1.3 million laptops on Tuesday.
HP Commercial is the lowest bidder quoting Sh28.7 billion, with a unit price of Sh20,639 — almost double what the government has budgeted for.
Chinese company Huawei PTE Ltd is the highest bidder quoting Sh60.5 billion.
Others are Samsung Electronics (Sh39.1 billion), Symphony Technologies (Sh38 billion), Haier Technologies (Sh34 billion), ZTE Corporation (Sh33 billion) and Telcom Kenya (Sh32 billion).
Mastec EA Ltd placed two bids quoting Sh32.6 billion in one and Sh31.3 billion in another while Shen Zhen Auto Digital quoted Sh30.3 billion.
Education PS Belio Kipsang’ said Wednesday he was waiting for the final tender committee report.
“At the moment we want to wait for the tender report to come. We may have come up with a budget, but now we are faced with the actual reality as dictated by market factors. We will give advice as and when the report is ready,” Dr Kipsang’ told the Nation.
The PS, however, allayed fears that the project could collapse because of the high market rates as indicated in the quotations by the vendors.
According to the ministry’s budget, Sh9.8 billion had been set aside for buying the laptops, Sh800 million for training, Sh500 million for digital content and Sh5.8 billion for setting up computer laboratories in 10 primary schools in each of the country’s 290 constituencies.
The ministry also seeks to procure 20,637 printers and to distribute a similar number of projectors to each primary school across the country.
The ministry had set high standards for the vendors after placing a Sh228 million bid bond for the laptop tender, locking out many potential bidders from the process.
Bidders were also required to place Sh14 million for the printers tender security bond and another Sh20.4 million bond for the projectors tender.