In Summary
  • The AG argues that the case by NIB should be dismissed because it is calculated to tarnish the credibility of PPARB and undermine its authority as the oversight body in procurement matters.
    State Counsel Edward Munene Wanjohi told Justice John Mativo that the PPARB observed the rules of natural justice and acted lawfully, fairly and reasonably in the exercise of its statutory mandate.

The dispute over a tender to build the Sh200 billion High Grand Falls dam has taken a new twist after the Attorney General disowned the National Irrigation Board in a court case it has filed against Public Procurement Administrative Review Board (PPARB).
In submissions filed at the High Court last week, the AG wants a judicial review filed by NIB seeking to overturn the rulings and decisions of the PPARB thrown out for undermining its authority and mandate.
The AG argues that the case by NIB should be dismissed because it is calculated to tarnish the credibility of PPARB and undermine its authority as the oversight body in procurement matters, erode public confidence in government tendering and to delay compliance of its orders.
State Counsel Edward Munene Wanjohi told Justice John Mativo that the PPARB observed the rules of natural justice and acted lawfully, fairly and reasonably in the exercise of its statutory mandate under the Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Act.
“The matter has been before PPARB in various applications — number 80 of 2018, 104 0f 2018, 155 of 2018, and 22 of 2019 — but in each time, NIB showed defiance and cunning conduct to the directions and guidance issued by the Board, thus violating the various procurement laws,” reads the AG’s submission.
Through the replying affidavit sworn by Henock Kirungu, who is the PPARB secretary, the Attorney General also sought to have the matter dismissed on the basis it was time barred arguing that all the four previous rulings by the procurement review board were never challenged before the High Court.
Mr Wanjohi asked the court to throw out the NIB case in order to restore the authority of PPARB failure to which its legal mandate will be defeated and set a bad precedent.
The AG’s strong stand in the matter puts the NIB in an awkward position, because this effectively means the government has disowned its decisions even before the matter is determined by the High Court.