The National Super Alliance has failed to produce evidence to support its claim that the government will interfere with the electoral process if a contract awarded to a Dubai-based company to print ballots is allowed to proceed, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission has said.
Nasa, through lawyer Jackson Awele, is opposed to the tender awarded to Al Ghurair Printing and Publishing, saying there is information concerning associations between the company’s directors and shareholders and President Uhuru Kenyatta.
However, the IEBC, through lawyer Kamau Karuri, argues that Nasa is challenging the award of the contract based on alarmist and unproven claims contained in newspaper reports.
The agency said it opted for direct procurement and awarded the contract to Al Ghurair Printing and Publishing, an option provided for in the Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Act.
“The decision to go for direct procurement was informed by the fact that there are a few days left to the constitutionally set August 8 date for conducting general election, and which is not subject to change,” lawyer Karuri said in court papers.
In arriving at its decision, the commission said it considered Al Ghurair Printing and Publishing’s capacity to deliver, track record in printing ballots and reputation in handling sensitive security material.
The IEBC said the proposal by Nasa that it should have consulted the public on the choice of Al Ghurair Printing and Publishing is misconceived as the Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Act does not provide for public participation in such instances.
The Jubilee Party, through lawyers Tom Macharia, Fred Ngatia, and Ahmednasir Abdullahi, said Nasa had failed to disclose that the IEBC met all political parties where they were informed of the plan to directly procure Al Ghurair Printing and Publishing and the reasons for that decision.
Al Ghurair Printing and Publishing, through lawyer Waweru Gatonye, said its shareholders, directors and staff have never visited State House, or been involved in any State function presided over by President Kenyatta in Kenya or Dubai.
The case will be heard on Friday.