15 December 2017

Kenya: Omtatah in Court Over De La Rue New Banknote Offer By CBK

The High Court has issued temporary orders restraining Central Bank of Kenya from signing a contract with De La Rue International Limited for the printing of new currency notes.

While certifying the case as urgent, Justice Chacha Mwita directed the applicant, rights activist Okiya Omtatah, to serve the court papers to all the respondents in the case ahead of the hearing on December 20.

Mr Omtatah told the court that the matter was extremely urgent since the tender was awarded on November 30 and the statutory 14-day grace period within which the contract may not be signed expires today.

"Unless stopped by the court, and beginning from 14th December, 2017, the first respondent will be at liberty to make and sign a contract with the third respondent, giving effect to the impugned award by the Central Bank of Kenya to De La Rue International Limited," said Mr Omtatah in a sworn statement.

Mr Omtatah said CBK has unlawfully but deliberately awarded De La Rue a preferential margin of 15 per cent to undercut the competition.

He said the company was not qualified as a preferred supplier and was not the lowest bidder.

Mr Omtatah said the award of the tender to De La Rue constitutes a deliberate and contemptuous act of fraud on the public.

To make matters worse, he added, CBK deliberately ignored the conflict of interest in the fact that De La Rue, which also won the tender to design the new banknotes, has been awarded the contract to print and supply the same.

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