We got Sh15bn con­tract fairly – Swiss firm

Cord leader Raila Odinga says SICPA Se­cu­rity So­lu­tions got deal ir­reg­u­larly

The Star (Kenya) - - News - DO­MINIC WABALA @Wa­bal­aDom­nic

A Swiss com­pany has dis­missed al­le­ga­tions by Cord leader Raila Odinga that it was in­volved in a Sh162 bil­lion rev­enue rip off on im­ports.

The op­po­si­tion leader made the al­le­gati­ions on Satur­day, dur­ing the burial of vet­eran jour­nal­ist David Ohito’s mother Joyce Aol in West Ugenya ward.

SICPA Se­cu­rity So­lu­tions Ltd re­gional vice pres­i­dent Michele Casteg­naro yes­ter­day said the firm was awarded the Ex­cis­able Goods Man­age­ment Sys­tems con­tract reg­u­larly by the Kenya Rev­enue Au­thor­ity.

“Our com­pany has no busi­ness with goods im­ported be­cause it sup­ports the KRA in mark­ing ex­cis­able goods in the Kenyan mar­ket,” he said.

“This in­cludes al­co­hol, cig­a­rettes and other prod­ucts un­der the KRA guid­ance and or­ders. Our role within EGMS is first and fore­most help­ing en­sure tax com­pli­ance for ex­cise tax col­lec­tion pur­poses and not fight­ing coun­ter­feits and il­licit trade, a role that other agen­cies in Kenya are re­spon­si­ble for.”

While an­swer­ing ques­tions from the Adan Key­nan-led Pub­lic in­vest­ments Com­mit­tee in Septem­ber, SICPA ex­ec­u­tive Bruno Frentzel said the firm’s sub­sidiary along­side 200 other com­pa­nies are un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

“I am aware we are be­ing in­ves­ti­gated, but I don’t know what they are look­ing for,” he said.

SICPA Se­cu­rity So­lu­tions was awarded a Sh15.9 bil­lion ex­cise duty stamps print­ing con­tract by the tax­man.

It was cleared by the Pub­lic Pro­cure­ment Reg­u­la­tory Au­thor­ity.

The Pub­lic Pro­cure­ment Reg­u­la­tory Au­thor­ity gave the go-ahead to the KRA to im­ple­ment the multi­bil­lion-shilling Ex­cise Goods Man­age­ment Sys­tem con­tract to SICPA to print, sup­ply and de­liver 12.8 bil­lion ex­cise duty stamps for five years.

PPRA di­rec­tor gen­eral Mau­rice Juma said the tax­man was “rea­son­able” in en­gag­ing SICPA for ex­tra scope of the elec­tronic stamps con­tract, since the com­pany in­stalled soft­ware which could ver­ify the au­then­tic­ity of stamps.

“The pro­cure­ment was ne­ces­si­tated by the amend­ment of the Cus­toms and Ex­cise Reg­u­la­tions vide the Cus­toms and Ex­cise Reg­u­la­tions, 2013 - Le­gal No­tice No.110 of June 18, 2013,” Juma said in a let­ter, a copy of which has been sent to the Clerk of the Na­tional Assem­bly.

“These reg­u­la­tions ex­panded the scope of prod­ucts to be af­fixed with the stamps, thus in­creas­ing the need for stamps from 3.55 bil­lion stamps to ap­prox­i­mately 12.8 bil­lion stamps.”

The ten­der will see ex­cise duty stamps ex­tended to wa­ter, beer, soft drinks and cos­met­ics. Cur­rently, the rev­enue se­cu­rity stamps are used on cig­a­rettes, wines and spir­its.

/ MONICAH MWANGI

Stan­dard five pupils Aus­tine Kamau, Kel­ton Nju­guna and Peter Irungu sort out plas­tics for sale at the Dan­dora dump­site on Satur­day. The three work at the dump­site dur­ing school hol­i­days and earn be­tween Sh70 and Sh100 per day

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