In a 188 paged letter complete with evidence, a whistleblower has lifted the lid on the corruption in the medical tender awarded to CIC General Insurance Ltd (CIC), Old Mutual General Insurance Kenya Limited (Old Mutual) and Britam General Insurance Company (K) Ltd (Britam).
The consortium reportedly won a Sh8.7 billion tender to provide the National Police Service (NPS) and the Kenya Prison Services (KPS) members medical cover.
In a curious fashion, the Kenyan govt decided to give the tender to private hands despite the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF), a parastatal also bidding.
NHIF, the previous provider, made a bid way above the consortia with a Sh9.4 billion. The medical cover expired on 31st December 2022.
Govt usually takes the lowest bid as the winning bid; but that’s just if it goes by the book.
A whistleblower has now written to the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) seeking the cancellation of the tender award over gross illegalities.
The REQUEST FOR INVESTIGATIONS ON ILLEGALITIES, IRREGULARITIES AND NON-COMPLIANCE’S COMMITTED IN TENDER NO. MICNG/NPS/002/2022-2023 FOR PROVISION OF MEDICAL COVER FOR THE MEMBERS OF THE NATIONAL POLICE SERVICE AND KENYA PRISONS SERVICE outlines 18 illegalities committed in the tender award.
He argues that the Terms of Reference (ToR) followed the law but in the award, the NPS illegally awarded a consortium the tender even though the Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Act, 2015 and its attendant Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Regulations, 2020 nor the mandatory Standard Tender Document issued by the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) for procurement of insurance services do not provide for firms to participate as a consortium in procurement of any services.
“There is nothing in the Act, Regulations or the Standard Tender Document provided by PPRA prescribing that a public entity can use a consortium when procuring insurance services neither has the Standard Tender Document for insurance services allowed any amendment to that effect,” he argues.
The whistleblower’s arguments, put under the lense of the law; vividly exposes the rush by criminal elements atop the NPS to subvert the process and award private entities a tender where they would rip off the common mwananchi.
Were they promised huge kickbacks?
The directive to have the National Police Service (NPS) have its own budget complete with its accounting officer must not be used to loot the force.
Kenyans demand better security, protection and service devoid of extra judicial means from the NPS.
The Accounting Officer of the National Police Service (NPS), Ms Bernice Sialaal Lemedeket signed addendums in the tender on 8th and 9th December respectively; to enable an unlawful win.
The whistleblower reveals that, Two Addendum’s were issued, Addendum No. 1/2022 on 8th December, 2022 and Addendum No. 2/2022 on 9th December, 2022. (Exhibit 2 — Addendum No. 2/2022 Dated 9th December, 2022)
Addendum No. 2/2022 clarified among other issues that the persons eligible to bid in the tender were:
i Insurance Underwriters, or
ii Consortium of Insurance Underwriters, or
iii Public Entities.
The whistleblower complains and in truth that,“The requirement that bidders can participate as a consortium as given in the tender invitation notice and Addendum No. 2/2022 is not founded in the procurement Act and was therefore a creation of the National Police Service which is a breach of Section 53 of the Act which provides that all procurement by public entities are subject to the rules and principles of the Act — The National Police Service in this tender created and used its own procurement laws.”
“The Principal Administrative Secretary, Bernice S. Lemedeket in doing this also breached the requirements of Section 44(1) of the Act which bestows primary responsibility on the Accounting Officer to ensure that all procurement conducted within any public entity complies with the Act.”
The whistleblower argues that the tender should be voided and cancelled for breaching the Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Act, 2015.
“It is an offence pursuant to Section 176(1)(1) of the Act to sign a contract contrary to the requirements of the Act and Regulations. The Attorney General (AG) should not approve this unlawful contract because I am aware that now that it will be taken to the AG for approval since it is above Ksh 5 billion pursuant to Section 134(2) of the Act”.
The whistleblower urges the NPS, its accounting officer Bernice Lemedeket and the Inspector General of Police Japeth Koome to cancel the tender within 7 days (from 2nd January 2023) ‘for multiple and grave breeches of the law’, failure to which he will sue.
“I urge the National Police Service Principal Administrative Secretary and the Inspector General Of Police to immediately cause the cancellation of this tender and or the voiding of the contract within 7 days of the date of this letter for multiple and grave breaches of the law failure to which I will be forced to take the appropriate legal actions to protect the law and the resources of the people of Kenya”