Saturday, April 24, 2010

NCC microphone purchase is unwarranted – Miyanda

NCC microphone purchase is unwarranted – Miyanda
By George Chellah
Sat 24 Apr. 2010, 04:20 CAT

The purchase of microphones for the NCC was at a cost of K1.8 billion
HERITAGE Party (HP) leader Brigadier General Godfrey Miyanda has described the National Constitutional Conference (NCC)’s purchase of microphones at a cost of K1.8 billion as unwarranted expenditure.

And Brig Gen Miyanda has demanded a full disclosure of how the transaction came about. Commenting on the purchase of microphones for the NCC, Brig Gen Miyanda observed that there was no justification for this unwarranted expenditure, which the NCC was trying to justify.

He stated that there were a lot of red herrings splashing about in the attempt to give satisfactory answers on the latest scandal of microphones for the NCC.

“The issue is not whether the items purchased are government property or not but how they were bought and why. Further if the items were ordered a long time ago, the public are entitled to know what steps were taken to ensure that the items were delivered in time for the actual purpose for which the contract was entered into,” Brig Gen Miyanda stated.

“Who drew up the contract and what was the timeframe for delivery? Why was the order not carried out punctiliously? While it is true that the Mulungushi International Conference Centre (MICC) falls under the National Housing Authority (NHA), the NCC does not fall under the MICC and is not an agent of the said organisation nor of the NHA.

“Further, the NCC was not created as a purchasing agent for the MICC or any other government unit. So under what consideration did NCC buy microphones on behalf of the MICC? This is sheer recklessness and the decision was made with malice aforethought.”

Brig Gen Miyanda stated that the NCC was created on the fallacious claim that it was cheaper than a constituent assembly.

“So now what has happened at the 11th hour? There is no justification for this unwarranted expenditure, which the NCC is trying to justify. Was the contract honoured? If not there is a breach by not delivering the items on time,” stated Brig Gen Miyanda. “We demand full disclosure of how this transaction came about, the delivery schedule stipulated in the contract and the inventory and other details of the purchase.“

Recently, NCC delegate Bonnie Tembo sought clarification from chairperson Chifumu Banda on the purchase of microphones at a cost of K1.8 billion.

In response, Banda said the microphones in question were government property.

“There is no problem at all, if people want to be negative they will always be negative. The bottom line is that these microphones we’ve been using have given us problems. A decision was made a long time ago to purchase new ones so this is not something new. And let me say that these microphones are government property and they will obviously be surrendered to government,” said Banda.

“Bear in mind that Mulungushi International Conference Centre is under National Housing Authority, and National Housing Authority is a quasi-government institution.

This should not worry people. Honourable Chifumu Banda will not go away with this equipment. If people want to be negative, you can’t stop them. Some people are just naturally negative. If you show them a white piece of paper they will tell you it’s red. So, we have to learn to live with them.”

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