Tanzania: Ministry in dubious exam deal

THE Ministry of Education and Vocational Training last year awarded a private company a 72.6m/- deal to print primary school leaving certificates contrary to a government directive. As a result, the Prime Minister, Mr Mizengo Pinda, has since underscored that all government documents be printed by the Government Printer.

An advert released by the ministry and published by this paper this week named the company as M/S M.I. Printing and Stationery Supplies of Dar es Salaam. The Company printed 433,260 certificates for all pupils who sat for the examination last year.

The tender was floated on June 20, last year under the advert, Printing of P/School leaving certificates and was subsequently awarded within 30 days. Contacted for comments, the Minister of State in the Prime Ministers Office (Regional Administration and Local Government), Celina Kombani, declined details on the matter, but said the government would ensure that all ministries and government departments printed their documents at the Government Printer.

Ms Kombani conceded that nothing could be done now to reverse the move to award the tender because the deal had already been sealed. The premier told the National Assembly that the move to print all documents at the government facility would limit leakages of sensitive information and save unnecessary costs.

The Government Printer, Cassian Chibogoyo, said he was shocked by revelation of the ministrys decision to award the tender to a private firm, adding he wasnt even aware of it in the first place.

To contract a private company to print such sensitive documents means the government will not be able to deal with bogus certificates, he observed.

He added that the government had facilitated his printer with necessary equipment to publish a lot of documents and called upon government officials to fully utilize the services offered and respect the Premiers directive and Public Procurement procedures. Efforts to contact the ministry officials proved futile yesterday.

Daily News

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