THE government will issue a statement on the status of the ongoing tendering for Biometric Voter Registration kits between Kenya and Canada. Justice minister Eugene Wamalwa said the update will be made after a stakeholders' meeting to be held before the end of this week.
He said the tender was expected to be complete "soon as possible" to enable the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission start voter registration in readiness for the next year's general election. This statement is expected before Friday.
"We will meet after the National Peace Conference to review the progress of the tender and thereafter issue a comprehensive status report to the public,' the minister said on Tuesday at the Bomas of Kenya. The minister spoke as reports emerged that French firm Morpho Sagem (currently Safran Sagem), which failed in the IEBC tender at the technical stage, was also being considered for the supply of the kits.
"I can comment about which company will be given the award since its the Canadian who will determine the winner of the tender," said Wamalwa. Canadian firm, Code Inc, which was involved in the pilot BVR project of 18 constituencies in Kenya before the 2010 referendum is also among those said to be considered for the tender.
Code, Inc went into liquidation and has since been reamed International Electoral System, a government agency providing BVR solutions in Canada. South Africa form FaceTech, which was the 3rd least evaluated bidders in the IEBC tender was also said to be among the firms which made presentation to the joint government panel that is spearheading the tender.
Last month, the government announced moments after it took over the process from the IEBC, that the kits will arrive before September. However, three days to September date, there are no signs that the deal has been finalized raising concerns over whether the kits will arrive for the electoral body to commence registration of an estimated 19 million voters.
The supplying form will also be responsible of training the IEBC registration clerks on how to sue the system to register voters electronically for the March 4 elections. Canada, granted the government Sh4.2 billion for the project, which is key towards the realization of a credible general election.