Andrew Ndishishi, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry, is alleged to have pushed for the special meeting held on
Wednesday, having briefly interrupted his
leave to handle the matter of awarding of the tender to Italian company Impregilo.
own admission, Ndishishi
hardly ever attends Tender Board meetings and thus raised eyebrows when he
pushed for and attended the 'emergency' session.
The Wednesday meeting was attended by only a few permanent secretaries because many had already gone on leave.
Its decision clashed with what was discussed on Friday, 16 December 2011, when the majority of Tender
Board members insisted on granting the contract to China Henan International Cooperation.
Permanent secretaries from government ministries and similar agencies are the members of the Tender Board.
The Namibian understands that at the Friday meeting, many Tender Board members shot down the ministry's recommendation for Impregilo SPA, not only because its bid was high but also because the Italian outfit had in the past been implicated in corruption allegations and allegedly paid fines in Lesotho.
declined to respond to more than 10 questions e-mailed to him yesterday, after having initially referred The Namibian to the Tender Board.
"These allegations are serious, malicious, false and baseless.
I have referred them to my lawyers to advise the next course of action.
I cannot leave it there.
The court shall establish the truth," said Ndishishi in an e-mail reply without answering any of the questions.
Samuel //Goagoseb, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Safety and Security, chaired the two Tender Board meetings in the absence of the official chairperson, who is the Permanent Secretary of Finance, Ericah Shafudah, or her deputy.
Goagoseb said yesterday that no decision was reached last Friday and that the tender was sent back due to a "number of pending things".
did not want to divulge the decision made on Wednesday but said it was made "in the interest of the country".