The Star (Nairobi)

2 September 2014

Kenya: Italian Firm Loses Big Railway Job

THE High Court yesterday dismissed a suit in which an Italian company wants to offer consultancy services for the construction of the Sh327 billion standard gauge railway line.

Judge George Odunga dismissed Team Engineering SPA case which was contesting the Public Procurement Administrative Review Board's decision to award a Chinese firm working with local firms to get the consultancy work.

The Chinese firm has teamed up with Third Railway Survey and Design Group Corporation, APEC and EDON Consortium.

The Chinese consortium scored 88.6 per cent and was followed by Korea Railway Network Authority with 83.4 per cent, while Team Engineering came third with 75.9 per cent.

However, after PPARB's decision to uphold Kenya Railway Corporation decision to give the consultancy tender to the Chinese firm, TEAM filed an application through lawyer Abdulwahid Biriq before Odunga saying PPARB judgement made on June 24 should be done away with.

Lawyer Biriq said the award of the tender not only breached provisions of the public procurement laws, but also the constitution.

Yesterday, Odunga said the motion that had been filed by TEAMS had failed and that each party should bear the cost of the suit.

"In the premises of the notice motion dated July 9, 2014, it fails in light of my findings," Odunga said.

He said the prayers that had been sought by TEAM had also failed.

In the PPARB decision, it declared that construction of the railway line from Mombasa to Nairobi should proceed.

The board threw out the application by TEAM seeking to nullify the tender and and lifted orders issued against KRC restraining it from going ahead with consultancy services for design, review and construction supervision of the project.

"The stay order issued by the board on June 6 is hereby discharged and KRC is at liberty to proceed with the procurement process," said the board led by the chairman Paul Gicheru, members Nelson Orgut, Weche Okubo, Peter Ondieki and Paul Ngotho.

In May, Kenya signed the railway deal with China to finance the construction of the 500km railway line from Mombasa to the city.

The deal was for China to fund 85 per cent of the multi-billion project with the other 15 per cent being provided by the Kenyan government.

The signing of the pact was led by President Uhuru his deputy William Ruto and Chinese PM Li Keqiang. It was witnessed by Presidents Yoweri Museveni, Paul Kagame, Salva Kiir and officials from Tanzania.

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